|Date||Saturday 18 November 2006|
|Distance stage||31,5 km|
|Distance acum.||2134,5 km|
|Quality of signs||Good|
|Quality of the hike||C (good): hills and trees|
Today is the second day of my four-day hiking trip. I get up early and get going as quickly as possible.
The weather is like I have experienced every hiking day in Slovakia so far; completely clouded and some fog. Immediately after the start I need to climb the Zaruby hill, 450 meters up to 767 meters. After some 20 minutes I pass the ruins of an ancient castle. There are some people on their way for a morning walk, or so. No backpacks. The further I get up on the Zaruby hill the more fog is hiding any view. At the top there is apart from a dense fog also much wind that makes me leave immediately again.
After the steep descent from the Zaruby, through the forrests of course, I pass the small village Horne Mlyny. Like many Slovakian villages it is long spread, as all the houses are built along the main road.
The next kilometers are crossing forrests again, untill the big village of Dobra Voda. Just before leaving the village there is a bar, where I get a refresment. There’s not many people on the streets and I am also the only guest in the bar. Tonight is Saturday night, I hope they will be more busy then! Following the Trail to the end of the village, into the woods, there is a remarkable area that needs to be covered: the local cemetary! I walk back some 50 meters to check the signs and make sure this is where I am supposed to go. The white/red/white signs on left and right side of the front gate of the cemetary are clear about the direction of the Trail.
I continue my way as if I hike on cemetaries with a full backpack all the time. At the end of the cemetary there is a small gate, after which the Trail continues up the hill, very steep again. There are some other people walking up there, just for a weekend stroll or taking their dog out. I continue my way, but my feet and toes start hurting. A few kilometers further down the road, near the village Hradiste, I feel the first blister on my foot. I continue in a moderate pace, planning to finish today in the next big village, Brezova pod Bradlom. The map shows that there is an inn or hotel just before entering the village. When I pass it, it is obvious that it is closed, and I need to find another place to stay for the night. Exiting the forrest and entering the regular road at the beginning of Brezova I pass a gasstation.
I buy some chocolate bars and ask for a recommendation to stay. The guy behind the counter tells me to go two hundred meters further up the road to a former orphanage, that is now used as holliday resort for schools. There are some buses parked there, so apparantly there’s business going on. The guardian is surprised to have a demand for one room only, but he has one room available, and at 6.00pm I am done for today. This is the cheapest organized sleeping arrangement I have used so far along the E8: 2,90 euro’s. It is clean, simple and safe. Perfect!