|Date||Monday 29 September 2008|
|Distance stage||23,5 km|
|Distance acum.||2257,0 km|
|Quality of signs||Good|
|Quality of the hike||C (good): hills some nice views|
Today is the second day of my four-day hiking trip. I get up in a decent hour, and after a good breakfast I start my hike at 7.30am.
I walk out of the village, passing the local grammar school, where all the local kids are dropping in for another boring schoolweek. The climb of the Vapec hill gave me worries, as it is Slovakian tradition to make any path directly and straight up the slope. No curves or serpentines that break the steepness, just straight up. The Vapec is no exception to this tradition, but fortunately I am able to make it in a reasonable pace. On the top I enjoy the great view, on Horna Poruba and its surroundings. I have the feeling I am far away from home.
After the short break I start the descent, following the signs and the map. After a few minutes I loose the signs, but the map is clear and the path is clear as well. Half an hour later, after finding my way in the good direction to get back to the Trail again, I come across three other hikers. They are hiking the Trans-Slovakian E8 in the opposite direction, from east to west. We exchange experiences of today’s stage and they show me their map, which is more recent than mine. On their map the E8 is situated on another part of the hill, more direct (of course) than the path that I ahve been following. I good spirits I continue; it’s the first time I meet other hikers “in the field”. Shortly after I smell the smoke of petroleumstoves. It reminds me very strongly of my grandparants village in the Austrian mountains. In the autumn and winter the regular way of heating the house was with petroleum, and its smell has a nostalgic odour to me. Shortly after smelling the smoke I pass the village of Kopec. I continue in a nice pace to the village of Kosecke Rovne. From there the Trail uses the regular road for a small section, to the next village Zliechov. After Zlichov the last effort for today needs to be done: climbing the Strazov hill, covering 600 meters uphill. The first part of the climb is steep (of course), but then it gets easier. I am able to keep a comfortable, but not fast, pace. Once up the hill only the descent to Cicmany is left for today. The weather continues to be great, but by now, at the end of the afternoon, it gets chilly. I arrive in Cicmany around 5.00pm.
I stay in one of the two pensions that are available. Cicmany is nationwide known for its typical decoration on the old houses. Especially in the summer weekends many tourists come here, but on this Monday afternoon there’s no excitement.
After dinner I test the first 10 minutes of tomorrow’s hike. The Trail will pass the skilift that is clearly visible from the village, and continue eastbound. When I arrive back at the hotel the owner tells me that the ski-installations are only three years old, but that eversince they’re operational there has never been a single day in the winter that they could be used, due to the high temperatures and a lack of snow. I am happy with the temperature during this trip, and that it is dry. It was very different in my previous trips in Slovakia.