Another hiking post! And this one even includes some climbing to top it off.
I’ve written about the hiking culture here in Slovenia and my first go at climbing our highest mountain in posts here and here. Long story short, hiking is a bit of a national pastime around here and the saying goes that you’re not a real Slovenian if you haven’t stood atop the 2864 meter high Triglav at least once.
Luckily I have, so the pressure was off when we decided to have a go this past weekend. By pure mountaineering standards, Triglav with it’s measly height of under 3000 meters of course isn’t anything special. But it is a national symbol and to reach the top for the first time is a thing of personal pride. Experienced climbers and hikers will look elsewhere for new challenges, but to average office workers looking for bragging rights, topping the mountain might not seem so easy.
All in all, Triglav is Slovenia’s most visited mountain and trails that lead to the top are well marked and maintained. Where there’s climbing to be done, they are well protected with steel ropes and grips. Most people choose to make it a two day trip with an overnight stay at one of the lodges that surround the top. Faster hikers will make the ascent in 4 or 5 hours, so a one day round trip is also possible, but sleeping in a high altitude cottage brings it’s own charms. While these cottages offer basic sleeping and eating amenities, they are a place of complete joy and warm spirit.
Never ever have I met a hiker with a bad heart – I guess bad people just don’t do these kinds of things. Especially not at these altitudes. And when you walk into a warm room after an 8-hour uphill struggle, a warm meal and some tea is the only thing on your mind. After that, somebody is sure to produce a guitar or an accordion, then dancing will ensue and heated exchanges of all kinds of stories. Soon after the sun sets behind the mountains, everyone takes to their beds and silence takes over until the early hours of the morning.
Even though we were blessed with great weather throughout the weekend, mountaintops in the area were covered with clouds and winds were blowing hard enough to lay you flat on your back. We planned to reach the summit early on the second day, but turned back due to low visibility and heavy winds. In my mind it was a good call, as going on would bring added risk and no real joy. Safety comes first and the mountain won’t go anywhere any time soon. One more reason to try again next year.
I carried a GoPro on my helmet all through the trip and made a video of it. It should serve you well to get a proper feeling of the place. Feel free to watch it down below.
And if by now you’re still reading, why not stay a while longer and look through the gallery of scenic panoramas and highland vistas. If you haven’t been in the mountains yet, now is the perfect time to start! 🙂
For more info visit the official site of the Triglav National Park.