Wednesday, 29 August 2012

To the ridiculous?


Vel'ka Svist'ovka summit

Sneaky view of the Vel'ka from Cierne Pleso

View down from the magistrala
After the exertions of Gerlach today's destination seems a mere bimble - but just imagine if this hill was in Cumbria! Wainwright would have devoted many pages to it.
First of all, I cheated by taking the cable car from Tatranska Lomnica to SkalnatePleso at 1751m.
The debate about using the ski lifts from Skalnate Pleso to bag the second highest point in the Tatry i.e. Lomnicky Stit (2634m) had both ethical and economic dimensions. Ethically, is it OK to bag something by merely stepping off a ski-lift. Economically, that even with a 'senior' discount it would have cost a further 40 Euros. However, as it happens, the outcome of the debate was decided by the fact that the lifts were not operating because of high winds at the summit.
It was easy walking to the summit of Vel'ka Svist'ovka (2038/P20?) using the Tatranska magistrala - a path that traverses  high up much of the way across all the High Tatry on the Slovakian side. Although it was fine weather there was mist on the tops, so not a lot to see. The Tatranska magistrala thens drops quite dramatically but with easy walking much of the way, with only one chained section, that I avoided by sliding down smooth rocks. To arrive at the refuge/chata Zelene Pleso. From there I should have just followed the rough road back down to the valley, however I continued on the magistrala to Velke Biele pleso - pleso means lake.* And it then started to pour with rain as the electrical storm was much earlier in the day than usual- let's just say I got wet and so did the stones on the path through the pine forest to the valley. Slipping and a sliding all the way.
There is a problem with beetles in the forest - so many trees are dying or dead and the path was diverted at one point because they are treating the trees with chemicals.
I reached the valley road at Biela Voda just as there was a fresh downpour of rain. Thankfully I did not have to wait too long for a bus back to T. Lomnica

*Actually, talking of the meaning of words. English 'hut', Norwegian 'hytta', Polish 'chata', French 'chateau' - got to have a common origin.
Aren't literal translations great?

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