A stormy night on Slovakia’s High Tatras Part 2

A tall wall stood before me. I looked up slowly. Unexpected. Up I begin to climb, following the footsteps and hands of the group Belgians that went before me. I could feel the heavy backpack dangling on my backpack, swinging. A slight fear crept of Quasimodo getting loose and falling down. My hands felt the stone wall, groping for edges to hold on to. A heart beating, I felt excited. Looking down, I could see the distance I was making. I could slip and it would all be over. Indubitable, this would never happen, having good grip on the simple climb. Yet the possibility made me feel excited and energetic. To search for safe ground, as small pebbles tumble down ticking off of rocks on their way. You feel your feet slipping away and for a moment a shiver goes down your spine. A big smile paints your face. Shaky hands, whether a scarce fear of the height or the adrenalin flowing through your body. Reaching the top, you glance once more down. You’re way up, you have conquered the mountain. Haughtily you hang on the top, gazing around you. Then you fling yourself to the other side to begin the descend.

This is where the path became imaginary. Rocks on top of rocks. Where to go was obvious, however how a question. Zigzagging I hopped down, landing on a platform with rock formations and small parts of grass. The lodge was about a hour and a half away, undoubtedly packed by the Belgian scouts. Alluring as it was, I chose an evening where I could be alone. Some grass had formed a group big enough for my tent, hidden behind a rock offering little cover. I took a bath in a small tarn, freshening the bones before crawling inside.

A body tired and eyelids heavy I had soon fallen asleep. But not much later, I began to wake. Sleepy I rubbed my eyes, as to why my body would wake me this early. Then all of a sudden a sound loud like a hundred horses thumping by all at once resounded through the mountains. A heartbeat dropped. Eyes open wide, I realised the wind that was hitting at my tent. A wind wailing, loud and wiry was striking my tent, hit after hit. My backpack had been moved to the opposite side of the tent and I felt a push in the same direction. Not even awake, I fought back, pushing my backpack and feet to corners in hope of holding the tent on all four. Yet with the fierce wind, it was like riding a wild horse. Braying up and down. Another loud thunder. My body was so tired, but cold and fear had a hold of me. Drops of water ticked on the tent in great groups, many at once, never ending. Another swoosh of wind, pushing my tent up and rolling me down. Feeling too feeble, too tired and too exhausted to hold the tent down, my mind want to wonder; what about my tent? What if my tent is too brittle for a wind so strong. But the train of thought ended with the opening of another resounding thunder running through the mountains. It must be close. I must be folly, spontaneously hiking and climbing a mountain unaware of names or routes, taking on a wrong one first, taking little food and getting caught in a storm. Fear of lightning striking near grew. I knew it was something I had to endure, painful and tiring as it was. Afraid as I was.. Hours passed and the storm went less and less until it became scant, when my eyes finally shut.

SUNP1000


Come morning I found myself and my tent unscathed. A tent cheap and simple had proven to be staunch during this storm. Protecting and loyal, he remained at given spot – albeit braying -and stayed waterproof. Haughtily, I stepped in my shoes soaked from the rain to continue my descend with squeaky sounds. That day was slightly misty and rainy, although nothing compared to the night’s rain. I hopped from wet rock to wet rock going down and up, up and down. A smile had found its way on my face again, as I followed the wild mountain goats. Walking on a tiny path, I saw two men below me. One stood on the side of a white hill, ready to catch rocks thrown by the other. It seemed they were writing a name in the snow.

At the lodge, a relieve left my heart when I learned I was a mere 5-6 hours from the town again. My food had ran out on exception of an apple and an energy bar. All people I met there seemed happy, all enjoying the sight anyone would love to have. In front of me hiked a lad running supplies for the lodge. His back surely had to endure a quadruple of mine and he took on the mountain on a jog. The descend was not much anymore. A few slippery, steep rocks down and I followed a zigzagging path going through thick grown flora. I was lead back into the forest where I began. Drops of rain fell down from the sky. A small rainbow appeared. Sweaty, exhausted and with a lobster tan I arrived down, hobbling to the hotel that without charge held a part of my stuff, freeing space for supplies. Once there, I learned their fee for a room was within my budget. So the evening I slept soft and warm, comfortable and without worry. Ready to take on any new adventures.


Check out the video of my hiking adventure! My first video ever!

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Any suggestions or opinions would be gladly welcomed! 🙂


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