It´s Wednesday late afternoon. This was the best day since I started this trip.
In the morning I was leaving hotel decided to go to the paid camp 5 km from Modrava, where I would just stay and chill. My feet were still hurting, but after repacking and leaving some useless stuff in the hotel, my bag was quite lighter and after few steps I was undecided again.
I literally kept standing on the road not knowing if to go left or right. And then Ignác went right, so I went right too (not sure if he doesn´t regret his decision now).
And so here we are, back on the trek.
It was little bit up and down today, but it didn´t feel difficult at all. I left few kilos in Modrava and also I figured out, that my bag wasn´t set properly (yes, make sure about that too).
I must say that today Ignác looked more tired than me.
Weather was really hot, so we tried to walk from shadow to shadow. The main goal of the day was to visit spring of Vltava river. There we took a break and then it was last 4 km up hill, where Ignác really didn´t look so excited anymore.
Luckily we reached the camp already around 4 pm, so finally we had enough time to rest. Ignác is also learning. This was the first time, when he let me set the tent, so he can right away go inside. Not like all previous times when he went under the tent while I was building it.
I lied down on the bench next to the tent in the shadow of the tree. I was enjoying silence. For the first time I came early to enjoy the place and I thought it would actually be nice to stay here alone. I though I would make it this time.
Although after some time Ignác started barking. There was a German couple coming, obviously not fans of dog.
I must say that Ignác guards me really perfectly the whole trek. Any time someone comes closer he barks at them a lot. I am quite happy for it.
Those guys weren´t really talkative comparison to me, who haven´t spoken with anyone for days (I don´t count Ignác). But what they told me was, that when they slept on Poledník, one night after me, there was like six or seven tents. Amazing! And I was there scared alone. So who knows if I will ever sleep again alone.
I am still alive. Today was the last longest journey. From now on, it´s going to be shorter and shorter. Except last 4 (never ending) km, the whole day was quite easy and interesting.
We spent the whole day along the Czech/German border.
The road led through villages on German border, which got destroyed in the war. There are practically just stones left, but you can feel that atmosphere. Like you are going through someone´s invisible home.
It got little bit rainy during the afternoon, but I didn´t want to rush as I kept watching pictures on informative boards on the way. There were real pictures of people and houses from original villages. If you have good imagination, you could go through the area picturing the old life there.
We made it. We are just waiting for the train, me drinking celebrating beer and waiting for “řízek” (schnitzel). Already third one in last three days. I am enjoying last hours here and feel like summarizing the end of the trip as in last days I didn´t have much time to write.
On night of 6th there was quite big storm. It was the first night when Ignác slept properly. Probably because he couldn´t hear any other sounds.
Next day was quite piecefull. Pretty easy way through countryside on roads. We reached Nové Údolí early and so I couldn´t resist and stopped in the restaurant.
Before Modrava I used to eat bread with salami and I was never too hungry. But now being on nuts during the day and Ignác only on his treats we both starting feeling hungry. I also noticed Ignác being tired. I took some extra food for him to give him little bigger portions, but as we lost one day in Modrava and our trip got one day longer I had to start making his portions smaller. And also mine. And that´s how we started our last three days řízek tour.
Also his barking at German couple, which we kept meeting more often, was quite intense in evenings and based on my previous experiences with him, tireness could be a big aspect in it. And so I went to the restaurant and řízek seemed a good option to share. And it was. They brought me a portion of two huge ones. I gave him piece, in the evening I gave him also some of my pasta and he also slept quite good. Yeh, he just needed a proper portion to eat.
We enjoyed camping in Nové Údolí a lot. Not only we had a dinner at restaurant, I also took a first (and last) bath during the whole trip. Normally I tried to a bit refresh myself every day in some streams in the forest, but this time we found a big one near our camping spot. It was little deep, so I could actually really go in and take a bath. It was really cold but felt so good.
“Yes, that´s a moskito on my forehead.” 🙂
I am happy I didn´t go opposite direction as I saved the best for the end. My feet started getting used to the pain from broken blisters, I just started thinking about it as part of the “package”. You want to go, take the pain with you.
After few kilometres on the road, road stopped being a road. There was a hardly recognizable path between rocks and water leading up hill. I could see the sign of German border and for some reason I was sure it´s the end of the hill. How wrong I was, it was just the beggining.
I really didn´t expect that as the whole week there were no big hills (except Poledník, let´s not talk about that day anymore). But this time it was climbing and climbing. I started meeting people, which wasn´t really so usual, so I thought I am probably going to some famous spot.
After some time of going up, I left the forest and started having views. Very nice views. I was like wow, now I feel like being in mountains finally. You know, when you complete this exhausting climb up, but it´s worth it.
Although after being happy about he view, I knew there is supposed to be a restaurant on the top, but I still couldn´t see it and I was getting more and more tired. My back pack was getting heavy again and I just wished to get some spot to rest. Instead I met guys going opposit direction, who told me, that from the top of this hill to my campign spot is quite far and difficult and good luck. That´s not what I wanted to hear, but at the end thanks to them I expected worse than it was.
At the end kept enjoying the views as we could see villages, lakes, mountains, even Alps in distance.
I feel so cool and stress free. Train is too full so instead of hot sweaty coupé we are sitting with Ignác on the floor at the hall with wind in our hair (I hope I won´t get sick).
I am full of his hair, dirty and smelly after the whole week, but happy. I feel ten years younger. Maybe because I should have done this ten years ago.
Every summer I would take a train to my parents, I used to be jelous of those groups of people with huge rucksaks, sleeping bags and guitars. I always wanted to make a trip like that. Take a train to countrysite for camping. I always waited for someone to go with me.
Also this trip was meant to go two plus Ignác. At the end I had a choice to go alone or not to go. I chose to go alone as I did already many times in my life before. And it was always the right choice. Now I am sure that as long as I have Ignác, I will never be alone. He won´t let me. It was a whole new experience for me to do this kind of a trip only with a dog. He was a great company.
If you travel with dog, you are really not alone. I traveled alone before and it was different. I got really the whole time for my own thoughts, like this you look after him, take care of him and talk to him. A lot. But the good thing is, that if you don´t feel like talking, you don´t have to. You just look in his eyes, give him some cuddles and smile or just walk his site and he understands.
I have this feeling that noone will really understand what I experienced out there, but it´s because noone was there with me. It will be only me and Ignác sharing our memories.
I remember my very first solo trip. It was when I went for few days to Copenhagen, while I was studying in Denmark. I went alone because noone wanted to go. Those memories are still with me. But there is one difference between then and now. I always had a tendency to take so many pictures. Like I can´t share it with anyone, so I could at least show them pictures. Last two or three days of this trip I didn´t take much. It was generally quite difficult to always put that bag down and set the camera, so at the end I just felt like walking and enjoying. I would anyways at the end be only my memories.