Walking across Slovakia: Day 14

No tents, no sleeping rough, two teenagers and two adults, 900km, 4 rucksacks and some maps, a lot of maps: this is going to be fun.

(Source: John Nicholson)

300km we are flying. Very close to the ground admittedly. And very slowly, average 3km per hour.

We were luckily that we had practiced for the bears, lots of warning posters and helpful tips from the locals. The locals said bang sticks on trees this was a new one to us. So we armed ourselves with big sticks and took a few practice swipes at trees. We leaned three things that day:

1. Hitting trees with sticks hurts
2. Hitting trees with sticks doesn’t make much noise
3. Tree hitting sticks are heavy

We decided to rely on our bear drills. We have practiced almost every day. Usually one of the children gets ‘eaten’ and the occasional wife. But as Meat Loaf almost said “One out of four ain’t bad”.

We met a couple of young men in the forest. They were doing the E8 the hard way. They were going to sleep in the forest that night. So we happily told them of the bear warnings and watched as they became increasing uneasy. We monitored the press, no one got eaten, so we think they survived.

We cheated here and stayed with friends in Martin for a couple of nights. Washing, real food, good company – not necessarily in that order. Our walk involved a lot of taxiing by our friend, for which we will be eternally grateful.

Let me get back to Slovak tourism. To find accommodation in some places we had to ring the local mayors. They were always helpful. Booking.com helps but not everywhere. Wake up Slovak tourism. There is money to be made. I found the website of one town and the first paragraph was dedicated to how the website had been prepared in accordance with the law, and which law. And while I am sure it had been, not that I cared either way, there was no useful information on the site.

Wakey. Wakey.

Hint: Copy off Austria.

Distance walked: 20km (300km in total)
Meters climbed: 1,046m (10,779m in total)
Walking time: 6:49 (98:07 in total)

Start point: Čičmany
End point: Vrícke sedlo

General comment: 
There are no bears in Slovakia!!!
Mauna Kea (again) – 10,203 meters the highest mountain in the world. Ok most of it underwater

By John Nicholson

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