Walking across Slovakia: Day 30

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)

Whilst we could have easily stayed in Košice longer and trained it back from Kysak, we were feeling guilty at not carrying full packs so we decided to get back to real walking. With a bit of planning, and public transport, long distance walking can be made significantly easier it seems.

We gradually climbed out of Košice through the meadows with views of the city behind us. We came to a cottage and a bit of a ski slope. But the owner, we were told was still on his way, 5 minutes, but we decided not to wait. Of course we regretted our decision. He pulled up just as we were entering the forest.

We found a wall in the forest. A big wall. Long and well maintained. It went on forever. Very Winter is Coming. We figured it was a hunting place, the wall to stop people and real wild animals from being shot. But a pee-stop and map consultation showed that it backed on to the zoo. So an ecological protection zone: not The Wall, not Winterfell. We eventually found a hole in the wall but assumed that the wild animals wouldn’t use it, as the rest of the wall was so formidable. Not that we saw any wild animals.

The rest of the day was spent walking through the pleasant but empty forest. Well I say empty, when I pointed out the lack of noise, not even any bird song, to the family, they looked at me with, what can only be described as undisguised pity. You honestly can’t hear them, they said. So maybe I am just too deaf and blind for wild life. Or they were playing some very well choreographed joke.

Towards the end of the walk we came to Jánošík’s Castle (Jánošík, to those who don’t know is a Slovak hero, a Robin Hood type, who had a problem with peas). Lots of famous people have trouble with veg, Pythagoras was scared of beans. It was, or probably still is, a rocky outcrop high above a steep sided valley. A beautiful place to have lunch in the sun, watch the trains go by way below and enjoy the view. This is another one worthy of a visit. I have used spectacular a lot, so this view I will only describe as being really rather quite nice. You can see, on the other side of the valley, the place where, a geologically long time ago, our outcrop used to go. We sat there for a long while. Enjoying the rays. We weren’t in any hurry.

We had pizza in Kysak, a new pizzeria and of course kofola and beer: Šariš (a last ditch try for sponsorship). We stayed in a children’s outdoor center, by the river. Empty save for us. We were even given the keys to unlock the caffeine drinks in the vending machine. We played a few games of table football and slept like babies, despite the trains. All trains to and from Košice go through Kysak and past our bedroom window.

Distance walked: 26km (660km in total)

Meters climbed: 737m (26,160m in total)
Walking time: 9:16 (224:18 in total)

Start point: Košice
End point: Kysak

General comment:
Enough of Košice.
Another hotel to ourselves.
We have climbed a 9% the length of the River Danube (2,860km)

By John Nicholson

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