Back to the Mountains

At the elevation of 4986 feet (1520 m) I felt that I was returning to the mountains. The week from this last Christmas to New Year’s Eve my husband and I spent in a summer hiking and winter skiing resort – The Bohinj valley. Since there was no snow, we were hiking. At the elevation of 4986 feet (1520 m) I felt that I was returning to the mountains. In 3 hours I had conquered 2821 feet (860 m) of elevation. It was just like the old days, before 2008. Before the horrible spontaneous miscarriage with inflammation of the uterus, which had led to tiredness and frequent colds. I had had to stop ascending the mountains. My husband and I had started circling the Bohinj lake, which is an even path. Miles I had been able to do, going up not. It had been a great loss, especially for my husband, who loves ‘the real mountains’ – the Alps.

Until two years ago we had started ascending a nearby hill (984 feet – 300 m of elevation) almost every weekend. And after two years of practice, these Christmas holidays, I stood at the Komna mountain hut, at the elevation of 4986 feet (1520 m). My husband was so proud of me he took pictures of me (see photo). We do not usually take pictures of each other, but this moment of elation simply called for it.

We started walking in the morning fog. The first few serpentine bends were easy, then they got harder. But with some tea they were manageable. We ran into several hikers on the way. They were all quicker than us, but I did not care. My come-back to the mountains was such a strong experience that I could not waste time and energy comparing myself to others. After an hour or so the fog started to clear and we had more tea in the sun. The serpentine bends are numbered. There are numbers on rocks in red color, the 48th being the last one. From there on the path is more straight.

After approximately 1640 feet (500 m) of altitude increased I felt tired. We decided to eat a sandwich. After the sandwich we continued to walk. My thighs started to hurt a little. And we needed to attach crampons to our mountain boots, because from there on the path was icy. The last half an hour of hiking up the slope one can see the mountain hut, which was our destination. It felt close, yet difficult to reach. The path went on and on, it seemed like an eternity, because I had not walked so high up for a long time and I was running out of strength.

Nevertheless I made it to the top and the lunch we had in a room with the view of the Bohinj lake was very gratifying. The feeling of really having deserved it overwhelmed me. The walk back on the same path was easy of course, partly because my spirits were so high up.

WARNING: If you decide to do mountain walking yourself, please get the right equipment and inquire about the dangers in the area you choose and about the general dangers like exhaustion, frostbite, getting lost and dehydration.

Take care,

Helena Smole, author of:

– a fantasy novel with romance Vivvy and Izzy the Dwarf: A series about relationships

Balancing the Beast, a book offering a bright view of schizoaffective disorder ˗ bipolar or manic-depressive type

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