Hiking: Refreshing rain showers

I’ve covered two of my June hikes earlier. This time, I’ll share a couple words and photos about the rest. Three of the four (though the first was still late may) had two things in common: photos of flowers and a rain shower at the end.

Even with the improving situation, the first hike (29.5.) was still affected by covid restrictions: the original plan was to go across the border, but that wasn’t possible yet, so the plan was changed a bit. Weather was decent in the morning, but the forecast promised rain for the afternoon. And we were to be at the edge of where the rain was about to pass.

The hike itself was quite relaxing, mostly crossing wide fields, but the clouds gathering around didn’t allow for any far sights. The rain shower, eventually, came when I was nearing the end.

It didn’t last too long, maybe 30 minutes. By the time, I reached the destination, and the warm day let my clothes dry relatively well. It also cooled me down in the warm day. I walked up to the ruined castle above the village. During my time there, another rain shower passed. And, finally, third shower came at the end, just as I grabbed an ice cream from the stand in the village. So I had it sprinkled with a bit of rain.

The second hike (7.6.) let me to a place I’ve visited more than a decade ago on a school trip – the place where the author Božena Němcová (1820-1862) lived for a part of her life, and placed one of her novels there. For me, it was to be a relaxing walk along the river to relax after the previous two sandstone rock trips.

In some of my past hikes, I’ve noticed a plant that looked like some ancient relict plant – the best description I could imagine was some form of shrub-size frond, or something. In fact, the plant is some sort of legume, based on the seed “pockets”. This time, I’ve seen it in bloom.

Blooming Cytisus scoparius shrub

The lower part of the valley is, because of the author’s legacy, well-maintained. As I knew the history/literature parts from school, I was interested more in the landscape and the quite old trees growing there.

But I took a few photos in the chateau gardens as well.

The third hike (12.6.) led me to another place I knew well. This was around the first heat wave, so I adjusted my plan to stay mostly in the woods. Unfortunately, most of the wild rose bushes were past the most-beautiful time of their blooming.

That day, the rain shower only came after I reached my destination.

The fourth hike (26.6.) led me to a place I know the most as a passenger – the main railroad I use (and used for reaching the palces I’ve mentioned in the previous post) speeds through the valley here.

Photo from a lookout – the railorad is visible in the upper middle

The railroad was first built in 1845 and a simple obelisk was built as a remembrance of that. In the 1930s, the second track was added, and in 1960s the railroad was electrified. The original railroad weaved around the river until 2005, when a set of 5 tunnels were built to speed up the journey from 80km/h to 120-160km/h. The original track was then repurposed as a foot/cycling path…

…and which I’ve seen a fair share of various flowers.

East exit of the east-most tunnel

At the east end of the east-most tunnel, a steam locomotive is placed as a reminder of the old railroad.

I, then, continued along the river for a while longer, reaching the town that was to be my destination, but this was just the first part – the next was a 11km loop.

Shortly after starting this loop, a rain shower caught up with me. It lasted for almost an hour, though only the first 10 minutes were noticeable. I’ve used this for taking a bit different picture – a bluebell flower with the rain drops still on it.

And, at the end, a shot towards the bearby hills, though the remaining clouds masked some of them.

Also, this hike led me to enjoy a bit of natural snack – mid-June to mid-July is the season of wild strawberries, which I like more than any of the graden-cultivated varieties, for some reason. And this place had no shortage of them.

Wild strawberries (archive picture, 2019)

So, that’s how the last month was for my travels. I hope the weather has been treating you well (a few days ago, some parts of central Europe were hit by quite strong storms) and that it’ll be only better during the summer.

Until next time…

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