This year, July has given me fewer chances to hike than I hope, due to weather. Of the five weekends, I’ve managed to go hiking only twice – but that’s something, and I took a couple of photos on my way, too.
16.7.: Seeking shade
After two rainy weekends, the third July weekend was a bit too hot. Unwilling to pass on a chance to finally spend a day outdoors, I set out – the forecast was somewhat favorable, mentioning a chance of rain showers around 15:00 at the soonest. Given my plan, there was a high chance I’d be done or almost done by that time.
However, to shelter myself from the heat, I planned a hike that led me mostly through the woods and offered only a few lookouts. The morning was a bit chilly, but it took me only a moment to warm up once I started (and the sun poked out from the clouds).
The trail started with a relatively easy ascension – another reason I’ve chosen it. The first peak and its surroundings offered me a view westawrd, featuring the nearby hills and the nearby marble quarry.
The descent took me towards the processing and loading facility in the pass, a board at the entrance boasting 3266 days without a workplace accident. The trail then went parallel with a road leading towards the upper quarry, though there was no activity that day. A board nearby mentions not only the long history of marble mining but also how nature can take over an abandoned quarry. Which, in some parts, was a visible process, with tree saplings growing on the edge. In a strange contrast, the field near the quarry seemed untouched by it, with butterflies around.
My next steps took me to a trail I’ve used twice already, both times in autumn. The first time, it was a misty day that led to one of my favorite photos, despite being taken by a low-quality phone camera.
The clearing is, however, becoming overgrown – and this photo won’t be replicable anymore as the tree saplings are now taller than me.
At the last major peak, I came across a group of people with dogs – mostly very resilient breeds such as a husky – who were on a 100km hike. Nearing the end, they were tired but obviously having fun. To my surprise, even one of the dogs took a sip of rum… so I could only wonder who’d be more likely to lead the pair astray – the dog or the human?
The descent started through a muddy forest of a highland bog, then on a continuous descent towards the train station. Leaving around 15:30, there was still no sight of rain, and I managed to get home dry, though when I was nearing my home, the roads were wet and there was some distant thunder – meaning I missed a summer storm by a bit.
24.7. – Unusual time of year
The following weekend, likewise very hot, had led me to places I tend to visit in winter more than in summer – most of the time, they’re quite crowded during the main summer season while winter makes many of the side trails pretty much empty. The first sight I took a picture of, though, was still during my train ride – one of the stations has a stork nest on one of the pylons carrying the overhead wires.
I took a side trail to the first peak, which wasn’t as busy as the approach from the larger (and easier to reach) town. The chalet on the peak dates back to the late 1800s and the first lookout tower into the 1920s, though the current tower (ca. 30 meters tall) is from the mid-2000s.
I then descended towards a nearby pass to then ascend again, to another peak. Below it is a field that I’ve walked… maybe the first time ever in summer.
The trail led me past a chapel from 1898…
…to the pass where the main landmark is a chalet from 1899. In 2014, fire pretty much destroyed the wooden building, leaving only short sections of charred walls. By mid-2020, the chalet was restored, using the same construction methods as in the 1890s.
From there, I descended back to the valley and took a train home, which put an early end to my July hikes as the following weekend was rainy from late Friday to late Sunday.
So, that’s a small bit about my July hikes. As of now, it seems the early August should be more favorable when it comes to weather. Obviously, I can’t promise anything, but I hope to have more photos to share sooner or later.
In the meantime, I hope the summer is treating you well. Until next time…