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Slovakia - Ďumbier (2043m) - "torture"and a mind reset in the Low Tatras

Updated: Aug 16, 2023

It's nice to know that women generally generate 66% more words daily than men... especially when I have three of them at home... at least now I don't have to wonder why my brain feels like it's going to explode every other day...


Well, nothing to be done, it's time for a mind reset... and when it comes to resetting, Slovakia is the place to be. Our Slovak brothers simply know best how to do it (“borovička” rules) =)


This time the choice falls on Ďumbier, because according to Filip it is beautiful and I haven't been in the Low Tatras yet…

The peak of Ďumbier Mountain in the Low Tatras, during the blue hour. Shot with Sony A7 IV and Tamron 17-28mm F/2.8 - photographer Michal Stehlik.

Last-minute booking and evidently with some luck (the area around Ďumbier in Slovakia was incredibly crowded within the winter time) I find a great value for the price - Dom horskej služby - chata Tále, where I am quickly greeted by a sign that confirms the hypothesis about the reset...

Picture of Humorous restaurant menu describing types of alcohol in funny way - photographer Michal Stehlik.

Moreover, the staff is pleasant, and the cooking is excellent… heaven on Earth…


Morning torture up to the Ďumbier summit


We wake up at a "lovely" 1.30 in the morning… I guess from now on I will go for sunrise hikes only in late December and early January, as this getting up is pure torture… horrible! =)

We move a little higher to a parking lot named “Trangoška”… haha, when will I outgrow this teenage humor... but I am amused by the name for a few more minutes...

We follow the green trail towards “Štefánička” (Gen. M.R. Štefánik's Chalet)… despite it’s almost spring time there is an incredible amount of snow and it's incredibly cold… on the way to Štefánička we are still ok, we even sweat quite a bit (climbing on ice wasn't for nothing, we worked quite hard to get there…), but we don't know yet what's about to come…


Layering clothes in winter is essential, and this year I finally learned it, but just to be safe, I carry everything in my photo bag (because it's sure to come in handy, right?), so my back is completely wet on top... but this time, I have spare shirts, so I quickly change the bottom layers because it's a "lovely" -18ºC and this year I was only hardening in a warm bathtub, eh eh…


For a moment we froze brutally, as the Ďumbier "breeze" was blowing hard… but the saying goes, there is no bad weather, only bad clothing, so after a moment we get ourselves together and start enjoying this fantastic morning…


The first morning rays are shining on Ďumbier, and the snow is turning into shades of pink and orange... I've experienced several ultra-cold sunrises this year, but this one turns out to be the most beautiful...

The Slovakian Ďumbier Mountain lit by the first morning rays of the sun. Shot with Sony A7 IV and Tamron 17-28mm F/2.8 - photographer Michal Stehlik.

We play here for about 2 hours, but when we can't open our mouths anymore, and we fear our frozen noses might snap off, and Skadi starts letting the cold in on our fingers (they hit their limit here, but Filip managed to survive quite well with Vallerret Alta Arctic Mitt Photography Gloves... so I probably know what I'll be asking Santa for under the Christmas tree...), we quickly pack up and head to Štefánička for tea and a fantastic lentil soup...

Picture of the High Tatras taken from the Ďumbier mountain during the morning dawn. Taken with Sony A7 IV and Tamron 17-28mm F/2.8 - photographer Michal Stehlik.

It's 8 in the morning and the first people are slowly starting to appear… and how else than on ski touring skis…I just have to have them by next winter… it's a huge difference whether you enjoy going downhill in style or keep falling on the icy ground without crampons… (yes, I had them with me… but I was too lazy to put them on, so… when the head is dumb, the whole body suffers…).

The peak of Ďumbier Mountain in the Low Tatras, during the blue hour. Black and white edit. Shot with Sony A7 IV and Tamron 17-28mm F/2.8 - photographer Michal Stehlik.

Another "charming" realization was the way collective immunity is handled in Slovakia… when on your way down completely strangers offer you a flask… xD I just love it here, this how a proper mind reset should be!


Until next time!


MS



GEAR:

Camera: Sony A7 IV

Drone: Mavic Air 2s


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