The first week on Trebević felt like one big weekend. There were people coming up for tea or coffee, for a warm meal, for a beer or something stronger. There were people spending the night at the hut, there was another vulonteer from Brasil and there was a New Year’s Eve party and a New Year’s Day hike. Busy winter holidays.Continue Reading "Trebević Tales #2 “Mountain Life”"
“What are you doing for Christmas? Where will you be at New Year’s Eve? Do you have plans for your birthday?” Same questions every year. More or less same answer every year. “Don’t know, I’ll see.” For me the holidays aren’t anything special. I’d be totally fine hanging out in a hut, shovelling snow, making fire, walk a little, read a little. But to be honest this year I did feel like spending time with friends. Maybe I could do this walking, fire- making and snow shovelling stuff wíth friends?Continue Reading "Trebević Tales #1 “The Wild One & Me”"
In the Netherlands it’s a tradition to dive into the ocean on the first of January. In Bosnia and Herzegovina they hike upon a mountain. So, this year no New Year’s Dive, but a New Year’s Hike for me. And which other mountain than the one and only Trebević could it be? In this video I show you more of the beauty right above Sarajevo. Or well, Sabina shows you, cause she’s the real star of the vlog. Together with Ana, Hana, Branka and Đon we happily hike to Trebević peak. Here’s my second vlog from the mountains, hike on!Continue Reading "New Year’s Hike to Trebević peak WINTERVLOG #2"
At the end of the month I like to look back on what I’ve done and where I’ve been. On how I felt and what was on my mind. It turned out that my Instagram pictures actually give a pretty good impression. So, I decided to put them together in a blog post. Here’s my monthly photo essay, Looking back on December: Slowly sliding towards the finish line.Continue Reading "Looking back on December: Slowly sliding towards the finish line"
In Sarajevo I met up with Sabina, a sweet sweet friend ánd crazy-cool outdoor buddy I met three years ago. We stayed in touch and try to meet at least twice a year. Whenever we see eachother we go for a hike. Mostly in the mountains. This time Sabina took me to Trebević, thé mountain above Sarajevo. We made our way up from old town to mountain hut Jure Franko. Although Sarajevo is one of my favourite cities, I prefer breathing fresh mountain air. Especially during the winter Sarajevo is extremely polluted. Unfortunately.Continue Reading "Hiking from Sarajevo to Jure Franko WINTERVLOG #1"
At the end of the month I like to look back on what I’ve done and where I’ve been. On how I felt and what was on my mind. It turned out that my Instagram pictures actually give a pretty good impression. So, I decided to put them together in a blog post. Here’s my monthly photo essay: Looking back on November BLUE TRAIL it is ✌️👣.Continue Reading "Looking back on November: BLUE TRAIL it is"
It’s all about the mindset, but how to set your mind when you’re hiking the last leg of a trail which is still 900 kilometers? It’s not like I’m almost done, while at the same time it’s the last part. Also, the word mindset implies that I’m in control of my mind. I whish. Or maybe not? In reality my mind is influenced by how I feel just as much as the other way around. My solution: try not to think too much, just hike. And so I did.Continue Reading "UPDATE: The area of Dubrovnik, island Mljet and Pelješac peninsula"
At the end of the month I’d like to look back on where I’ve been, what I did and how I felt. Usually I upload my Instagram photos in the “Looking Back” blogpost, but the second half of October I hardly had any internet. So, no Instagram updates. Because I want my posts to be chronological and it took me quite a while to catch up, I delayed this post. We’re halfway November, but here’s me looking back on October.Continue Reading "Looking back on October: From Artic Cold to Indian Summer"
When I camp in front of a church I usually feel comfortable. It can go two ways. The positive scenario is that being around people, near a village for example, gives me the idea to be protected. The other scenario is that people with bad intentions know where to find me. You never know for sure in which scenario you’ll end up in, but I kind of learned to trust my gut feeling. And that got me pretty far.Continue Reading "Gut feeling, being lucky and the sea"
From Vrbanj I went down to the sea. To Herceg Novi. With pain in my heart I skipped Subra’s amphitheatre. Too much wind. A warm wind, but still too windy to go for an exposed klettersteig-hike-climb. At mountainhut Vratlo I was in doubt, maybe I could try to go from there. But no, that wouldn’t be the same. I mean, I could hike to the peak of Subra, but I would still miss the spectacular climb and that’s what this stage is all about. This will be another place I sooner or later come back to.Continue Reading "Staring at the Sea"
I’m not much of a mile-maker, but last few weeks I’ve been walking in circles, exploring, climbing, bouldering, jeep touring and most of all: I’ve been chilling so much that I’m up for some real long distance hiking again. I want to get back to my hiking rhythm. EAT SLEEP HIKE REPEAT. Also, if I want to finish all Via Dinarica trails this year, I’d better get on moving, because days are rapidly getting shorter.Continue Reading "EAT SLEEP HIKE REPEAT"
Lately I’ve been reading trail reports of some of this years Via Dinarica hikers. Megan and Brittanie for example. I love to read about their experiences, how they hike it, how they like it – or not – and how they write about it. Both these girls write about how they feel just as much as they write about the trail itself. That’s what I like and probably what I’m trying to do myself. I’m struggling with finding words in English though. My vocabulary is too small to express myself the way I do in Dutch. Therefore trail reports in English are a great way to learn.Continue Reading "DAY 123: About making miles and killing kilometers"
The last night of our boulder trip we camped near Treskavec monastery, a brilliant place. Actually it was my last night, the rest of the crew stayed, but I felt ready to continue hiking. To be on my own again. From the monastery I followed an easy going hiking trail down to Prilep. I snapped tons of photos, stopped and stared more than I walked. In a way Pelagonija reminded me of Mojave desert, but without Joshua trees. And slightly smaller. Nevertheless, an impressive landscape.
The flow took me to Prilep, a town in South Macedonia. Prilep is known for its tobacco and beer and for the boulders. Although I already had an idea what awaited me because I watched the 2014 Petzl Roc Trip video about bouldering in Prilep, but these mountains, these rocks, they left me speechless.Continue Reading "Bouldering in Prilep, Macedonia"
At the end of the month I’d like to look back on where I’ve been, what I did and how I felt. I’ll use my Instagram photos to do so. Here’s September’s photo story, another month in the Macedonian mountains. And a little bit of Ohrid.Continue Reading "Looking back on September: Dogs and Detours"
Now I’m in Ohrid I of course want to do some sightseeing. I want to, but at the same time I don’t. I find it hard to switch. It’s almost stressful. I probably do it all wrong, I just walk and walk and and then discover that I missed the most popular sight.Continue Reading "Sightseeing Ohrid"
At the end of the month I’d like to look back on where I’ve been, what I did and how I felt. I’ll use my Instagram photos to do so. Here’s August’s photo story, a real real sunny August in the Macedonian mountains. And a little bit of Prizren.Continue Reading "Looking back on August: Macedonian mountains"
The Macedonian Traverse is a hiking trail through the mountains of Western Macedonia. It runs from mountain hut Ljuboten to Crvena Voda or Ohrid if you don’t mind a roadhike at the end. Some see it as an extension of the Via Dinarica or promote it like that, but the Macedonian Traverse has an history of its own. In 1975 a bunch of Macedonian mountaineers set the trail as the “First Macedonian Traverse” or “Prva Makedonska Transverzala”. There’s a documentary of their undertaking where they (try to) hike the traverse in summer ánd winter.Continue Reading "TRAILNOTES: My Macedonian Traverse, a mountain pathway"
After a fairly late start I left Popova Shapka, crossed the ski piste and walked the makadamroad to Bogovinjsko Ezero. This route goes more or less parallel of the hiking trail to Titov vrv. It’s way less demanding and much more “in the fields”. And thus there are sheep. Heaps of sheep.Continue Reading "Heaps of sheep, dangerous dogs & one brown bear"
Shar mountain (Shara, Šar, Sharr, Sharri) has been on my list for years. Ever since I first read about the First Macedonian Transversal (Transferzala), a hiking trail that crosses the entire Shar mountain range, I had the wish to explore Shar mountain. I could try to describe what it looks like, but I suck at that. I don’t have the vocabulary and the words I make up probably won’t be much of a help. I’ll stick to sharing my personal experience and add a whole lot of photos to give you an impression. So here we go, here’s my “Exploring Shar Mountain Photo Story”.Continue Reading "Exploring Shar Mountain, a photo story"
First time I was in Prizren I wrote this: Prizren is definitely worth a visit. It’s a beautiful, old, vivacious town with mountains all around. I’ll definitely come back to be a real tourist, but for now hiking is on my mind.Continue Reading "Sightseeing Prizren"
The Via Dinarica in Kosovo is an extension of the Via Dinarica White Trail. When I hiked the White Trail two years ago I had no idea about this Kosovo part, maybe it didn’t even exist yet. I don’t know. What I do know now is that its a super beautiful route that is definetely worth to include.Continue Reading "TRAILNOTES: Via Dinarica in Kosovo"
At the end of the month I’d like to look back on where I’ve been, what I did and how I felt. Despite the fact that I’m really taking my time, I can’t escape the feeling that I can’t keep up with my own pace. I’m a slow traveller, still I need more time to sit and stare. Every day is an adventure, that’s how I like it. Not knowing what the day will bring. Live every minute, absorb every impression. To avoid an adventure overdose, I write.Continue Reading "Looking back on July: Serbia & Kosovo"
The Via Dinarica Green Trail in Serbia goes through the lower mountains north of the White Trail. Those lower mountains often look like hills, peaks aren’t as prominent as in Durmitor for example (or Prokletije!), but on the other hand the route often stays around the 1000 meter above sea level. In those “hills” there are many farms, villages and weekend houses, vikendica. Therefore the Green Trail in a way is much more alive.Continue Reading "TRAILNOTES: Via Dinarica Green Trail in Serbia"
Trailnotes & thoughts of a route that is connecting Višegrad with Tara National Park, the Serbian Via Dinarica Green Trail trailhead. Note that you have to go to the official border crossing point since there’s no agreement for hikers or whatsoever. So this actually is not a route, but more an attempt to “connecting the dots”.
At the end of the month I like to look back on what I did, where I was and how I felt. Usually I use my Instagram feed to do so, but the first half of this month I took a bit of a break, because I went back to The Netherlands. There I hugged my friends, witnessed (at) a wedding, spend time with my family and enjoyed the Dutch goods; patatje speciaal, biertje speciaal, 100% pindakaas, dropjes en kaas. Didn’t share this online, but here a short version will follow.Continue Reading "Looking back on June: from Dutch summer into Green Wilderness"
I’m in my tent. Camping at a wonderful place next to a church in the middle of a forest. There are picnic tables, there’s water and a lot of grass. In two months there will be a guesthouse as well, but for now that building is an unfinished building. They’re working on it though. I met the guys in charge earlier, they gave me permission to put up my tent here.Continue Reading "Worst night ever"
Jep, I’m hiking again. From Sarajevo I’m heading East on the Jahorina Trailrun Track to Višegrad. Those of you who follow me on Facebook might have read these notes before, yes I’m a bit lazy. Nevertheless I hope this post is either helpful or inspiring for whoever’s thinking of hitting the trail.Continue Reading "Hiking the Jahorina Trailrun Track from Sarajevo to Višegrad"
Although it’s very efficient to send your packages by bus instead of using the regular post service, travelling by bus can be challenging in Croatia. To avoid a long, complicated (maybe impossible) bus ride from Zagreb to Buško jezero, I decided to start hiking in Knin. I wanted to cross Dinara, Troglav and Kamešnica all the way through the mountains. The difficult logistics with public transport are more or less part of the adventure, but I would deal with that on my way back, I thought. That this relatively simple bus ride from Zagreb to Knin turned into a scandal is a sad, but unfortunately true story.Continue Reading "How a simple bus ride from Zagreb to Knin turned into a scandal"
It’s 00.27 my backpack is packed, GPS is up to date, launched my podcast and after this blog post I’m ready too. Ready for a little hike. Tomorrow I take the bus to Knin from where I hit the trail to Dinara. Gone hiking. Although I hiked across the entire Dinaric Alps, I haven’t been on Dinara yet. Or well, I was on the mountain, but not on the peak. A peak, the peak. Something to do with bad weather. I Thought it would be a nice way to open this years hiking season. Hiking Dinara. And when already I’m there, I might as well continue on the trail to Troglav and Kamešnica.Continue Reading "Gone hiking. Dinara, here I come! (+ my first podcast)"