“I’m on my way to Slovenia. Hitch-hiking the last bit, it’s raining cats and dogs.” Jep, I’m cheating. Either I had to walk 80 km in two days (in the rain) or I had to tell my contact in Ilirska Bistrica, Slovenia, that I would arrive a few days later. I don’t like to be late and I don’t like to let people wait for me. But most of all, I don’t like to walk in the pouring rain. All day long. Day in, day out.

I had the intention to hike from Snežnik to Snežnik, but that would be an illegal border-crossing. I’ve been strongly recommended NOT to do that for several reasons. Then I set out a route from Snežnik to Rupa, but when I arrived in Risnjak it started to rain. Big time. During a small good-weather-window, I run to Risnjak Vrh, but after that it rained, rained and rained.

Not much fun. The rain made it impossible to go to planinarski dom Hahlić, too wet, too cold, too slippery, too much wind. Just too much rain. No good. Uhh yes, I’m a lazy good weather hiker and thát I actually do enjoy. Sitting out the bad weather talking to people, reading, writing and pondering. That’s me on the trail. Therefore I need time, more time than I at this moment had…

A couple from Zagreb who also stayed in planinarski dom Sušak offered me a ride to a place somewhere on the road to the border. Oehhh, tempting. Hitch-hiking to Slovenia, not what I had in mind, but it would solve all logistical-time-schedule-bad-weather issues. So I agreed and got in the car.

I will come back, I definitely want to hike and see everything all the way, but not now. Actually, I haven’t done too bad so far. I skipped the asphalt road between Knin and Gračac and took a “safety ride” to escape a scary guy in a creepy little town 10 km before Žabljak. I can say that I’m pretty proud and happy the way it all goes.

Until I ended up on a gas-station. Gas-stations are depressing, even more depressing when there is no way out and only a McDonald’s to warm up. It took me four hours to find a ride. Really. About one million cars raced by before a friendly Slovenian family finally brought me to Ilirska Bistrica.

So, I’ve learned my lesson. Real hikers hike through the rain. Not sure what I am, but certainly not a hitch-hiker!

Joyful arrival in Ilirska Bistrica
Joyful arrival in Ilirska Bistrica

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Hiking & Biking the Balkans

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