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 "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"
Primorska Planinarska Transverzala Montenegro

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"
Shkodër, Albania

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"
Ohrid lake Kališta

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.

Continue Reading "On my own again"

Dark thoughts, 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"
Hiking Titov Vrv

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"

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”.

Continue Reading "Connecting the dots… Hiking from Višegrad to and through Tara National Park, TRAILNOTES"

A walk in the clouds

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"
Sun before the Storm,  Rogatica

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, TRAILNOTES Via Dinarica Green Trail"
BLOG Gone hiking, Dinara here I come

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)"
BLOG | Looking back on February

At the end of the month I’d like to look back on what I did, where I’ve been and how I felt. My Instagram feed gives a pretty good impression, so I decided to make a photo essay each month. In February I gave a little talk about my hiking trip from Amsterdam to Sarajevo, I hiked and hiked and hiked and I moved back to Zagreb. Curious what it looks like? Well here’s my “Looking back on February” photo-essay. Enjoy.

Continue Reading "Looking back on February: From Amsterdam to Zagreb into a White World"
Looking back on January 2018

Standing still. Looking back. 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. Usually my Instagram pictures give a pretty good impression, but in January I took a little bit of a social media break. Not completely, but enough to find some gaps in my Instagram feed. So, I’ll add some other photos and videos in this month overview as well. Here we go, looking back on January 2018.

Continue Reading "Looking back on January: Short hair, short walks and an epic birthday adventure"

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 November where I stayed two weeks in Sarajevo before I took my bike for a ride to the Croatian coast. An exciting month full of social stuff, warm showers, blue skies and new opportunities. Scroll down to find out more!

Continue Reading "Looking back on November: Sightseeing Sarajevo & a Bikeride to the Croatian Coast"
BLOG | From Amsterdam to Sarajevo ON FOOT

From Amsterdam to Sarajevo on foot

The 24th of March I left Amsterdam to hike for a while. “Walking back to the Balkans”. Why? Because I can, because I like hiking. Because it’s slow, because it’s a perfect way to really see a country. To feel and experience. Because I feel good, being “on the road”. And because I thought it would be a good idea to (re)discover my own country, before heading off to the Balkans. So, I walked. I walked back. From Amsterdam to Sarajevo, on foot.

Continue Reading "Did it! From Amsterdam to Sarajevo ON FOOT"