Karkonosze (Karkonosze Mountains), Poland@2013

     Late in the 2013 I went with some work friends to the Karkonosze National Park (Polish: Karkonoski Park Narodowy). It is a National Park in the Karkonosze Mountains in south western Poland, along the border with the Czech Republic. On Friday evening, in the pouring rain, we took our first hike to the Strzecha Akademicka mountain hostel to spend the night there. In the morning the weather was much better.

On the Saturday, we went to Śnieżka (1,603.30 meters a.s.l. (5,260.2 ft)), after that we stopped for dinner at Luční bouda (Czech Rep. side). Quite nice place but overcrowded at that time. Then we continued our hike on Polish-Czech Friendship Trail. Weather got sunny and windy and the views were breathtaking. Mały and Duży Staw lakes looked amazing from the top of the trail. The Park is located in the highest part of the Sudetes.

Above - on the way to mountain Śnieżka. Below - Hostel Samotnia near Mały Staw lake.

Karkonosze National Park. Mountain Hostel Strzecha Akademicka on the right.

The Pilgrims (on the left) is a granite rock formation with height up to 25 meters. Named like that because of its resemblance to the group of people. The legend says, Pilgrims were once sinful travellers that were turn into stone by the Mountain Spirit, disappointed by their behaviour. If they ever reach the sea it will be the end of the world. Karkonosze National Park.

We spent the night at Odrodzenie mountain hostel. Sunday welcomed us with huge fog and visibility just over couple of meters. We walked in it for about half a day, following our trail leading to Szrenica mountain (1362 m a.s.l.) from were we went straight down to Szklarska Poręba city.

View on Szrenica mountain, Karkonosze National Park.

View from Szrenica mountain, Karkonosze National Park.

View from Hala Szrenicka, Karkonosze National Park.

View from Hala Szrenicka, Karkonosze National Park.

Owl Mountains

Like I said couple of days ago, here are some more pics from my short hiking trip to the Great Owl (polish "Wielka Sowa"). When you start from Przełęcz Walimska it's really easy to get to the top (which is 1014 metres in altitude). You can see the path in pink colour.

As you can see below, the weather was sunny and warm (well.. for the autumn), but also windy and partially foggy which gave the nice touch to some of the photos. Enjoy! :)

View from tower on the top of the Great Owl.

View from tower on the top of the Great Owl.

Hooded Crow

     The Hooded Crow (Corvus cornix) (also called hoodiecrow) is a Eurasian bird species in the crow genus. Widely distributed, it is also known locally as Scotch crow, Danish crow, and corbie or grey crow in Ireland. Found across Northern, Eastern and Southeastern Europe, as well as parts of the Middle East, it is an ashy grey bird with black head, throat, wings, tail and thigh feathers, as well as a black bill, eyes and feet. Like other corvids it is an omnivorous and opportunistic forager and feeder.

Captured in Wrocław ZOO last Sunday. :)

Table Mountains

This weekend, on Saturday, I took a quick trip to the Table Mountains, to Szczeliniec Wielki. Table Mountains is the region I like very much. Peaks are not very high, so you don't have to be in a very good shape to climb them. Forest region is magical with all the rocks and paths between them. This was my third time there. I actually hoped for a little more cloudy weather, but the day turned out to be quite sunny and warm, so no foggy photos that day. ;)

View on the Czech Republic side from the view point, near mountain hostel.

View on the Czech Republic side from the view point, near mountain hostel.

To see this view, you need to climb 665 stairs, but it's definitely worth it. Beautiful both summer and winter (though climbing there in winter can be quite dangerous). The path starts in village Karłów, where you can park your car, and is about 5km long.

Firstly you just climb stairs in the forest (with some rocks for company) to reach height, then you walk more between rocks, sometimes the path gets very narrow, so I wouldn't advise it for someone with claustrophobia. Good boots are a "nice to have" thing because even during summer, the moisture from the rocks is quite strong so path is always wet somewhere.

Map of the path - yellow-red.

Map of the path - yellow-red.

I'm back!

I am back from my vacation trip to Sweden. Photos will emerge in next couple of weeks. Here's the first one from city of Malmö. The tall building is called Turning Torso, opened in 2005 after city lost it's previous symbol, which was the Kockums Crane. The city itself is beautiful and very IKEA-ish, but in a good way.

Transient

Kondratowice

     Some time ago I saw on one of internet forums lovely photographs from a small lake. I already knew I need to see this place with my own eyes. When I acquired it's location, I picked a day with a good weather and drove there to watch the sunset.

     I didn't find out how is this lake called, but the village it is nearest to, it's Kondratowice. The lake itself is very small, the road there goes through fields and it's quite bumpy. There are some fishes inside (there were a few fisherman there), also a number of mosquitoes was very high and eventually made me leave. But the view was definitely worth it. I also took the chance to practice long time shots. The mountain in the distance is called Ślęża (718 m a.s.l.).