At the Harlequins Orienteering Club Christmas raffle we were fortunate enough to win a week at our friend Charlie’s house in the Julian Alps, Slovenia. Our friends Tony and Catherine came along for the first three days.
Day one featured a climb up Krn, the mountain behind the house. After a somewhat exciting drive up to the road end, we set off through a wild flower-filled alpine meadow. This shortly led to a brutal climb of 800m or so to the high alpine, with a lovely hanging valley and a small lake. We stopped there for lunch and explored some WW1 remains.
From there we headed on up the valley to the pass at the top, with more wildflowers and occasional fortifications from the war. I’ve never seen a trail where the trail markers are artillery shells before!
The pass gave us our first views to the other side of the mountain and Triglav, the highest mountain in Slovenia, in the distance. It also revealed our destination, Krn, and the mountain hut clinging just below the summit. By this stage it was about 30 degrees, and we were looking forward to a cold beer before the long descent back to the car.
We commenced the steep final climb, only to discover that the mountain hut was being renovated and no beer was to be had. We stopped to admire the view from the summit, but it’s been quite hazy so far, so we couldn’t see far. By this stage we were a little short of water in the heat, so we commenced the descent with the promise of another—hopefully more useful—mountain hut at the bottom. The series of switchbacks seemed to go on forever, but apart from briefly being chased by cows we were soon at the hut and enjoying our well-earned reward!