We had two days off in a row, so we decided to do another two day hike. This time we decided to take Silvia and Rocco with us. We chose the route at Alica’s garden having Gulasch. We thought the Elsterperlenweg might be nice – 72 km through the “thüringische Vogtland”.
This time we thought we learned from the first big hike, the Fichtelbergmarsch. We packed less food, Josi took her solar panels to prevent cellphone battery (i.e. GPS-) death and Alica bought new shoes: barefood trekking shoes. Well equipped we drove to our starting point in Greiz.
To Roccos delight and Drágáms horror a cat snaked around Josis legs.
After everybody was calmed down, we started.
Silvia and Josi were making fun of Alica’s bag the whole time. She bought a throw-up tent and attached it to her backpack with dog leaches. Josi and Silvia discussed whether to paint a shooting target or a stop sign on it.
When we chose the trail, we were looking forward to doing a hike that didn’t involve to many mountains, after the long Fichtelbergmarsch last time. We should have read the fine print or looked into the elevation profile.
Sporty Silvia just said: “It is low mountain range, wasn’t this obvious?!” No it was not. Well, no choice, we went up. On one side of the path there were tons of blueberries. Now Josi was in paradise and thought about staying there until the others would come back the next day.
The dogs liked it and we were rewarded with nice viewpoints.
After two hours of hiking we thought it might be time for a little breakfast. Silvia and Drágám were all excited.
The others were happy to have a break, too.
So we started walking again. Now it was not so hilly anymore. We passed little tracks in the field with beautiful flowers.
Silvia felt like being in the land of milk and honey as we passed a lot of fruit trees. Spontaneously she grew a third breast.
Besides the landscape, we were fascinated by the people living there. Everybody said hello friendly, and whished a nice hike. When we asked for water, there was no problem and someone even offered us a camp spot in his garden, but it was around 2pm so we wanted to keep on walking.
The landscape now changed between open fields and small paths through the forest – small if you carry a circular target on your back.
Finally we got to the river Elster and everybody agreed on taking a break here.
Especially the dogs enjoyed it and still had enough energy to play in and around the water.
Not only our dogs like water. Long before you realize you’re just close to some sort of river, Silvia is already swimming.
Refreshed we went on.
Seeing signs everywhere, we thought that there was no chance we could get lost, and so barely looked at our hiking app.
Well, that much can be said, we still managed to get lost! To date we have no idea where we missed the path. But as often in life, the detours led us to many beautiful places. We first got to a herd of cows with many young animals.
Much to Alica’s concern, some young bulls were standing outside the fence, right in the middle of the road.
So, pass by quickly. We were still thinking our route went straight on.
At least Alica, as a city child, was very happy to have passed the cows in good health. The others, including the cows, were more relaxed.
Then we got to the next part of paradise!! An alley full of cherry trees. All kinds of cherries!! And so many!
Immediately, the cherries were picked.
Alica and the dogs watched from a safe distance.
With full stomachs, we reached a junction and found out:
Not only were we on the wrong side of the river, but also a few kilometers off the path. However, we were quite happy as otherwise we would have never found this wonderful cherry trees.
After some discussion about the possibilities to go from here, we decided that it would probably be best to walk along the road for a while and then walk to Berga/Elster on a route that was originally planned for the way back.
In a little village there we were starred at by Alpakas.
We said hello to a horse living together with a cow.
When we reached Berga/Elster and found an open café, we were so happy. The feast started.
The dogs got a few treats and used the time to rest.
It was clearly too late to walk all the way to the end of the route to Wünschendorf. It was already 7pm and we needed a place to rest. So, we took the backpacks and walked on.
After we passed Clodra, Rocco started to look a little weak, so we started to search a lonely place at the water. We quickly found something nice.
After we had filled the three hungry mouths, the tents were set up. Alica was very proud to present her throw-up tent. Now the target was transformed into sleeping space within seconds. All in pink.
Silvia’s tent construction work was boycotted by Leni, who believes everything on the floor is her blanket.
Even a closed tent can be seen as a seat. Anything is a seat, as long as it is soft.
After a while, the seating conditions were clarified.
Now we started cooking.
After an extensive dinner we went into the tent and found that the throw-up tent was a bit smaller than Josi’s tent. Silvia went into her tent with Rocco, Alica and Josi shared the bed with Leni and Dràgàm.
Falling asleep took a bit longer this time – Drágám constantly changed his sleeping position and preferrably let himself fall on Josi’s head. Every noise from the forest had to be answered with a growl. Only when he layed between Josi and Alica under the sleeping bag, it got quieter. More or less. “Is this Rocco growling in the other tent there?” Josi asked. “He usually never growls?!” Alica turned around and said, “This is Silvia, she’s snoring.” Oh. Well then. Good night.