For a long time we wanted to go for an overnight hike. So we got a tent, down sleeping bags, and a gas cooker.
The tent is made for two people. We are two people, dogs are not people. So they will fit for sure! Nevertheless, we planned a hike with only one night to start, as we didn’t want to test our friendship too much.
So for the first longer hike we wanted to do the closest one: the “Fichtelbergmarsch”, that’s the hike to the highest mountain of our state, Saxony.
We looked at different routes and decided for the version: short and crosscountry. 50 kilometers, 80 percent off the official trails. We started in Neukirchen close to Chemnitz. After making sure we had packed enough food (everyone of us could have fed three people for two days), we started with our two very excited dogs. (“Luggage means travelling, where are we going??”)
The first part was rather un-relaxed as we had to go on a narrow road through Klaffenbach. But, having passed this village, we were on a very nice path on a field. We hadn’t had breakfast before, so we decided to first take a quick break. Everything we eat, we don’t have to carry (at least not on our backs).
We noticed that hungry dogs are interested in fruit. Or was it the bread with cheese?!
Some hikers were laughing at us and said Hello. With full stomachs we went on to Burkhardtsdorf. There we would have to look for water, as we were thirsty and had only 0.5 out of 2 liters left. The dogs had got the major portion of it, though.
The path went on through a small forest, so we got some shade.
After some time we found a little mud puddle. All of a sudden the dogs were full of energy.
The dogs were refreshed, but the humans started to worry a little about their drinking water and the cellphone battery. The whole time we navigated with our cell phones, which sucked the power out of them. We had only brought a small powerbank. But navigation was important, as we could never tell the right route just from signs. Whenever we thought “That must be the way”, our unfriendly GPS woman said “NOOO!! Turn right, into this tiny, unnoticable path into the woods, which you didn’t even see before.”
After fighting through some shrubberies we got to Burkhardtsdorf. Now we needed water. Sunday in Germany – all stores are closed. The village seemed dead. We only discovered one man at the very end, cleaning his car. We asked him whether he would give us some tap water. He said he would fill our bottles. Josi joined him, Alica stayed outside with the dogs. The man was friendly, but his wife was stearing at Josi sceptically. Would she spy out the house and plan a burglary?!? Oh well. We were happy to go on with full bottles of water.
The dogs were happy about every single puddle that we passed.
The humans were less amused, Alica’s foot was eaten by a mud hole.
Still we were in a good mood, knowing that shortly we would arrive at a big lake, called “Geyerscher Teich”. Then we would take a break, swim, charge the cellphone at the kiosk…
We were so wrong. When we got to the lake, we saw HUGE crowds of people, and huge amounts of fences, signs, and rules.
Well, “if we ask nicely…” we thought, so we approached the first seemingly nice old lady, asking her whether there would be a place, where we and the dogs could go for a quick swim. We hadn’t noticed the self-selected village sheriff in the shape of a 65 year old man, materializing behind us. Loudly he stated that we and our dogs are not welcome in this great place of nature, and swimming and fun are generally forbidden. So we fought our way through the crowds at the official beach, which can be used only by humans, and only by those humans willing to throw their money into machines.
We got to the kiosk at the end, and at least here was a friendly worker who let us charge the phone. We had some ice cream and looked at the water…
On the first day, we wanted to get to Schlettau, as on the map this village seemed to offer a couple nice lakes. Also, we wanted to walk about 30km on the first day, and 20km on the second, taking into account all the “uphill” that would await us on the way to the mountain top.
We liked the path with it’s little streams and bridges.
While walking, we saw a little hill. Alica said, “well there is a bench, so there has to be a view!”. Up we went, and it was worth it! We were looking at the “Binge Geyer”, a landmark which evolved from massive rock slides. The landscape collapsed because of tin depletion in the hills.
After taking a break, we went on, less fit than a couple hours ago. The dogs seemed to be getting tired, too. They we walking rather slowly.
We almost gave up the hope for another refill of drinking water. But then we found a woman in Hermannsdorf, who had a garden hose in her hand. She filled our bottles with water, that, as we later realized, tasted like garden hose.
Walking on, our conversations now circled around the pressure pains on our hips from the backbags. Also the voice of our GPS seemed to get more and more annoyed and pissed of, the farther we walked.
About 9pm we made it to the place we wanted to stay at for the night. So we took off the packs, stretched and looked for a place to put our tents.
We soon realized that we were not as alone here as we thought we would be. At the first spot that we wanted to camp at, a fishermen came by and asked whether we “would have anything specific in mind here”. We hadn’t set up the tent yet, so Alica quickly replied “Uh…. we’ve been hiking for a while and just need a quick break here.” We knew we should’t set up the tent here, but neither could we walk on. So we thought – green tent, green bushes, 50m away from here will do.
For Leni, any fabric that’s on the ground, is her new spot to sit and lay on.
Alica: “FOUR of us are gonna sleep in here???”
There was no alternative, so we started cooking, which Leni supervised professionally.
Then we were ready to go to bed. After figuring out who goes into the tent first to avoid territorial troubles, we went to sleep.