The occasion:

For her birthday, a friend gave Alica an overnight stay in a hotel in Saxon Switzerland – for two people and two dogs. As it is getting quite cold this time of the year, a nice present. We will try winter camping, but once you have an opportunity for a warm bed… use it. Around the hotel there’s an endless amount of nice hikes. We decided for the route Tyssa Walls – Herkules columns from Rosenthal-Bielatal, 18.5km. We wanted to start hiking at 11am.

We calculated, that eventhough Josi ha a bad cold that day, we should be able to do 4km per hour. 20km devided by for equals 5 hours, easily doable before dusk.

Starting

Alica forgot to make the maps available offline. What a mistake, as we realized, that there is no internet connection throughout the whole area. Thinking back of the old times with paper maps… Oh well, first of all, driving there became a little difficult, as there was a road closure and we couldn’t easily navigate around it.

So we thought, no problem, let’s hike 2 more kilometers and park at the road closure. Our german correctness might have been a little too much here –  when we walked along the closed road, cars were driving past us. Anyways, walking keeps you fit. When we got to the actual start of our route, the next closure awaited us right there. The bridge we had to take to get on the trail, was broken.

The journey is the destination

So we balanced across a log that we saw was laying on the river. Our appearance might not have been very elegant, but our feet stayed dry.

The little path was wonderful and we passed by some climbers. As Dràgàm likes to act as a strong protector and therefore behaves in unpredictable ways when seeing strangers, he was on a long leash for this hike.

After walking for a while, we realized that our GPS dot didn’t really align with the actual route. But we liked the trail so this didn’t bother us too much. Although we missed the first sight on the route, the Benno caves. But we saw some amazing rocks, one of them looked like a face.

Of course we used the scenery to take a couple dog pictures. Luckily, both of them enjoy it, provided that we have enough treats 🙂

We walked on, and eventhough it was sunday, we didn’t see a lot of people. The rough direction was right, but looking at our GPS we saw that we went slightly too much northwards.

Querfeldein – Cross country

We decided to go after our name “Querfeldein”, cross country. The dogs enjoyed going through all the shrubberies through the forest.

We managed to stay on the given route for about one kilometer, then we saw a sign pointing towards “Tyssa Walls”. As this trail appeared to be nicer than the original one, we followed the sign. A good choice for now, as we were in the middle of nature. A little irritating to be confronted with warning signs though. We couldn’t read them, they were czech.

There was nobody to ask what they mean, so we just went on. Later we found out, it means “Attention, state border”. It was the path along the german-czech border.

Alica began to worry about missing ouut on even more sights than just the Benno caves. Slightly out of hope, she said “I don’t think we’re gonna find the Typhus rock today… or what were they called?!” But the trail was nice, the dogs had fun, and so we continued.

Tyssa Walls

And suddenly – we were at the Tyssa Walls! We noticed more and more people around us and took some pictures in the awesome landscape.

The rock formations were truly astonishing. We weren’t quite sure what the numbers on the rocks meant though. We later found out that there was a booklet with explanations to the rocks, that refer to the numbers. Anyways…. we got our own impression.

Again and again we met other people, but there was no problem with the dogs or people or anything at all. There was always enough space and we found places to discover a couple hidden spots in the rocks.

On this picture, Dràgàm couldn’t be convinced to go into the little cave where Alica is sitting. We’d love to know, why that was. Some caves are no problem:

Others he doesn`t want to get close to. Our theory is, that there might be bats inside, that he can hear and we can not?!

The route at Tyssa Walls is also good for older dogs, as there is almost no change of elevation or stairs, and you can park the car pretty much directly at the rocks.

The way back

After going the rock loop, we got on our way back. There was only one hour of sunlight left and 8 kilometers to go. We had to hurry a bit. We decided to take the most direct route, eventhough that meant to go along the road for a bit. In a little village in Czech, a small dog popped up, no leash, no owners. We weren’t sure how Dràgàm would react, as the little one was male too. To our surprise, Dràgàm discovered his gay side.

Of course, you can see it as a sign of dominant behaviour. The other dog didn’t seem to be bothered by it (the opposite was the case, he always got ready for Dràgàm again), so at some point we put an end to it after wiping the tears from laughing out of our eyes. And off we went to the car. Josi, who usually walks a bit faster than Alica (just because her longer legs of course), had troubles to speed up this time, as she wasn’t quite fit due to her cold. But, she knows us and had a head lamp in her bag. The last hour we walked in pitch black darkness.

At around 6 we reached the car.

The hotel

So we went to the hotel. We were hungry and wanted to test the Spa. Dràgàm and Leni usually don’t bark a lot, so we didn’t think it would be a problem to leave them in the room alone for dinner. But, they were not that amused when we wanted to leave them there right away. Dràgàm barked hysterically when we went out. We went to the restaurant and ate our Sauerbraten, hoping he would shut up, and hoping that there were other people in the hotel with dogs too, so it wasn’t too obvious that the barking dogs were ours. Now and then we went silently out of the restaurant to the hallway to listen. After a while, it got quieter at our room’s door. When we were finally back in the room, we knew, we could only go to the spa one by one, with one of us always staying with the dogs. The hot tub was not working, the sauna was empty and everything was in the dark basement, so we quickly were back all together and relaxed for the night.

 

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