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Backpacks and blisters - the walking thread

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    Treibeis, you got it completely. Welcome aboard...

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      Fantastic day hike in the Slovak Mala Fatra today, up to Mincol, which comes quite far down on the list of highest peaks in the range, but still just about exceeds Ben Nevis. There's a cannon just below the summit, a remnant of the days when the Slovak partisans fought the Nazis in these hills. The communists later had it turned round to face west.

      I did go with a friend, but we didn't see one other walker, alpine skier or whatever, on the way up, at the summit, or on the way down. It was a beautiful day, with cloud down in the valley, but clear blue skies above.

      There's a ski-centre nearby (but still far enough away), so we could just about make out figures on the slopes. Crucially, we couldn't hear them, or indeed any sound other than the wind in the trees, the odd woodpecker, and deer (I trust they were deer and not bears) running through undergrowth.

      I've had a few winter hikes this season, but this was the first to offer a view of anything other than grey cloud at the top.

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