Climbing Veľký Rozsutec in the winter

Hey guys!

My alarm clock rang at 4.45am on Saturday. I get up pretty fast when I know that something big is coming. I jumped out of bed a made my sweet eggs, without which I can’t leave my apartment these days. I put on insulated leggings, my ClimaHeat t-shirt, packed my backpack with crampons and camera and got going. I started heading towards Mala Fatra (in Slovakia), where I’ve wanted to go for a really long time. 

After endless discussion with Adam (who I know only via Instagram and who is a pro in Mala Fatra), I decided to climb Velky Rozsutec. I got on the parking lot around 10am and started walking. The path went through the woods for the first two hours, which I consider as the necessary & boring part of every hike, so I always try to pass it really fast, so I have more time for taking pictures up on the summit. I had a tough time because the path was covered by ice. I made to the signpost Medziholie, from where I was supposed to do the real hike to the rocky mountain. There was a huge sign saying “avalanche area”, so I smiled when I thought of myself how I was assuring everyone that there are no avalanches in Mala Fatra hahaha:) I put on my crampons and started climbing the steep hill.

The path went along the ridge and on each side there was a precipice, so I had to be extremely careful not to fall down. The path was so steep, that I had to hold the cold rocks and tree branches, however after another hour I was standing on the top of the mountain. As soon I as got there, there were two young guys passing me a bottle of vodka right away. It was half empty, so I was really wondering how the hell they’re gonna get down safely. The wind was blowing really strongly and I would guess that the temperature was around -10°C. It was already past 4pm, so I didn’t have much time for shooting. I forgot my flashlight at home, so I wanted to avoid going down in the dark. 

Other than the wind, the weather was absolutely great, so I took some pictures, had a snack and started heading down. I was stopping every 10 seconds for a picture, because the sky was getting more and more beautiful. I got to the signpost on the sunset time. I sat down for a few minutes and stared at the gorgeous sunset, and Stoh mountain. I didn’t ever wanna get back to the car, if I could, I would just stay here at least for a week. Originally I wanted to sleep in the tent, but when I found out that it was supposed to be freezing really hard, I left the tent at home and said to myself that it would be more convenient to explore the area first in order to find out if it’s even possible. 

I got to my car when it was already dark, of course. There was another 5 hours of driving, so I got back to Prague around midnight and passed out in my bed immediately. 

I drove about 1000 km in one day and hiked Rozsutec. Sounds crazy, right?! But this is me. I love these kind of spontaneous trips! Someone goes to a party on Saturday, I climb the mountains, haha:)) 

This whole hike I did in my new Sorel boots, which are definitely not hiking boots, I juts wanted to test them in this kind of weather, because it is said, that they’re the warmest shoes in the world. Since the weather forecast said -15°C and my feet are always frozen no matter how many socks & which shoes I wear, I wanted to try them in snow and frost. Well, what is said, is true! Even though I struggled through deep snow for about 4 hours, my feet were really dry & warm. No frost bites like in my regular hiking boots. The only disadvantage was that they were pretty slippery in a steep hill and on ice, which makes sense since they’re not real hiking boots. 

Anyways, Rozsutec mountain enchanted me so much, that I made a resolution, that I will climb all the summits in Mala Fatra mountains till the end of this year’s winter. On the next weekend, if the weather cooperates, I’m planning on hiking the Stoh mountain & Pekelnik mountain, and I’m gonna be sleeping in the tent! Finally! 

And what about you guys? According to the statistics, a lot of my readers are Slovak, so let me know if any of yall have ever been here!