Trip to High Tatras, Slovakia
It has been taking over two years. Several visits to the Krkonoše Mountains, where this species nests, brought only a record in the birdwatcher’s diary. But a good photo? No way. It’s as always. The happiness, the intuition, is at the right time in the right place.
This year’s September, after many years, a climbing trip to the High Tatras took place. The main task was to climb the perpendicular walls and steep overhangs, which requires pulling a heavy backpack at all times. Perhaps the intuition, perhaps a pious desire, whispered to me that I would add to this climbing material, apart from the basic photographic technique, another kilograms in the form of Canon 400/5.6 USM. What if !
The traditional train journey has convinced me that there has really been no change in the Czech – Slovak express lines over the past 40 years. Still, there is some certainty in uncertain times. Even on a long journey from Štrbske pleso to mountain hut under Rysy summit no news, but there is a grateful one. It’s still like years ago on the hill, an endless idea of a heavier and heavier backpack. The High Tatras did not show a friendly part. On the way up was the clouds, the wind, the temperature just slightly above zero. Under Waterfall, he began to drizzle a little. In this wet dwarf, some mosses and grasses grow rather than in the wider area. And I was at that moment at the right time in the right place. After a dark purple moss a few yards from me produced the PODHORNÍ PODHORNÍ (PRUNELLA COLLARIS) in all its splendor. The card began to fill in the photographs I had longed for more than two years. Several hours after the train ride in Štrba.
I do not know who invented the generic czech name “podhorní”. In this part of the High Tatra (Frogs lakes valley), the soldier stayed mainly in the top parts of the mountain shields, eg right at the top of the ridges and its hillsides. There I was lucky there two days later, and there were other good shots. The mobs wandered even around the cottage, but only early in the morning and then before sunset, when the crowds of tourists were not disturbed. The light conditions, taking into account the bad weather, were inexorable.
The best conditions for photography were, however, clearly at the local latrine, which is a place with a magnificent view of the Mengus valley. If you are able to ignore the suspicious views of the visitors of this facility and the odors that have nothing to do with the aroma of mountain air, you can “catch” quite nice pictures of mountain pipits.