It's Thursday, April 2020...

The first wave of insulation is currently underway in the Czech Republic. Most shops are closed and people should not gather. The opposite of this - travel to the countryside - is allowed. Even required through keeping fit and healthy!

My neighbor and I are leaving our isolation in Tisá and heading towards St. Aspen, Bohemia. It's time to finally tick off the downhill, which we have neglected for years, as the spring condition in the past years belonged mainly to the Tatras or the Alps.

Around 10:00 we park in Bear's Knee. Except for a white round sign with a red border at the entrance, there is no one here. We slowly pack up and wait for the crew from the next village to arrive. We have a snack, which is spiced with dust by the just arriving pair of Honzin and Tomas.

It's beautiful warm spring weather. The birds are chirping and the shaken bottle is slowly foaming towards the ground!

The temperature is rising higher and higher by the minute, but we know we'll need it today.

After the last song on the playlist, with our boards on our backs, we head towards "SNOW PITS".

The climb ends at the Medvědí boudy, where we put on our harnesses and slide upwards in luxurious spring firn. A little below the top, somewhere near Kamenná studánka, we have to hike a bit, but after a while we bypass the chains and rails of the lookout. A meeting starts, which chute shall we challenge?

We decide that, given the state of the snow, the best one is the lighted one - the eastern one. And so we slowly move towards it to the "border line".

There is no big guessing game about who will go first. Before I can get my camera ready, Honzin is already waving from the lower ball. So we all follow him down and assess that even the last one has some firn left. We decide whether it is good to challenge another one of the couloirs, but in the current situation we don't want to spike anything, and we choose to return to our homeland around the Vysoké Kolo. 

...and with another smashed can in hand, we enjoy the spring sunshine...

Text a Foto: Kuža


September 02, 2021 — Jara Sijka