This is fresh article after long term silence on this page so here is some preparation so I could seamlessly continue latter. Once I returned from Australia and spent some time with family I’ve moved to Brno to work there for nsc global at AT&T because I wanted to work again in my field and keep English level if possible. I met there a lot of great people and also a few friends from different places (like Vrato I met at Kaplan 🙂 ).
When I had some time and money I traveled a bit in Europe and I visited Slovenia’s highest mountain Triglav and also Pairs, England and I have been two times at Corsica and I would like to write something about this wonderful island.
The first time, I’ve been there in June to see the country and climb and we tasted magnificence of mountains, beaches and whole island. It happened that while I’s talking with my friend we spoke about trying this famous GR 20. My friend did not take it probably much seriously but you will see we did take our words and made them happen.
In the middle of May we and three other friend and 20 kilograms backpacks went there with own car from Brno as this was the easiest and the cheapest way how to arrive to the base camp. After some discussion was decided to go from south to north as we hoped for better weather and conditions on the north part (whole trail is divided to north and south part both about 90 kilometers long and it is split to 15 parts/days) which turned out to be a wrong. Full of energy we thought we should be able to made it in 12 days (French legionaries having some training need 9 days) because we made part of it on our first visit.
According to informations on the Internet those refuges on the trail which are the only place where you’re allowed to stay/sleep and you usually could eat or buy some food supplies are not manned till June which was also wrong for this south part as all of them were open and there were other hikers staying there as well. If only we knew this before we packed with us food for a week we could have our backpack a way smaller.
I can say we were lucky for a good weather since there were just a couple of light showers during a day and we got also all seasons in one day a the highest point as it was snowing such a nice snowflakes… I doubt I’ve seen similar during our winter.
The path is obviously possible walkable even earlier then all recommendations. However, if you want to make whole trek and are not prepared for winter alpine trekking then is worth to go even latter then beginning of June (this really depends on the weather conditions) as this year I doubt that the north part was open even at least it was not open/recommended when we arrived to Vizzavona.
So when we learned that we cannot start the north part since we haven’t had any crampons or gear like that we take a train to Corte were we enjoyed a day off and then choose a backup solution to walk from to the east cost by Mare a Mare trail.
Unfortunately in Corsica they probably use only orange color to mark paths other then GR 20 so it happened that third day there when we decided to walk as far as possible to get closed to the sea we get to the end of the path and bit lost. This was the time for compass and we took the straight direction to the east hoping we would find road or village behind the ridge. As we hadn’t had best luck this day as we got higher there were clouds so we could see only back to Corte but nothing else to help with localization. Also by a sake we turned to be on the highest hill around (something above 1,700 m high) but as we couldn’t see around we decided to go downhill to learn where we are rather then taking possibly better walk on the ridge.
What I did not mentioned during that day we got two dogs as they joined us in one village because we stroked them and then didn’t managed to leave us so the next day once we arrived to first village it took us few hours to return them back home we’re lucky as one of them had name and number on the collar anyway the lesson is do not stroke,feed or show any sympathy with local dogs if you don’t want to care about them for rest of your trip and then struggle with returning them home. We met several other people with the same problem and since people there speak mainly French it wasn’t easy for us to resolve this.
And on this day we were outvoted and walked to the sea by road which was tedious once we were there we spent few more nice day around.
I can say this is really though trail and it show us a beauty of the island and also proved our equipment which did not turn good to mine old and my friend’s new shoes. Also one of borrowed trekking poles cannot be folded as much as before.
Here is a link to the gallery from this experience but there are also other pictures on my Picasa from past two years.
|Korsika(GR20 Sud) 5.13|