You have to hand it to the Czechs. When hiking in the mountains, they do things right. How well I remember the first time we went hiking with our Czech daughter, Pavla, and her family. After toiling up the steep climb, wading through deep snow, slipping on the ice and marveling at the stamina of the locals we came to the summit. And a pub! Taking in the surprise registering on our faces, Pavla patiently explained that all such hikes terminate at similar establishments. After all, what would be the point otherwise? Good thinking. We decided on the spot that we liked hiking in the Czech Republic.
Our latest visit with Pavla included a stay in Morovka, where she and her family spend most weekends in husband Pavel’s family home. It is a beautiful spot in a valley situated in the Beskidy Mountains. And right from the doorstep there are numerous hiking options. Blessed with a perfect fall day featuring peak foliage and brilliant sunshine, we set out shortly after lunch with extended family members to tackle the hillside.
The air was crisp and cool, particularly in the shade of the towering trees. It was good incentive to keep moving. We weren’t the only hikers on the trail by any stretch. And nearly all were family groups. What impressed us most of all was the way the young ones carried on without complaint. The youngest in our group was only four, and she covered nearly the whole 5 kilometer distance uphill on her own. She definitely earned the piggy back ride she got on the way down. Those only a few years older hiked round trip with energy to spare. Clearly, they were raised on this stuff.
This particular hike delivered in style. There were multiple resting spots along the way, with plenty of beverage and food options to refresh the weary traveler. At the first, we paused long enough to indulge the children in a pony ride. Our destination was Chata Kotar, where we happily gathered around outdoor tables to enjoy the view. And lift a glass or two.
The views were as spectacular going down as they were on the way up. We couldn’t help marveling at our good fortune with the weather. And there was no better way to enjoy it than traipsing through the colorful, rustling leaves with our Czech family.