The Carpathian allround Winter Adventure
Mario Cassela is a jurnalist, film producer, mountainguide and adventurer wich did a few important mountain winter traverses like Caucasus, Iranian Mountains from the turkisch to afgahn border. He also spend time on Himalayas, Alaska, Andes illustrating them thru his movies and books, spoting the bond and the stories behind and between the mountains and the people living on it, guiding turists or just enjoy being there.
Then came the Carpathian Range Mountains turn. He started in Bratislava and followed (mostly on skis) the Carpathian Ridge all the way to the Danube. This year he managed to traverse the Ukrainian and the Romanian part of the Carpathians.
He knew my colleague Iulian from Iulian Cozma outdoor Adventures since they had a ski tour in Romania, a few years ago. At the point the weather wasn’t that good and this time he came back with the hope that it will be better, especially for this much bigger project.
For me more than a month in the romanian mountains means something special. It’s all in the Head they say. You have the time to dive into it and to cut connections with the regular urban life. And I was with my thoughts, my heart and my body there. One month is a long time within everything can happen. Especially in such a country where the occurance is really written in the stars. You can live the pure happiness but you may also have to face hard challenges. Our tour sticked to the principle and we covered the most iconic mountains in Romania with everything they had to offer.
The 35 Days were filled with all the stuff a good complex tour could have and even more. Beside being in the mountains with good and bad weather, with good snow and less snow, we were in museums, in peoples houses being part of their lives for few days, we were on historical spots on the mountains wich made us feel like being part of the history, we enjoyed mountain huts or hotels and whathever crossed our way and adventure. Moments of enjoyment, excitement, worries, happines, tension were part of this adventure and add more colour to it.
After the first part in wich we descovered the Est Part of the Carpathian Range called also Carpatii Orientali, we met Marios group from Switzerland and spend a week with them in the mountains around Brasov but also had a hike on Tampa Mountain with a great panorama over Brasovs old town and then visited this beautiful middleage full of history town.
Then we got back to our schedule and kept discovering the Meridionali Carpathians wich are the most spectacular and demanding from Romania. A few more days of joy and then it happened. During one descend in Transylvanian Alps (Fagaras Mountains) I hit a piece of ice with the skis and got a knee injury. (Many thanks to Barcaciu Hut for the warm hearted help and care wich they add). We spend then one day in Sibiu to get the complete situation image. After getting the diagnosis – broken ACL, I continued as the Driver and Touristic Guide of our Tour.
Mario and Iulian went a few more time on some higher Mountain Ridge : Parang where they riched the Parangul Mare Peak and Retezat where due to the bad weather they had to turn around at the bottom of the Mountains.
We ended our journey spending a few beautiful days around Danube Mountains with brilliant weather and beautiful landscapes wich anounced somehow the begining of the spring with high temperatures and beautiful sun at the shore from the Danube River. It was an interesting feeling to get here in this so much different world from snowy ridges with majestic, rough and wild landscapes to calm, sunny and soft forests and waters generating more warm feelings. The cicle, as the journey were this way completed.
Mario Cassella has his own story and he is mixing it with the stories of the people and places he meet. Spending time with him was a journey not only thru spaces and places but also thru myself and I’m happy to have discovered new interesting corners of myself.
This mixture of nature, sport and culture during this allround tour made me more rich, more aware of our heritage, of our limits, beliefs, pains and hopes, of everything wich is part of one being a personalised individual.