13-May-2017 -- This is the second out of two reports reaching confluence points during a bicycle trip from Priština, the capital city of Kosovo, to Podgorica (Подгорица), the capital city of Montenegro. The story continues from 43°N 21°E.
What a big day! In the early morning I intended to start cycling with the first daylight at 5 AM from my hotel in Mitrovica in the neighbouring country Kosovo. However, after getting up I found myself locked in my hotel – in the backyard house. I considered jumping out from a balcony, but such a jump would have been very dangerous. At the ground level all windows and doors were trellised. I continued my search for an escape, but there was none. At one side the balcony was facing a street. From there I had to wait until someone appeared whom I could ask to call the hotel staff that was hopefully in the front building. But at such early hours no one appeared in the street. So I started shouting and screaming – until the hotel staff woke up and opened the door.
The direct route from Mitrovica to this confluence point cannot be travelled, because the shortest route would cross Serbian territory, but the border between Kosovo and Serbia is firmly closed and controlled by KFOR. So I had to circumvent Serbia to the south via Ivdel and Rozaje. On this route, I had to climb 4 mountain passes. The highest of them was at the border between Kosovo and Montenegro with 1800 m altitude.
Actually, I didn’t expect to visit this confluence at the same day. But when I reached the Lim River valley at the road E65, I realized that it could be possible to arrive before nightfall. I had to climb one more pass until I reached the village Korita which is located 2 km from the confluence point.
I went through the village that doesn’t have a centre but consists of single farm houses that are spread all over the valley. In the middle of it, there is the mosque as the most distinct feature. At the last house I abandoned my bicycle and started running the last kilometre to the confluence point. Since I had no time to think about the best route, I simply went beeline though the forest. This direct route turned out to be the slowest with steep ascends and descends.
At 7:31 PM – just before sunset – I found the confluence point in a spruce forest with a relatively mild inclination.
When I returned to my bicycle it was getting dark already. I had given priority to reach the confluence and not thought about where to spend the night. The village Korita was very quiet. When a jeep arrived, I asked where I could spend the night. Instead of an answer I had to drink Slivovitz. But then the four men in the car asked me to follow them – which I did. After a while, they stopped and pointed to two farmhouses: there you can stay. When I asked which one, they said: it doesn’t matter, you can ask anyone here. So I went to one of the farm houses. At the beginning, the farmer family was very distrusting – in particular because we didn’t have a common language. But after communicating for a while – including the use of Google Translate, the atmosphere became cordial. I got a great meal and my own room with a nice bed. The next day I cycled to Podgorica from where I flew back home another day later.
CP Visit Details:
- Distance to a road: 1 km
- Distance to a track: 150 m
- Distance of bicycle parking: 1 km
- Time to reach the CP from Korita: 40 minutes
- Time at the CP: 7:31 PM
- Measured height: 1328 m
- Minimal distance according to GPS: 0 m
- Position accuracy: 5 m
- Topography: mountainous
- Vegetation: spruce trees
- Weather: sunny, 20° C (felt temperature)
- Given Name: The Slivovitz Confluence
The story finishes here.