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Phespirit goes to Italy
Lago del Predil     May 2005

The town of Kranjska Gora in the far northwest corner of Slovenia is only a few hours' walk from both the Austrian and Italian borders. Unfortunately for Phespirit, several days of pounding the Slovenian footpaths around the Julian Alps had reduced his feet to a strained and blistered ruin, precluding him from further pedestrian thrills such as cross-frontier hiking. Thus, he entered Italy by coach.

Lago del Predil is a vast, unspoiled, tree-hemmed lake; picturesque and sparkling on a hot sunny day. Disappointingly, the combination of knackered feet and limited time meant that Phespirit was unable to walk any significant distance around its shore. Instead he sat for a brief while, relaxed and recouperated, peaceful and quiet, and all was well.

The lake is said to be one of the coldest in this part of Europe. Phespirit gained confirmation simply by dipping his fingers in the water, but a few hardy Italians were prepared to brave the glacial temperatures and get fully immersed for a swim. Good luck to them.

Being a just stone's throw from Slovenia, the natural character of the lake and its surrounding landscape is pretty much identical to that of its neighbour. The only obvious differences are man-made: road signs in Italian, and a lakeside restaurant that only accepts Euros. In spite of all this sameness it was nice to see somewhere different.

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