It is quite common that I don’t keep a promises that I do for myself. For instance after adventure week in Sierra de guara, I promissed myself that I’ll be having relaxed weekend. But I could not do it, even if my body was in desperate call for a weekend full of relaxation and sleeping, my head was full of noise that had to be vented somehow. And that’s why I decided I will be joining Friuli canyoning meetup close to Tomezzo. Everything started on Friday, but I had a group of guests I had to guide in Sušec, so I got to the place in the late afternoon. Sandi was already there and we made a plan: we do Rio Tralba the following day. It seemed like a good idea to me, since I remembered that you can use shuttle instead of walking uphill and then just have a downhill walk to the entry of the canyon.

But… Trip to my memory lane was a bit blurry. I had forgotten that the approach is not just downhill and that it takes an hour to get to water. First things first… My head was a mess at that day. 5 minutes into downhill walking I’ve realized that I’ve forgotten camera in my car. So I had to return to get it. But to be honest, I was quite happy that I had returned since I had a little warm-up hike to fight chilly weather.

When we reached the dam on Rio Alba the picture was different than I had remembered. We discovered that the dam is being cleaned of the gravel that was being accumulated over last decades since the barrier is there. That was quite a change.

Dam on Rio Alba that is being cleared of the gravel.

Then the proper hike to the canyon happened. I forgot how the path looked. It is really narrow and placed on the steep slope. About ten minutes into walking we’ve reached the spot where couple trees had fallen and the tack disappeared. But new one is already forming. Nothing special, nature always takes care that things are different and that the weakest trees are falling, making the space for the new ones. It is like in your life, people who doesn’t belong there leave and with their disappearance they make room for the new guys that you will meet in the future.

But it nearly happened that there would be no chance for new people to meet me. About half an hour on the trail, the trail had disappeared. Instead of the trail there was just a steep exposed rock that had to be crossed somehow. The last step on the path that I’ve made was a step too far. The ground started moving bellow my wight and the remainings of the path were bouncing of the rock into the depth of a canyon. I was about 20m steep drop, then some vegetation and then another 200 vertical meters and everything finished in the Rio Tralba. At that moment I’ve realized that my life is in danger. I had the whole movie in front of my eyes. I decided I don’t wanna die and somehow managed to catch my balance – probably thanks to the training I do with my coach – Andraž Jančar. Thanks Andro, you bastard had saved my life! 🙂 That was really close call and that’s why I will be celebrating my second birthday on 9th of June every year.

I am more for the high water

After the close call I’ve continued walking on the path. At this point I have to mention that it isn’t just downhill. It has quite some ascends and when you reach the canyon you are not exactly bursting of energy. But when we started putting the gear on I was amazed by Sandi’s sticker. “Come hell or high water”. Canyoneers understand it differently than other people do. For us, high water means that it can be dangerous or lethal. On one hand we want high water, so the canyon becomes more demanding (dangerous). If I put it in other words: wishing high water is a bit of a death wish. I am not sure that it is really wise thing having this sticker on the helmet, but… I want it too! 🙂

The canyon itself didn’t change much. We were just two and we jumped all the jumps that are possible so I didin’t had much time to take out the camera and make photos. I did just two or three, that are posted here.

The canyon is beautiful and worth doing, but not frequently. It has two or three really nice sections and nice jumps but there is just too much walking. First you walk for an hour to get to the canyon. And then in the middle of the canyon you have to walk and climb for another half an hour. Last but not least, you have to walk for another half hour to get to the car. So two hour walk, and we were out of the canyon in two hours from the entry. Rio Tralba, see ya in couple of years!

And there is another thing I have to mention. Rio Tralba and Rio Alba join in the lower part. Since the dam on Alba is being cleaned there is a lot of sediment sticked on the rocks in the lower part. It makes it really slippery. In case you visit it, be prepared that you will get out of the canyon with a bruise or two.

So after the canyon we decided we might do Rio Brussine. But when we had parked on the parking ground and eaten the lunch my body said it is enough for the day. I was tired, hungry and in need of a good sleep.  In my mind I was saying to myself: better not to go into the canyon then to go and not enjoy it like I would when my batteries would be full. I had to say sorry to the friend but he understood my situation. And this is really important – that we respect each other and our decisions. we just can’t convince the person to do something that he/she doesn’t want to do. It is always on them to decide.