Spring in Karkonosze Mountains, day 1: Kamienczyk Waterfall, Cascades of Myja and Mt Sniezka
The next part of report from my trip to Karkonosze Mountains.
The next day after my arrival weather still was just only acceptable (and peaks still were fully covered by clouds). Only from time to time one could see sun through the clouds, so there still was chance that weather forecast was accurate and there would be better weather in the afternoon. But first I went to see another waterfall of Karkonosze - the most well-known (at least on the Polish side) Kamienczyk Waterfall. This is something completely different that private Szklarka Waterfall. Not only this one is way bigger, but additionally, to reach the spot, you go through impressive gorge surrounded by vertical rock walls. If you make it in the morning, just after opening, then you have it just for yourself (you probably can imagine how crowded it may be in the middle of the day).
After leaving Kamienczyk gorge weather still was not very good, so I decided to stay in the valleys and I went to see some more waterfalls in the area - Cascades of Myja and Podgorna Waterfall. I really like not very tall but very nice-looking cascades, but - to be honest - Podgorna Waterfall is nothing special in my opinion. I was there already few times and I have never been able to shoot any nice pictures – this time was no exception. Anyway, when I was there having lunch, weather suddenly started to improve, so I decided to take a chance and go to the actual mountains for the sunset.
Cascades of Myja
Cascades of Myja
I drove my car to the town of Karpacz and after short review of my equipment in my backpack I went in the direction of the main ridge of Karkonosze mountains. I was planning to watch sunset from the highest mountain in Karkonosze: Mt Sniezka. Immediately when I left the forest I was surrounded by beautiful panoramas, especially in the direction of my final location: Mt Sniezka. I reached main ridge next to the cauldron of Wielki Staw (the biggest mountain lake in Karkonosze),where I turned left. In this area, main Karkonosze trail (marked with red spots) follows edge of two rock cauldrons with lakes at the bottom: Wielki Staw and then Maly Staw. The second of them is especially pretty - you stand at the top of almost vertical rock face with great view to the lake and refugee below with Mt Sniezka and other Karkonosze peaks closing the view on the horizon. Great spot for the sunrise! Actually I believe that this is one of the most beautiful views in whole Karkonosze mountains.
Way to the main ridge of Karkonosze Mountains
Mt Sniezka seen from the edge of the cauldron of Wielki Staw
At the edge of cauldron of Maly Staw
Mountain plain surrounding Mt Sniezka
Ascent to Mt Sniezka
After passing cauldrons I reached great plain surrounding Mt Sniezka where you can find many nice spots to take pictures. Weather was still very good, but when I started my final ascent to the top of Mt Sniezka I noticed that more and more clouds are coming from the north. Even worse, they start to go down and soon after I reached the top, they obstructed the views completely. That's why I even didn't wait to the end of the day, but I went down a little earlier to search for good spot for bivouac. Soon I found nice picnic spot with some wood tables and benches somewhere in the middle between Mt Sniezka and cauldrons that I passed earlier that day. I decided to spend night there just using my sleeping bag and tarp shelter there and then – just before the sunrise – to go to the edge of the Maly Staw cauldron for some nice pictures.
Ascent to Mt Sniezka
Too many clouds as for my taste
The closer to the top I was...
...the worse weather there was
At the top of Mt Sniezka (and it was supposed to be so nice weather...!)