"We choose to go through a real border crossing and show our credentials to leave the EU. It is also a way to be sure not to meet a mine on a misunderstanding ".
It is in Bosnia that we really crossed the heart of winter. Its mountains and its continental climate did not leave us any chance to escape. Luckily, the weather is rather on our side. We systematically progressed on several meters of snow but except for a few days of wind, the weather was very nice.
In the nature reserve of Blidinje, we discover untouched and wild places. Here, the only ski resort has only three ski lifts. In winter, few people venture into the mountains, and when we leave this microstation, we don't see anyone else.
On the Krug plateau, near the border with Croatia, about 500 wild horses have been living for more than fifty years. The story goes that they were originally domesticated horses that escaped. Since then, they have resisted everything and their population is even slowly increasing from year to year.
In the heart of Herzegovina, Blidinje Nature Reserve is located on a large area that includes three mountain ranges - Vran, Čabulja and Čvrsnica. Blidinje is known for its unspoiled and wild mountainous areas. A single, tiny ski resort vaguely disturbs the calm of these massifs.
We made the detour to Sarajevo to discover this city full of history. Like the rest of the country, the city is cut in two. The border between the Serbian and Bosnian majorities literally runs through the middle of the city. We essentially explored the Bosnian part of the city and we loved it! Turkish coffee (Bosnian sorry) in terrace, loukoums and Ottoman architecture... We never felt so close to Istanbul!
Arrived at the foot of the Prenj massif, "the Bosnian Himalaya", we are taken by a small hesitation. We know that it is a very isolated massif and extremely difficult to access for mountain rescue. The weather seems to be on our side, add to that a good dose of curiosity and we are on our way to the slopes of Prenj. We are alone, pulling our pulkas. The mountain belongs to us, or rather... we belong to it. Four whole days without seeing any other tracks than ours in the snow.
The highest village in Bosnia, perched on a cliff side, is also one of the highest in the whole Balkan peninsula. Before arriving there, no one on our road could tell us for sure if the village was inhabited in winter. In the end, there was no one there. We visited the village like a museum, feeling a little voyeuristic to be there all alone.
"When we prepared the itinerary, we knew nothing about Bosnia-Herzegovina. The last images we had seen of Sarajevo showed a city under siege and peacekeepers. What does the country look like today? Are the traces of the war still visible? Is it possible to hike without too much risk of stepping on a mine? Without too much risk at all for that matter?"
We discovered Bosnia-Herzegovina under a thick white coat. Would we even recognize some of the places we discovered if we went back in summer? On some ridges, we could see the highest branches of the fir trees pointing into the snow under our feet. We were walking on the forest!
The plateaus of Herzegovina welcomed our first steps in the country. We then went through the various mountainous massifs of the center of the country. A small stop in Sarajevo before taking the direction of the park of Sutjeska and to cross a new border.
Discover the pictures of our crossing of Bosnia-Herzegovina from the mountains of Herzegovina to the national park of Sutjeska. A dive in the heart of Bosnia-Herzegovina in the middle of winter, its snowy summits, its mountain huts and its small glasses of rakija.