Branko woke me up around 6. Immediately I needed to use restroom. But, cafe was still closed. So I had to run all over wooden bridge. I made it in the nick of time 🙂
Our first task was to get to Tikveš castle.
After few hours of walking we reached forest that led us to Tikveš Wasteland.
Finally, at noon we were at Tikveš Wasteland wich is a sort of a small village and decided to rest under some marquee. In the middle of our lunch we heard someone calling: heeeey, thru hikers!!! It was a guy from Osijek named Daniel. He heard that we are in the neighborhood and decided to come by his bicycle. What a pleasant surprise!!! Daniel was reading my blog regularly when I was on PCT in 2016. It was great to meet him!
Daniel cycled to check if there is potable water in Tikveš Castle and brought back good news. After saying goodby to him, Branko and I continued towards the castle.
Tikveš Castle: It was built in the spirit of Romantic Historicism in the second half of the 19th century. Around the castle, there is a park and promenade connected to a hunting villa built in the manner of country architecture. During its rich history, the castle in Tikveš was a hunting centre visited by members of the noble Teschen lineage, the Habsburg lineage, later by members of the Karađorđević dynasty and many others. Numerous photographs of Isabella von Habsburg, the wife of Friedrich von Habsburg who owned an estate there until 1918, bear witness to castle history. After the World War II, the castle was one of the presidential residences of Josip Broz Tito, and numerous world politicians stayed there during their hunting visits. Today this complex has a new purpose, housing the European Centre for Environment. (Source: http://www.tzbaranje.hr/en/attractions/cultural/the-castle-in-tikves,3685.html )
There was still few kilometers of forest in front of us. After having reached the forest edge we decided to rest there. And then time came to face the Sun.
Oh yes, it was like hell and our strength went down. This was the toughest part of the voyage. In that moment I’ve lost enthusiasm and started to doubt CLDT: “Will anybody hike this trail? Why are we doing this? What is wrong with us! This is so unbearable!!!!!” Negative thoughts swarmed like bees. At one point we fell down in only shade we saw in kilometers. It was really tough to continue, but we needed to get as close to Zmajevac (Dragon village) as we can.
Few hours later we found our camping spot in the corn field. “Hey, Branko, when do farmers harvest the corn?”, I asked. “In September!”, he replied. “Good to know, good to know!!!!”.
After pitching the tents we wanted to start a fire and grill clips of corn. As soon as I stepped out of my tent trillions of mosquitoes surrounded me!!!! “What a hell!”, I yelled. No corn for you, mosquitoes said.
That day we hiked around 15,5 miles (24 km). It was great distance regarding the sun and our mental struggles. We were hoping the next day will bring something better.
Making of a trail goes on!!!!!