Hora Ríp


Hora Ríp as seen from Vražkov. Note the yellow waymark © Ricky Yates

Hora Ríp as seen from Vražkov. Note the yellow waymark © Ricky Yates

Hora Ríp is a prominent hill, located about 48 km/30 miles north of Prague. It protrudes from the otherwise relatively flat Central Bohemian Plain, and is very visible and easily accessible from the D8, the Prague-Dresden motorway. Of course, there should be a hácek, a little hook, above the ‘R’ in ‘Ríp’, as there should be above the ‘c’ in ‘hácek‘. But as I have explained several times previously, the set-up of this blog cannot cope with many Czech diacritics and instead renders them as ‘?’ :-(

Wearing my geographer hat, I can tell you that Hora Ríp is the eroded remains of a former volcano. It consists of a variety of igneous rocks that are somewhere between 34 and 23 million years old. But for Czech people, Hora Ríp is believed to be the place where the first Slav people viewed the land and decided to settle here. So it has a great cultural significance.

Climbing Hora Ríp has been on my ‘bucket list’, (to use a very American expression :D ), for quite some time. Yesterday evening, I duly did so. My motivation was twofold. As well as wanting to tick it off my ‘bucket list’, I also wanted to see if I could still manage several kilometres of hill walking, being aware that my left leg has been giving me problems in recent days. I don’t want to set off in two weeks time, seeking to climb Swiss mountains with Sybille, if I cannot walk up a much lower Czech hill :-(

It took me less than an hour, to drive out of Prague to the village of Vražkov, despite having to cope with rush hour traffic and various road works. I parked my car off the road at the edge of the village, and set off along the yellow waymarked route towards the summit. Near the summit, I came to the point where the red waymarked route from the village of Ctineves, joins from the right. The sign at this junction of paths, declared that it is only a further 0.5km to the summit. I have to say that it was one of the the longest 0.5km that I have walked in a very long time :-)


Looking back towards Vražkov from near the summit of Hora Ríp © Ricky Yates

Looking back towards Vražkov from near the summit of Hora Ríp © Ricky Yates

However, just before the summit, there was this wonderful view, back towards Vražkov and beyond.


Vražkov, as seen from Hora Ríp © Ricky Yates

Vražkov, as seen from Hora Ríp © Ricky Yates

And by using the zoom feature on my camera, I took this picture of Vražkov. If you look closely, you can just see my car, parked on the opposite side of the road from the large white house on the right of the photograph.


The view north-west from Hora Ríp © Ricky Yates

The view north-west from Hora Ríp © Ricky Yates

This view is towards the north-west, with the mountains that form the Czech-German border, in the distance.


The pub is unfortunately zavreno © Ricky Yates

The bar is unfortunately ‘zavreno‘ © Ricky Yates

I had read that there was a bar at the summit, offering liquid refreshment to those who have exerted physical effort to climb there. There is – but it isn’t open at 19.00 on Wednesday evenings in July :-(

Likewise, the ancient Romanesque rotunda of Saint George, built by Sobeslav I in 1126, was also not open. However, despite both of these disappointments, I still very much enjoyed my ascent and decent of Hora Ríp. And as my leg feels better today than in recent days, I hopefully will still be able to walk with Sybille, through Switzerland and into France, in two weeks time.

The Romanesque rotunda of Saint George © Ricky Yates

The Romanesque rotunda of Saint George © Ricky Yates

My Liebster Blogger Award – part two

As promised in my first post eight days ago, here are my answers to the last six questions set by my Liebster Blogger Award nominator Emily, the owner of the blog Czechesotans.

6. What drives you crazy?

The addiction that so many people seem to have to their mobile/cell/smart phones. In particular, the number of people I see here in the Czech Republic, who talk on their mobile phones whilst driving, even though it is completely illegal to do so. What drives me even more crazy is that I’ve never yet seen the police stop someone doing so, even though here in Prague, there are always plenty of police around and they seem to stop people quite readily for relatively petty offences.

. . . → Read More: My Liebster Blogger Award – part two

A week of cold showers

Our heating & hot water plant © Ricky Yates

Visitors to the Chaplaincy Flat, when they look out from our main balcony, often ask exactly what is this industrial building, with its very tall chimney. The answer is that it’s a plant that produces hot water and heating for a large number of buildings in the immediate vicinity.

Judging by the utilitarian nature of it’s architecture, the plant clearly dates from the communist era. But it was obviously built with a far greater capacity than was necessary when first constructed. For now, the whole of ‘Rezidence Pobada’ is also supplied with heating and hot water from it. ‘Rezidence Pobada’, where the Chaplaincy Flat is situated, has been developed over the last ten years on the site of . . . → Read More: A week of cold showers

My Liebster Blogger Award – part one

A month ago yesterday, this blog was nominated for another award – A Liebster Blogger Award. This is an award given by fellow bloggers, to show appreciation for other blogs that they enjoy reading and think deserve to be highlighted and receive some praise.

My blog was nominated by Emily aka Writergem, whose own blog Czechesotans, is also about living as an expat in Prague; in her case, from the viewpoint of being an American teaching in an international school here for the past year. In her nomination of my blog she says, ‘Consider yourself educated after reading this one’. I did say in reply that I clearly needed fresh polish for my halo after receiving such praise

As part of the nomination process, the nominator sets a . . . → Read More: My Liebster Blogger Award – part one

Celebrating brave Czechoslovak Airmen and the Official Birthday of Her Majesty the Queen

The ‘Winged Lion’ monument © Ricky Yates

As I mentioned at the beginning of my previous post, I had a most interesting week in advance of my laptop computer lock-out problems. The highlight was attending two interrelated events on the afternoon and early evening of Tuesday 17th June.

The first event was the official unveiling of this monument, entitled ‘The Winged Lion’, by Sir Nicholas Soames MP, grandson of Sir Winston Churchill. It commemorates the nearly two and a half thousand Czechs and Slovaks who escaped from Czechoslovakia after the country was occupied by the Nazis in 1939, and served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War.

As this BBC news article explains, the idea for the memorial came . . . → Read More: Celebrating brave Czechoslovak Airmen and the Official Birthday of Her Majesty the Queen