I'll admit. It's difficult for me to decide which season I like the most. Spring brings little leaves of gentle green and the budding life, there's something magical about summer and its starry nights, whereas autumn creates a special crescendo with its glowing, intense colours before nature settles down to rest peacefully in winter. There's no need to compare, let alone pick. It's best to profit from the beauty and magic of each and every season. Or simply live and experience.
That's really not hard to do in Slovenia, the only problem you might encounter is wanting to taste everything it has to offer in each season. There are hardly enough days, not to mention hours J. And so you keep coming back to the same places, in different seasons, throughout the years. To observe how light changes. To listen to the murmur in the canyon. To feel the smell of autumn, spring, winter.
Stane and I like returning to Bohinj. The lake and its surroundings always create an unforgettable atmosphere. Every time, we leave full of new ideas as to where to go next and when.
In late autumn when the days are slowly growing shorter and the hills turn golden—I’m thinking of the golden yellow colour of larch trees painted by autumn -we were rediscovering our favourite spots. Pokljuka. Mostnica. The lake. The lake itself is a source of endless inspiration, so inviting. But when you combine it with everything else, the experience can become even more beautiful and more intense.
That time around, the lake wasn’t calling me quite as persistently as the mountains above Bohinj were. When I photograph I like to give myself enough time on location. This means that I prefer getting there an hour early; the colours are often even more beautiful then. This time we checked the path in the afternoon the day before and explored the beautiful autumn colours and motifs. “The morning is going to be awesome,” echoed quietly inside my head as we were descending to the valley. I set the alarm and off we went. We were on our way, driving to Pokljuka, but the light was too intense for that hour. And on our way up the most wonderful morning colours were barely still shining. Unfortunately, I (thoughtlessly) forgot about the time change. Although I was angry at my carelessness, I gave in and relaxed in the lovely colours I experienced a bit before the view that had been planned. We’ll just have to reach the desired destination some other time. Who knows why it had to be this way, I ask myself quietly.
Larch trees made us feel better and when it got cloudy, we descended to Mostnica. To the river. For a moment I felt as if I travelled back in time. There weren’t many visitors, only a few went past us when we stopped at individual motifs, improved them and tried to feel them. The colours and shapes do their thing. I dive into the beauty that speaks to me in a different way every time. I see new shapes, and not just the well-known “Little Elephant” stone formation. If we give ourselves enough time, other shapes will talk to us too. Every time differently. This reflects our inner state, inclinations, longings.
This is why I like coming back. I was there several times that autumn. This year, due to other obligations in Kočevsko, I didn’t have the opportunity to visit the Bohinj area, not even for a short getaway, and so I'm reliving it now through words and selected photographs. To give you and myself a suggestion for a trip there in the coming winter, in lush spring or wonderful autumn.
Petra Draškovič Pelc
Born in the Slovene Štajerska, she chose to live in Kočevje and the mere thought of adventures in the wild nature of Alaska gets her heart racing like a wild animal. She enjoys silence, peace and the beauty of the light-flooded wilds of all the untouched corners of the world, as well as the beauty of her local Kočevje-area and Slovenia. She is an enthusiastic traveler, a curious admirer of nature, a tourist guide, author of countless articles in Slovenia as well as abroad and a doctor in biomedical science, who found her calling in (natural scientific) photography. Throughout her work with ARS NATURAE she tries to express love towards nature and its preservation.