We spent the last week in the Lesser Caucasus, in order to walk around South Ossetia and extended our trip by an additional day in the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park, choosing a higher and slightly longer route.
Since I had left Ambrolauri with an upset stomach, and wasn't able to eat for an entire day, I even arrived in Borjomi with some food left over ;)
The last week was nice, but certainly not as spectacular as the Higher Caucasus, although the National Park was a highlight. And it is hot at lower elevations...
Thus we decided to take a bus back into the high mountains, to make good use of the summer months. We can still go back to the lower mountains, when approaching October!
Cute piglets in a village
Up to the limestone cliff is where we headed to
Water was always appreciated in this heat!
Looking up into the sky at our campsite - a beautiful open fir forest
The first time that we were able to leave our tent halfway way open, the next nights we never put the rainfly over!
People making hay on Mt. Satsalike (1996 m)
The other side of Mt. Satsalike is a limestone cliff
Katskhi pillar with a church on top
Leaving a thorny river bed, it became a dry landscape
Sadly, we didn't pass these lakes - would have been wonderful to take a cool bath
Thanks to many bridges, we kept dry feet crossing the Shaviskala river in Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park. It's just sad that all if the first part in the park was hiking on dirt roads
Bear print in the mud
Looks like it can also be wet in this forest
Leaving the forest for some beautiful views. Despite being a National Park, there are cows and farms... but no aggressive shepherd dogs ;)
The clouds are coming at night...
... and it got so windy, that I had to move the tent at night to this windsheltered spot at the trail
Sunrise in the Borjomi National Park
The highest peak in the Park is Sametskhvario (2642 m), which looks quite inconspicuous
I was so happy to find this little spring - I guess you have to be thirsty to really appreciate it ;)
Blueberries are ripe and the plants look very brown already, but on this one, wasps built a nest
So many good views in this part of the Park!
It is incredible, what temperature difference it makes, to walk under trees or in open meadows!
The light was so nice on the last morning, so I could hardly stop myself to take pictures!
Down in the forest to the road, where a hitch brought me to the town of Borjomi.