Roman Malanke

New Year Trip to Slavske

Happy New Year! Yesterday I came back from Carpathians where I had celebrated New Year with my friends (and friends of my friends, etc.) and gone for some crazy snowboarding sessions.

We arrived to Slavske by train early in the morning on 29th of December. The extreme part of the trip began right away on our way from railroad station to the house we were staying in. Our landlord Igor came for us to the station with his neighbor Ivan, who was driving ancient soviet automobile “UAZik”, which is definetely the most popular vehicle in town due to its cross-country abilities. Amazinlgly all 11 people easily managed to get inside UAZik (well Igor was not actually inside the car — he hanged in the back seizing spare wheel :-)). It turned out that our house was situated on the hill and to get there by car in winter time one should be a really fearless driver. Luckily Ivan was one of those — he calmly stepped on the juice and madly rotated steering wheel while UAZik climbed up the hill hitting stony walls on each side of the narrow road.

The house we were staying in turned to be a cozy little building made solely out of wood with one big room on the first floor and two small bedrooms on the second. All necessary facilities like bathroom, shower, and hot water were right inside.

Having several mountains available for skiing and snowboarding around the town we decided to go to the Trostian mountain first which subsequently proved to be a good choice. My deepest impression of the first day was encounter with the rope tow. It was a pitiful sight — me trying to get up the highest slope grasping the tow with my hands. The fun thing is that I succeeded but I felt so exhausted on top of the mountain that I had to lie for a good ten minutes in snow to recover. Eventually I mastered the art of using that tow and did my ascents without any efforts.

The next two days we also spend on Trostian discovering new pathes with my fellow-skiers althouth several times I did ride alone on pure-snowboarding routes where skiers can’t go because their skis dive into thick masses of powdered snow.

Then came the most fun New Year party I’ve ever had — I woke up 30 minutes before New Year, quickly celebrated it, and 30 minutes after I was already asleep again — all for the sake of snowboaring next day.

On the first of January we went to Zakhar Berkut — another famous mountain in the town which is even 10 meters higher that Trostian. There we got a little bit disappointed because the prices to use the crowded chair lift (which is the only way to get on top of the mountain) were somewhat steep. Moreover the routes and the slopes turned out to be less interesting which determined our decision to spend the last day on Trostian.

The brightest impression of the last day for me is vivid bruice on my forehad which I got when tried swift slalom on the narrow crowded road with stony wall aside. Anyway it didn’t darken overall satisfaction of the trip at all.