Passing through Cheile Bicazului (part 2)

I realized something after I read through yesterday’s post on Cheile Bicazului a couple of times. I hadn’t included any photos of the actual mountain pass, which made my comments about how it was carved out of the rock seem a bit superfluous. That was an oversight that needed to be corrected.

This time, you’ll get to see what the road looks like. I have to confess I was too much in awe of those abrupt and incredibly tall walls on each side of me to notice the road very much. Maybe I’ll get my head out of the clouds the next time I visit the place. Till then, here’s what I’ve got.

This was taken before going into the pass. You can see the fog and bad weather hovering above the pass a few kilometers ahead. That’s Ligia walking toward me in the photo.

Walk toward me

After we entered the pass, my eyes kept wondering upwards toward those impossibly abrupt mountain faces. Not only were they almost vertical, some were even leaning inward. This very next photo reminds me of an impenetrable hold, or fort of medieval times.

Hold

It’s amazing how efficient trees are at finding places to grow! You wouldn’t think it possible, but those evergreens managed to find their ecological niche growing right on sheer rock!

Find a niche

I finally managed to get my eyes on the road for this next photo. It’s narrow all through the pass as it squeezes between the mountain peaks, and there are no lane markers. At strategic points along the road, you’ll find shops that sell various folk items such as earthen vessels, carved ladles and other kitchen utensils, sheepskin vests and coats, and other such things.

Mountain shops

When I think of how they made the road, this photo comes to mind. Notice the deep cuts in the stone? It was by brute force alone they managed to get through that impregnable granite.

Deep cuts

This next photo will get across the sheer size of the stone walls surrounding the visitor. Those are fully grown evergreens sitting on top of that ridge!

Tall and taller

Remember the brook in yesterday’s post? That same happy little mountain brook has grown a little wider by the time I took this photo. It winds along through the pass, accompanying the road.

You’ve grown

I can’t resist showing that impressive wall of granite one more time.

Try climbing that

Once we made it through to the other side, the road widened, and we entered a village. Yes, that’s the very same brook shown above. Notice how high the stone walls are on either side? That bridge is also placed high for a good reason. Our happy little brook turns into a furious torrent when the snows melt every spring. The villagers need all the protection they can get to make sure they don’t get swept away with the water. It’s very possible that even that high wall doesn’t protect them enough, and their courtyards flood every once in a while.

On the other side

Cheile Bicazului is such a wonderful and photogenic place! I’ll do my best to return there with Ligia in the near future.