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Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

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Brighton and Hove...
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for Trogir, Ciovo Island
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Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

Just returned from visiting the beautiful Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj areas and the impact of the ice storm in February is massive. There is a lot of work underway to cut down and remove trees where they have fallen but a lot of walking paths/cycle routes are still blocked by fallen trees. Quiet walks in the woods are somewhat marred by the sound of chain-saws while tractors are carving deep tracks through the same woods to drag tree trunks away.

On a day of bad rain we walked round the lake and up to Vintgar Gorge which is not open at this time of year but is absolutely in spate with huge tree limbs coming down, bits of tree blocking the river etc. Speaking to the Lake Bled tourist office staff later we were told that it was possible that Vintgar Gorge would not be open until June this year as so many of the board walks have been smashed away by fallen trees in the river. It was quite frightening to watch the power of the water going by full of debris and creating white water rapids.

I know that a visit to the Gorge is a real highlight of many people's visits to this area (I'm already planning to return to do the things I didn't manage to do) so it may be worth checking with the tourist info office or the excellent DEs for this part of Slovenia to see if it is open if you plan to visit.

Slovenia
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1. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

Hi Jude,

Glad to hear you enjoyed your visit. Yes, the damage is really significant and I don't think people quite understand how extensive it is and that in places it will take many, many years to clear up all the damage.

I can imagine that Vintgar must be hugely affected as even during a 'normal' winter there is a lot of damage there from fallen trees.

As you rightly say, best to check first. Or post a question here and someone (me or one of the other regulars) will answer or try and find the answer for you.

Saint Louis...
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2. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

So is it cold and snowy up there still or is the weather decent?

Rio de Janeiro, RJ
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3. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

"we were told that it was possible that Vintgar Gorge would not be open until June"

OMG... almost cried when I read this. I'm going there on late may. Thanks for sharing, though.

Edited: 10:07 pm, March 26, 2014
Slovenia
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4. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

It's really just best to check. Don't cry yet! There is A LOT of work going on everywhere at the moment in the forests and wooded areas and I've been surprised by how quickly, in some areas, they have managed to clear up but other areas will of course be much more difficult to reach and slower to clear.

The problem is also that a lot of the forest is privately owned and some of the owners may not have the machinery/equipment etc. required to clear up devastation on such a scale so have to apply for help which may take a while.

We will get there but unless you can understand how extensive the damage was, 40% of all the trees in the country, it's difficult to appreciate but at least this area wasn't as badly affected as some areas - around Postojna was the worst affected.

Slovenia
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5. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

To answer the other question, there is still A LOT of snow in the high mountains, i.e. over 4 metres on Triglav (and 40cm fresh snow last weekend) but elsewhere at around the 1,000 metre level, particularly on southern facing slopes, it is now snow free.

This week has been cool and cloudy but the fine weather looks set to return at the weekend.

Rio de Janeiro, RJ
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6. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

Thank you, Adele. Hope that Skocjan Caves are not damaged as well.

Cornwall,UK
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for Cornwall, Isles of Scilly
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7. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

How awful. I can sympathise, as we have had terrible storms with the sea wreaking havoc on many harbours and properties here. The clean up goes on here as well.

I am in Bled in late June, so hope the gorge is open again, as I last visited 25 years ago and remember how spectacular it is.

Phoenix
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8. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

We just returned (March 5) and the caves were open.

Rio de Janeiro, RJ
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9. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

Great news, Witty, thank you. Have you been to Skocjan or Postojna? Or both? How was your trip?

Phoenix
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10. Re: Impact of ice storm & Vintgar Gorge opening 2014

Loved every minute of our trip to Slovenia! We went to the Postojna caves. It worked well to combine this cave with thePredjama Castle that we also wanted to see! We were using public transportation which made the visit to the caves a little more difficult so at the last minute we booked a half day tour so we could have transportation to Postojna and Predjama castle. If we had rented a car I think we would have gone to the Skocjan caves and combined that visit with the Lipica Stud Farm.