Horní Malá Úpa

We took a little trip today, to the lovely village of Horní Malá Úpa, which means there is also a Dolní Malá Úpa, and even a Velká Úpa.
For the non-Czech speakers among my readers, Úpa is the name of the river, which is a creek, really. It may get bigger, but at this point you can practically step across it. Velká means big and Malá means little. Horní means upper and Dolní, as you have probably guessed by this point in the sentence, means lower.
The ‘village’ consists of a tourist information center, a couple of hotels, a ski shop, a spa, a couple of hotels and a brewery/restaurant. I imagine it gets pretty crowded in ski season. It was not crowded today. There is a hiking trail which begins in the town and winds through the forest and meadows, sometimes along the creek, sometimes not. Along the route, there are fairy tale scenes, usually a couple of small, wooden sculptures, and an information pole, on which the fairy tale is printed out in Czech, Polish (it is right next to the Polish border), German and English. Mostly about Krakonosh, who is the local mountain sub-deity, kind of like a Paul Bunyan (the valleys are caused by his heavy footprints). We saw 6 or 7 fairy tale scenes, and probably covered less than half the trail.
It was a cool day, alternating between foggy and drizzly, and we encountered so few other people on the path it felt like we had the world to ourselves.
I am exhausted, and a bit sore, but it was lovely. A day well spent.

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