Equipped with topographical maps, ample water and fresh cherry-stuffed pastries, we set out to explore Durmitor National Park in Montenegro, aiming to reach the summit of Savin Kuk, one of the black peaks for which the park is famous. We wound our way past lakes and through the forest, following the ever-helpful trail blazes, when all of a sudden, the blazes just disappeared. Oh well, we thought, it's obvious which way is up. We trudged along, making it halfway up the side of a ski slope when we realized that we really had no idea how to get to the top. No trail. No blazes. No fellow hikers.
At first, I was pissed off and disappointed. I don't like missing out on things, and when was I going to be back in Montenegro to experience these mountaintop views?! But then I gave myself a reality check: I was surrounded by beauty. The green hills, the black mountains, even the abandoned A-frame ski huts... you don't have to reach the top to find the picturesque.