Zapikan Gorge is worth a visit

Slanské vrchy were in the past the residenceof many bandits. They stayed here mainly for the deposits of expensive opals. Semi-precious stones from Dubník were a highly sought-after prized item. One of the localities where robbers allegedly hid in the past, according to the local dialect, was a gorge created by the Komorský stream. According to legend, a robber hid in front of the gendarmes in the 19th century. Therefore, the gorge is also called Zapikan's chyža (chyža = house).

This small gorge is located in the eastern part of Slanské vrchy, about an hour's walk from the village of Davidov in a westerly direction. It can be reached from the village by following the yellow or blue sign. We parked the car at the end of the village next to a small wooden podium at the football stadium. The trail starts at the tourist sign on the bank of the stream, through which you cross the iron footbridge. We set out full of verve in anticipation of an extraordinary experience. After only 100 meters, we incorrectly turned onto a dirt road. Assuming we were going right, we entered a completely different forest. After about 45 minutes of wandering, we gave it up and used our mobile phone and map application to find out our location. We found ourselves in a different place than we wanted to be. We had no choice but to go back to the beginning and set out on the journey again. On the second try, we found the right way. She led down a side meadow. The blue mark occasionally appeared on a dry wooden wheel hidden in the bushes, along with an arrow and the inscription Zapikan. After about two kilometers, the path led us to the edge of the forest. The right one. There, a yellow sign joined the blue sign on the right, which leads further to the top of Mazolín.

We refreshed ourselves in the gazebo and after a while we entered the darkness of the beech forest. The sidewalk branched several times, tempted us to turn. Only after a hard search we noticed the faded tourist signs. The terrain on the right began to descend into a deep gorge, at the bottom of which a stream meandered. After another minute of walking, a gorge appeared in front of us with two waterfalls and overhangs under the rock. From the sidewalk we took a wooden stairs down to the stream. On one side of the gorge, a 25-meter wooden footbridge leads across the stream. On the other side of the stream, under the overhang, there is a sitting area and a fireplace, so you can relax there. In the gorge, two branches of the Komorský stream merge with small waterfalls about two meters high. In dry weather, this gorge is without water, which we also experienced, and the waterfalls did not allow us to see their full beauty.

The gorge was formed by water erosion of pyroclastic deposits from the andesitic stratovolcano Strechový vrch. In a short section, the Komorský stream created very nice terrain notches and cascades with steep slopes and rocky walls. In 1993, Zapikan was declared a protected natural monument, as a site of interest from a geomorphological, educational and tourist point of view.

We enjoyed our stay at a special natural event for a while, took a few photos and slowly went back. Two tourists were just heading for the sidewalk to the gorge, who wanted to have a picnic there. We slowly came out of the darkness of the forest. The October sun was smiling at us in the meadow. On the way to the village, a few photos of the panorama of the town of Vranov and the chimneys of the timber holding Bukóza came up. After about 40 minutes of walking down the hill, we ended the walk at the place where we parked our car. Satisfied with the trip, we went home.