Bordermarkers 19 - 30
Before starting this first hike I went to the office of the Border Police in Halmeu. In preparation I had good contact with them and now they expected me. When I arrived, I was warmly welcomed by two gentlemen. One in suit and one informal dressed. That one turned out to be the boss of the region. And the one in suit was the one that I spoke on the phone the week before. They were all very friendly, helpful and interested. The Dutch syrup waffles were received with thanks.
The route I wanted to hike, however, turned out not to be easy. A lot of mud, water, canals and even wild dogs at a sheep farm. Agricultural area. Monotonous and boring and not very well drained. It would certainly not be an easy journey, that much was clear. I would not get it in a two or three hours either.
They were very willing and offered to take me to a starting point in Cidreag: then I could leave my car at their office and I did not have to walk back all the way. I had secretly hoped for that and they already offered it. It saved me about 7.5 kilometers on boring asphalt.
The area west of Halmeu.
Halmeu border crossing
Before starting the long hike, it was time for a nice picture with the very friendly and helpful staff of the Border Police in Halmeu.
Border at Cidreag
I was very lucky with these most friendly and caring people. They brought me to the start of my hike at the end of the road in Cidreag, a village , which saved me a 7.5 kilometer walking along asphalt roads.
At the end of the road there was a small patrol post. It is not possible to cross the border here, although in the past the road was connected to Ukraine.
To get an impression of the area, you can go to Google streetview. Actually most interesting and curious pictures of this area.
Border marker 19
The first one for today: close to the interrupted road between Romania and Ukraine. Besides the Romanian and the Ukrainian copy, there is a third pole containing a camera fixed on the border.
Green and wet border
The border police already warned that I would need high boots to stay dry. Indeed, this area is not the best one to hike through. A bit swampy and water on many places.
... and the worst was yet to come...
The border itself is somewhere in the impenetrable bushes.
Border marker 20
On the opposite of this puddle of water you see both border markers. On some places there is a gap in the bushes to maintain the border markers.
No escape or detour possible. It was hard to cross this area, but I had no choice...
Border marker 21
Again a third pole containing cameras.
Unfortunately most Romanian border markers don't contain a number.
Border marker 22
Hard to find and to detect this pair. If you are here in summer you have no chance to find them...
Border marker 23
I didn't find this pair. Although there is a path (or river) along most parts of the border here, I missed them. Once I found 24, I did't want to go back. It's always a race against time...
Border marker 24
Again in the bushes and again a small gap in the bushes.
Border marker 25
The border makes an angle here. I couldn't picture the Ukrainian copy.
Border marker 26
The Ukrainian copy is surrounded by water. The area however is quite open.
The Romanian side however is not attractive to approach.
Border marker 27
A bit more open space.
Border marker 28
Almost hidden in the bushes. On the close-up you can see the number '28' and on the background you can even recognize the Ukrainian copy.
Sometimes it's hard to orientate in this area. By accident I shortly crossed the border which I only discovered by seeing the Ukrainian fences. They must be very old and part of the well known Russian system of border protection called 'Sistema'. I found similar fences at Russian and Belarussian borders.
Thank God they didn't see or catch me...
Border marker 29
Now I reached a sensible area where smuggling is popular. Motion detectors on the Romanian side have to detect this.
Border marker 30
Close to the last one. Fortunately it's not so wet here and it's easy to follow the border again.