sken

National Nature Reserve Klátovské rameno (Slovakia)

Last year I had the opportunity to float about a 2 km stretch of Klátovské rameno just before it flows into the Little Danube. It is a slow flowing river which impressed me by crystal clear water in it. I decided to explore it. I found that the entire area had been a national nature reserve since 1993. It is a home to  many rare plants and animals. Some species have been discovered right here

The access to the river is very bad. Dense forest and steep banks. At least the river is partially protected against people. I wanted to see the largest section and I found the entrance to the water in front of the village of Jahodna. A “no entry” sign and a muddy road made the journey annoying. It was  worth it, though.

Voyage starts
Voyage starts

 

Fishes
Fishes

 

On the water I usually enjoy the magic of  surrounding countryside. In this case I kept looking down most of the time – into the water. Hypnotic schools of fish. Hundreds, thousands. I saw countless schools of recently hatched fishes, huge carps, crucian carp, chubs, pikes and my favorite catfish. I could not even identify some species. Magical.

Water as a mirror. You can feel autumn everywhere.

Autumn
Autumn

I did not know what to expect.  Not only was there dense vegetation and a huge amount of fallen trees, I found out that a dam in front of the watermill could by bypassed only from right. But it is fenced private land. Since this was the only way to go on,  I just walked past the house, opened the gate and transferred the boat. Behind the fence there was a notice board of the National Nature Reserve. To build a house here is probably not a problem. Later I found out that people caught fish and  threw rubbish here. People just do not know how to appreciate the Earth on which we live. One more round under the dam and off we go.

Watermill
Watermill

I am approaching the confluence of Klátovské rameno and Klátovský kanál (channel). It’s so beautiful in here. I have a whole day ahead of me so I decided to paddle upstream and discover the “channel”. Water runs somehow faster. At least I can warm up a little, because all the time I am going under the trees. A school of fish and kingfishers are accompanying me everywhere. I needed to put down all my equipment to be able to crossed the fallen trees. I did not  want to bathe so I turned around and went back.

Klátovský kanál (Channel)
Klátovský kanál (Channel)

It is interesting how the river changes depending on the  river bed. Because of such clear water you can see up to 5 meters deep. You have the opportunity to see these changes. The bottom of the river is not flat as it might seem. Water takes away sediments and creates interesting formations. Some plants thrive in a muddy river bed, the others in the sand and some only in gravel bottom.  The river bed is also decorated with sunken trees.

Water plants
Water plants

A few minutes after I interrupted a beaver family I saw an otter enjoying a fish. Although she jumped into the water, she was not alone. They were very curious and they swam under my kayak several times.

Mirror
Mirror

A luxury fishing seat with rods directly in a national nature reserve. As normally, the hill of trash was visible, as well.

Poachers
Poachers

And it was not the only one. There were always a few in the vicinity of villages.

Poachers
Poachers

Mushroom pickers complain about the fact there are not enough mushrooms. Around the water they can draw moisture other ways and are not necessarily dependent on rain. Around the Little Danube, for example, people pick yellow wood-destroying mushroom sulphur polypore, oyster, or spruces in the spring.

Mushrooms
Mushrooms

It is really beautiful in here. Many water birds are accompanying me. In high trees I saw about 50 members of white heron colony.

Mirror
Mirror

And one more fish photo in the end.

Fishes
Fishes