Sunny after early mist, thundery shower in afternoon 16 – 30 C

Today we moved from the hot Eastern Rhodope Mountains to the higher cooler Western Rhodope Mountains.  We stopped at the small well vegetated Sestrinko Reservoir for an hour or so  in the mid morning, where large numbers of darters, mainly Broad Scarlets were emerging.  European Pond Terrapins, Grass Snake and Lesser Emperor were seen among masses of commoner dragonflies.  We then continued our journey.

We reached the mountain Smolyan Lakes in time for a late lunch, which was eaten during a heavy shower, in a setting reminiscent of a Scottish lochan.  There were lots of Spearhead Bluets in the sedges, plus a few four spotted Chasers and Blue Hawkers emerging.

We walked up to the higher lake, where a couple of Downy Emeralds appeared during a brief sunny spell and the Firecrests sang for those who could hear.  At one of the lower lakes nearer Smolyan town we saw Downey Emeralds.  The temperature was falling, so we made our way to the hotel Elitsa in Pamporovo, situated near to conifer forest what we would explore in the morning.

The Western Rhodope Mountains hotel was a ski lodge, run by one woman.  The service was slow, and bizarre.   We had to wait ages for beer, she seemed to go away for ages to bring back a couple of bottles for one order.  When the next order was made, off she would go again.  The meal was a long time coming, chicken which did not seem to be cooked through.  Not a happy set of diners that night in the Western Rhodope Mountains..

 


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