We are packing for the upcoming European Packrafting Meetup at the Soca and memories from our first Soca trip come to mind. Back then, we had just become parents to our little daughter Maya and were looking for a family friendly road trip with good packrafting opportunities. Living in Austria, the Soca is only a stones throw away, so it was an easy choice.
We decided to arrive via the scenic high mountain road over the Vršič pass, a route that is worth taking (once) if you have time and don’t get carsick (there are 50 hairpin bends!). The views driving down are breathtaking and you drive right past the source of the Soca.
We parked our van at the super friendly and beautiful Klin Lepena campground, which is conveniently located next to the upper most put in of the Soca. Further up stream the Soca runs within the National Park and kayaking and rafting is not allowed.
With little Maya only being 5 months old, Michaela planned to walk along the river, while I packed most of our gear in the packraft. We have since found that this is a great way to travel and works well also for extended expeditions.
As usual, the packing took most of the morning, making sure we had river gear, safety gear, camping gear, food, first aid kit, nappies etc for 4-5 days of hiking and packrafting.
Weather was stunning and both the river and the trail were fantastic, so each of us had a blast while making our way downriver. Every now and then, we would meet up for little picnics and a dip, and to give Maya some playtime.
Our initial (and very ambitious) plan was to see if we could possibly packraft to Kobarid or Tolmin and then make it back hiking over Mount Krn. But after a few days of hiking and packrafting, we got to Kobarid where the river started to get a bit less pristine, the surroundings more urbanised, and also some weather with heavy rains came in. So we decided to change plans, relax for a day and then go for a 2 day hike to the 7 lakes high up in the Triglav National Park.
Talking with local friends, we got recommended to stay at Kamp Korita (a super friendly and authentic campground, right next to one section of gorges along the Soca) and take the trail up from there. It was spectacular, and we didn’t meet a single person. Slovenians are very keen hikers, so this is quite rare! When getting to the first lakes we made camp for the night (at 1800m!).
Hiked past more lakes on the next day, with some snow still lingering and great views.
Our loop took us down to Trento and from there we hiked back along the river to our starting point, which gave us a chance to also appreciate the section of the Soča that runs through the national park and can’t be rafted.
If you like high mountains, this is an awesome side trip and made us realize how much Slovenia has to offer. Such a great little country, we can’t wait for the Packrafting Meetup this weekend and meeting you there!