Prior to venturing into the realm of ice climbing, the only thing I knew about the Hell Gorge (also Pekel Gorge; Slovene: soteska Pekel), was that it was a few degrees cooler than its surroundings, and as such perfect for summer chilling just thirty kilometres away from the city hassle. While its numerous waterfalls that plunge from twenty to five metres down, and emerald green pools of fresh water allure people to refresh themselves in the summer, it attracts quite a different bunch in cold winters.
This year, after a few weeks with temperatures significantly below zero, we had the privilege to see the Hell freeze and experience it in a completely different perspective. Since this doesn’t happen very often – the last time was actually five years ago – you can imagine the news of the frozen waterfalls spreading across Ljubljana and about like wildfire. A week into the frozen Hell, my friends finally talked me into giving ice climbing a fair try and the technically not too demanding Hell Gorge seemed like a good option.