Mystery Lake in the Height of Summer

Yes, the intermittent Lake Cerknica with its regular cycles of drying out and filling up is a very attractive place, always showing a different face to an aspring photographer. We went there in spring, when the waters just started to recede, and then again in early summer, when the former bottom of the lake was covered in lush green grass.

This time the simmering summer heat dried up all the lake but the deepest sinkholes in the northwest. It was the summer hay cut time, which in the Notranjska Regional park with Lake Cerknica – a Natura2000 and Ramsar site – takes place after the endangered and strictly protected corn crakes (Crex crex) leave their nests.

And the colors were amazing … A strange, deep palette of greens, with muddy waters, adorned by flowering yellow water lilies (Nuphar lutea), and blue marsh gentians (Gentiana pneumonanthe) giving the meadows a profound hue. Long stems of sedges (Carex ssp.) were like soft, gentle hairs, undulating in the wind.

Rešeto – “the sieve” – sinkhole area in the northwestern part of Lake Cerknica almost never dries up, and all the fish of the lake congregate there. Stržen creek sat deep in its riverbed, and the pools were shrinking by the hour.

Summer’s almost gone, and the lake awaits the rain-bearing clouds to come and fill it up again. The cycle starts over again, as it has for millenia – and it will for millenia to come.

All kite aerial photos taken with Canon A810 on Millie the french military kite.

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