Photo and story by Maurizio Biancarelli
Daybreak Light and Fog on the Veliki Prstvaci Waterfalls was one of the winners in this year’s European Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. The falls are located in Plitvice National Park.
On Friday, October 3rd, I arrived at Plitvice National Park. The woods were still green with large patches of yellow and orange here and there: the fall season was just about to start.
We walked a trail uphill to get beautiful views from above. I did not expect to find so many people in this season. There were many Japanese tourists; they come to Croatia for a couple of weeks and never fail to visit Plitvice.
We left the path and came closer to where the water cascades down. I started taking pictures of the rocks, mosses and water – my first pictures in Plitvice for many years! Crystal clear water, autumn colors and very good smell everywhere, everything was perfect.
The natural barriers creating the Plitvice’s lakes are made of travertine. This is an ongoing biodynamic process. Plitvice is an ever-changing world. Over time, the waters change their course leaving some barriers dry while others are growing up.
The lakes are an incredible cobalt color. The woods are ancient with very huge and old giants living close to young trees. And on the forest floor the dead trunks are slowly decaying preparing the ground for the young plants. There are 1,267 different species of plants including 75 endemic to this area.
The mountains around Plitvice are not very high and are mostly covered by a thick forest of beech, silver fir and spruce; no wonder that in such a place wolves, bears and a multitude of small mammals and birds still roam free.