Podtrosecká Údolí - valleys under Trosky
Troskovice, 512 63
You are standing right in the heart of the Bohemian Paradise, a picturesque region spread along the middle reaches of the Jizera River and given its name in the late 19th century by visitors to the nearby Sedmihorky spa. In 1955 the Bohemian Paradise was declared the first protected landscape area in what was then Czechoslovakia, and now covers an area of 181 km2.
Vidlák pond, alongside which runs the road from Troskovice to Hrubá Skála, was built in the 16th century in the wetlands of the Trosky Valley. The Trosky Valley nature reserve is the largest wetland complex in the Bohemian Paradise. It is home to many protected plant species, such as the marsh helleborine, the round-leaved sundew and the marsh grass of Parnassus, and is also a habitat for protected fauna such as the river kingfisher, the Eurasian teal, the great reed warbler and the common reed bunting. The area was declared a nature reserve in 1999, and covers an area of 1.4 km2.
Covering an area of 3.8 hectares, the Vidlák Peat Bog lies between Vidlák and the neighbouring Hrudka pond. This is one of the most valuable and largest peat bog habitats in the Bohemian Paradise. It takes the form of a valley peat meadow, draining into the Libuňka and Žehrovka streams.
The Trosky Valley Nature Trail runs from Borek to Trosky, taking you past most of the ponds in the area. The very first is the Rokytňák pond, on the embankment of which there is a bird-watching hide, from which you can enjoy a beautiful view of Trosky Castle, the symbol of the Bohemian Paradise. The trail continues past the Hrudka, Vidlák and Krčák ponds and leads along the Jordánka stream to Věžák. It then turns off to Podsemínský pond, from where it continues to the train to Malechovice. However, you can leave the trail and return past Nebákov pond via Trosky back to Borek.
By Vidlák pond there is a footpath signpost, a refreshments stand, a car park and an official camp site. A scene from the famous comedy film Jak dostat tatínka do polepšovny (How to Get Dad Into Reform School) was shot on the southern end of the embankment. You might remember the postman, played by Petr Nárožný, who rides into the pond on an old motorbike and yells out in surprise: "Wa-water sprite, and he called me Fanda!"