"Wait, this can't be our train stop. There's literally no snow."
As the train chugged up-valley and into the mountains, I chatted with the train conductor, the only person aboard who spoke any English.
Kt Miller and I would occasionally look out the windows, noting how there was absolutely no snow in sight. Everyone on the train was wearing shorts and t-shirts. We had ski bags and down jackets.
The train came to a stop, and the conductor interrupted our conversation to tell me that this was our stop.
"Oh, no, that can't be right. We're here to go skiing. I guess we're going higher to find some snow," I replied.
"This is your stop. Bucegi mountains. Sinaia, Brasov, you exit here," he checked our tickets to confirm.
"Um..." Kt mumbled.
Two days before, Kt was in Alaska and I was in Iceland, and we were each having terrible luck finding safe mountains to climb and ski.
A couple of weeks before that, we'd chatted online and decided to try to ski somewhere new to us. Romania wasn't close to either of us, so we figured that ought to be good.
We bought tickets and met, en-route, in Frankfurt. The next day, we landed in Bucharest--which I thought I'd heard of, until I realized I was thinking of Budapest.
I figured something must be wrong. We must be in the wrong place. The mountains looked better for biking than skiing.
But over the next two weeks, Kt and I found some of the most interesting skiing of my life.
photos Kt Miller, ktmillerphotography.com
location Bucegi Mountains, Romania