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Climbing the Julian Alps. At Korita Soce, the Soca River carves its way through a narrow gorge.

Climbing the Julian Alps. At Korita Soce, the Soca River carves its way through a narrow gorge.

Photographer: Marko Prezelj for Bloomberg Businessweek

Pursuits
Businessweek

How Hiking May Hold the Key to Slovenia’s Tourism Future

Legendary mountaineer Ales Cesen aims to do for Slovenia what adventure travel did for Iceland.

The first time I met Slovenian mountaineer Ales Cesen, we were snowshoeing across an ice cap in Iceland, about 2,000 miles from his native country.

It was only October, but winter had come early that year, and the climate was particularly dour, even by local standards. Unhindered by the mist and hail, Cesen made just one noise: a rhythmic slooping sound as his feet dragged along the glacier. Perhaps it was his hiker’s stoicism. Or maybe he was just peeved about the weather.