ABOUT THE NATIONAL BLUE TRAIL

Attention! This is not an official translation of the SKETCHES OF ROUTE AND VALIDATION BOOKLET OF THE NATIONAL BLUE TRAIL
(You can see my comments in bracket)


INTRODUCTION

I CANNOT UNDERSTAND...

„How others see this region, I cannot understand:
to me, this little country is menaced motherland
with flames around, the world of my childhood swaying far,
and I am grown from this land as tender branches are
from trees. And may my body sink into the soil in the end...”

(written by Miklós Radnóti, translation by Thomas Ország-Land)


OUR DEAR FRIEND,

We greet you with pleasure in the populous company of Blue Trail's Hikers! You are not alone during your hikes, because this booklet is your faithful helpmate with its every data and sketches. Beside this booklet the blue strip trail marks will escort you - or rather lead you - which are painted continuously onto trees, columns and houses along the more than one thousand and one hundred kilometres long route from the top of Írott-kő Mountain until village Hollóháza.

If you will push the stamps, which will become slowly familiar, into your personal completion booklet, think about the many voluntary people, please, who begot and maintain this route in favour of your successful hike, look after the stamps, maintain the roads and paths or labour in other way for the hikers.

This movement helps the better cognition of the parts of our mother country, its constitutions, history and people in the frame of hiking and tourism.

Anybody can goes along the route of the National Blue Trail for his/her own gratification. But the possession of the badge of the Blue Trail is the official and registered acknowledgement of a momentous achivement. Everybody can obtain this badge with the exact observance of the official Announcement, which is written in this booklet.

We wish a lot of everlasting experiences, cheer, good weather, power and health to the long-lasting completion of the National Blue Trail

Magyar Természetbarát Szövetség (MTSZ)
(Hungarian Ramblers' Association “Friends of Nature”)



SKETCHES OF ROUTE AND VALIDATION BOOKLET OF THE NATIONAL BLUE TRAIL

The badge of the National Blue Trail
The badge of the National Blue Trail


The Nature Rambler Section of the Lokomotív Sport Club of Budapest announced the countrywide walk on the “blue” hiking path in 1952.

The Nature Rambler Section's Committee of Railway Employee's Union developed this issue on national level in 1953, and published the first brochure, which showed the whole route in map sketches.

Later the organising and controlling of the National Blue Trail movement was taken over by the Hungarian Rambler's Association “Friends of Nature” (MTSZ) with regard to the big attendance in 1961. So it would be such movement, which are achivable by other naturfriend organisations and private person.

According to the decision of the EWV (Europaiche Wandervereinigung) the National Blue Trail is connected to the net of European Long Distance Hiking Paths. Therefore first the section between Kőszeg town and Budapest, and since 1995 the section between Kőszeg an Sáteraljaújhely town (it is about 95% of the whole route of the Blue Tour) has been a part of the E4 Hiking Path.

This description is the updated version of the “Sketches of Route and Validation Booklet of National Blue Trail” (personal completion booklet), which was published by the MTSZ.

Acknowledgement to András Koleszár and Zoltán Tamás Petró

Works in the field: András Bozó, László Kammel and Vencel Pálmai

Publisher:
Magyar Természetbarát Szövetség
Address: 31 Bajcsy-Zsilinszky Street, H-1065 Budapest
Post address: Pf.: 483, H-1396 Budapest
Phone: +36 1 311 2467, +36 1 311 9289
Fax: +36 1 353 1930
Internet: http://www.termeszetjaro.hu
E-mail: mtszhir@enternet.hu

© MTSZ 2007


THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE NATIONAL BLUE TRAIL
  1. The aim of the National Blue Trail (OKT): The participants of the tour should do sport activity frequently by walking on the route, learn about the life, development and natural beauty of our country, see the everyday life of the different regions, become familiar with the history, and hydrography of the country
  2. The leader of the tour: the Hungarian Rambler's Association “Friends of Nature” (MTSZ).
  3. The route of the tour: the National Blue Trail (OKT or in English NBT) goes between the Irott-kő Mountain of Vas County and Village Hollóháza in Borsod-Abauj-Zemplén County, which is signed with blue stripe marks throughout 1128 kilometres and it is sketched and signed in details in this brochure.
  4. Checkpoints: They are those places or settlements which are marked on the sketches of the brochure, the names of these places are in the framed boxes, which are for the verifications.
  5. Completion of the tour: you can complete it in groups or alone from age of 6, regardless of the nationality , in any direction, divided in any amount of sections on foot or by ski (in all variation). The date and duration of the tour is not limited.
  6. The validation of completion: The participant have to validate the completion of the tour, the reach of every checkpoints. You can do this usually with dating and stamping of the appropriate box in the personal completion booklet. It is needed to stamp at every checkpoint. If this is not possible, it is accepted the stamp of the closest place to the route which is not marked in the brochure. It is necessary to stamp at the start and at the finish of a tour. (Usually you have to start or finish a trip at a checkpoint. So you have to stamp twice at same checkpoint: at the finish of a section and at the start of the next section if these are in two different date. If this checkpoint is at the limit of an official Blue Trail's section, you can find two boxes at this checkpoint in the personal completion booklet. In another case you can find only one box, but you have to stamp twice: first in the box and later above or below it - where you can find enough place. Of course if you only reach a checkpoint and you go further, one stamp is enough.)
    Photos are accepted, if the place and the person together can be clearly recognised. After the completion of the whole path of the tour it is necessary to take the personal completion brochure to the competent nature friend committee in Budapest or in the country, where the completion will be checked and validated, then they will hand over the badge.
  7. The badge of Blue Trail: Anyone, who complets the Blue Tail, obtains the Blue Trail Badge of MTSZ, which is free of charge to that person, who has valid certificate about the membership in MTSZ. Without this certificate it is necessary to pay the actual production price of the badge. The badge is in irregular quadrangle with a road leading towards mountains with a blue marked column and below in red stripe with the following: “Országos Kék-túra MTSZ”. The MTSZ publishes and hands over the badge - if it is possible - with a small ceremony. It keeps record of the people, who completed the Blue Trail.
  8. It is possible to complete the Blue Tail many times. In this case it is necessary to buy the budge.
  9. The MTSZ has announced the Children's Blue Trail (GYKT) with a reduced 300 km distance for the children between 6 and 14, which is divided in 9 regions:

    1. Kőszeg Mountain - Kemeneshát
    2. Highland of Balaton
    3. Bakony Mountains
    4. Vértes Mountains - Gerecse Hills
    5. Pilis Mountains - Buda Hills
    6. Börzsöny Mountans - Cserhát Hills
    7. Mátra Mountains
    8. Bükk Mountains - Aggtelek Hills
    9. Cserehát Hills - Zemplén Mountains

    If the participants have done at least 50 km distance in a county, they obtain the regional badge of Children's Blue Trail (GYKT). If the length of the done sections reaches the 300 km, the children obtain a badge of GYKT. In case of organising and leading a group, the leader can obtain the badge, if the number of the children at least 6 (the payment of the badge: see point 7).
    The participants can get in one region only one badge, independently of the done distance. (The lenght of a region appr. 100 - 150 km. If a child already has a badge in a region, becaue he/she has done at least 50 km in this region, he/she won't get a newer budge, if he/she takes trips in further 50 km lenght in this region.)
    These conditions are valid at the badge for the GYKT, as well.

    The done distance in the GYKT may be included in the OKT, as well. The validation of completion is the same as in the OKT.
  10. Other issues: The route of the OKT cannot be changed by the county ramblers organisations, other local branches or people. The suggestion or demands have to be forwarded to the MTSZ. (The MTSZ is the only authorised organisation to make any changes in the route)


SOME PIECES OF ADVICE

That section of the trail, which is completed and it is validated with stamp according to an earlier published personal completion brochure - so it was valid in the time of the completion - is not necessary to complete and to stamp again according to a newer brochure. On the other hand it is not advisable to begin and to complete a changed or closed section, because there are no stamps on the checkpoints and the route can goes through closed or restricted areas or it is not passable because of other causes.

It is necessary to stamp on that place (in village, at railway station, tourist hostel, forester's lodge), where this is prescribed in the appropriate box of the personal completion booklet. On those railway stations, which names are in bracket (in the personal completion booklet) , you have to stamp only if the start or finish of a trip is on that place. The distance between these buildings and the Blue Trail's route is bigger than 0.5 km. (A lot of people - including me - think, that we should stamp into all of the boxes, because the personal completion brochure will be complete only in this way. But this is only our opinion.)

You can find two sheets of my personal completion booklet here in the following. If you click onto the pictures, they will open in bigger size.

You always have to use the stamp of the Hungarian Rambler's Association “Friends of Nature” (MTSZ) or at the railway stations you have to ask for the dated circle stamp of the stations. Appropriate verification could be the stamp of any company, establishment, local government, school, drug store, agricultural cooperative, community centre, committee or contractor, on which appears the name of the stamping place. It is possible to get a dated (cancellation) stamp in the post offices, but in that case the Hungarian Post may ask you to buy one (sticking) stamp in the brochure.

(This is a very important thing. Unfortunately - very rarely - the stamps of the MTSZ are stolen, or broken. Only in this case the MTSZ accepts the use of other stamps. But there is a website, where you can find the stamps' conditions of every checkpoints: HERE . Unfortunately, this site is available only in Hungarian language. We, hikers always keep this site updated.)

Although this stamping process can be helped by the Hungarian National Railroad Company (MÁV) and with a lot of other contractors, don't take it for granted.

It is useful to bring a stamping (inking) pad on the hike, because the ink supply of the stamps on the area is not realisable.

It is possible in many places, that those buildings that marked in the boxes of the brochure as tourist hostel (tourist shelter), have another function (for example restaurants, holiday resort, etc.), or they are under reconstruction in this moment. The reason of this thing is the following: these types of changes are very frequent and it is not possible to correct the brochure permanently.

In that case, if it is not possible to complete the section on the signed route because of unexpected difficulties (for example mining, woodman's cutting work, closed route, erosion by the rainfall, etc), please tell the exact place to the Walking Tour Committee of the Hungarian Rambler's Association “Friends of Nature” (MTSZ).

Please, also tell Walking Tour Committee of MTSZ other problems found on the route.







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