It is among these green forests, of the valley of the Kamienna River at the slopes of Karkonosze and Jizera Mountains, there spreads a magical garden of history, tradition, beliefs, magic and nature. Its uncrowned ruler is the Mountain Spirit, also known as Karkonosz, Liczyrzepa, or Rzepiór.
He is as unpredictable as the forces of nature. Just like them, he sometimes is ruthless and cruel, sometimes generous and protective. A master in his manor, closely guarding the underground treasures and thoughtfully caring for the living things within his domain. He is perhaps as old as the mountains themselves.
The figure of the Mountain Ruler has been inspiring minds and imagination of those who either lived in Karkonosze or visited them. Many writers and chroniclers wrote about him; it would take a long time to just mention their names. More...
Liczyrzepa is a figure, who gained permanent presence in the contemporary realities of our town.
For over 10 years now, there is the Walloon Brotherhood of Sudetes, operating near Szrenica; it refers to the traditions of the Walloons, the old prospectors of minerals and gems, who came to the area almost a thousand years ago!
Present-day Walloons are mountain people, treasure and gem hunters, but above all, lovers of Szklarska Poręba. They successfully popularize Walloonian ideals among the locals and the tourists coming here to rest.
Our town and its surroundings are best explored by traveling the awarded Magic Trail of the Mountain Spirit. This terrain game, touristic trail, fun, history and nature all in one, is popular among our guests visiting Szklarska Poręba.
In the center of the town, at the Radio 3 Square, there is a metal monument of the Mountain Spirit, made by Grzegosz "Siwy" Pawłowski. Over 3 meters high, this monument has been made of metal with the use of a technique known only by the author. It represents the oldest image of the Mountain Spirit, coming from 1561, made by the German cartographer Martin Helwig.
The sculpture was ordered by the town of Szklarska Poręba, in order to preserve the image of the Ruler of Karkonosze, not as a slouching, bearded old man, but as a powerful guardian of the mountain treasures. The artist had but a sketch of the figure's profile to make the statue of the Mountain Spirit. In order to make the sculpture in three dimensions, Grzegorz Pawłowski had to show a lot of imagination and creativity. The result is worth seeing.
Next to the House of the Brothers Hauptmann(branch of the Karkonosze Museum), the Garden of the Mountain Spirit will be established - a didactic trail devoted to this legendary figure.
The garden is to hold statues of Karkonosz, caverns with Walloonian treasures, and imitations of mining tunnels. There are also plans for children playgrounds with an open panorama of the Karkonosze. The Karkonosze Museum already exhibits a permanent exhibition on Rzepiór.
Karkonosz is a living legend which joins modern Szklarska Poręba with its history. He reminds us every day that we are living in a magical place, where the beauty of nature is intertwined with the latest achievements of modern civilization.
The Mountain Spirit points at our past, so we can look for inpiration to enrich Szklarska Poręba - the Magic Town of the Mountain Spirit.