Culture & entertainment
Czarny Dunajec Tourist subregion: Krakowski
tel. +48 501816189
Type of entertainment attractions: Other
There is not any other profession in Poland which is such family profession as sheep grazing. Each baca had a teacher in his family – his father, grandfather, uncle who introduced him into the world of day-to-day, hard work in the mountain pastures and in the hut. Along the Oscypek Route, this rule is best seen in the hut in Baligówka, where Jan Hyrczyk works as baca. In nearby Jabłonka, his father, Stanisław takes care of the herd of 700 sheep and both gentlemen are helped by Jan’s younger brother – Andrzej who is juhas.Every year, on 23 April, the day of St. Wojciech, the spring redyk sets off to the mountain pastures. The herds composed of sheep belonging to many gazdowie, who entrust them to bacowie to care for, leave townlets and villages and wander towards the mountain pastures full of juicy grass. In the past, people measured the amount of milk given by each animal before leaving for grazing and then in the autumn, when they returned to the farms. On this basis, it was calculated how many oscypki should be given to the owner. Now, this tradition disappeared. Until recently, it has existed in a residual form, because gazdowie left on the day of St. Jan, milked their sheep and depending on the amount of milk they got an adequate number of cheeses. The spring redyk is a great holiday, which for most juhasi and many bacowie means saying goodbye to their homes for five months because work with sheep is a way of life and means duties seven days a week. This is evidenced by Jan Hyrczyk, whose koliba is located at the road from Czarny Dunajec to Jabłonka. Young baca, after his wedding in June, spent his honeymoon and following weeks…on working in the hut. But the family tradition obliges. - When Jasiek was at kindergarten, I took him on holiday – laughs Stanisław Hyrczyk, senior of the family, who is baca in nearby Jabłonka. At the age of 16, after leaving school, young Jan worked as juhas in the Bieszczady Mountains, then in Silesia. His younger brother Andrzej, whom we can also meet sometimes in Baligówka, also wants to follow this way. It is worth stopping here to have a cup of żentyca and a few slices of oscypek, feel the family atmosphere and enjoy the warm wind, bringing a jingle of sheep bells from the nearby meadows.