In the 19th century, charcoal-making was highly developed to meet the needs of the milling industry. Today, the craft is almost extinct, with only a handful of charcoal burners left.
It was necessary to choose a suitable place on the forest floor to build the pile. Open plains with a water source nearby were the most suitable. Around the central part, called the nest, a pile of firewood was stacked in layers, the thickest at first and thinner towards the perimeter. On top of the first pile, a second pile was stacked, and sometimes a third pile. The cooking itself took three weeks, depending on how dry the wood was, how it was stacked, the weather conditions and the care of the charcoal burner.
In Gozd Martuljek, this noble craft is being revived as part of the Charcoal Days on Kopišče, where you can see this fascinating way of processing wood in the flesh. The charcoal burners cover the wood piled in the pits with earth and then cook the charcoal in the pits for 10 to 14 days. The best charcoal is that made from hazel.