The trip is long. The Old Svalich road is old and in need of repair: here and there steel grey pools of water block much of the path and force you to travel single file. Along the edges, tall and broad oak trees—surely older than any of you have ever seen—cast diffuse and haunting shadows. The cold clinging mist makes the journey miserable, and you have to stop occasionally to rub down Artax's joints.
Shortly before you stop for a midday meal, you encounter a gate. The stone walls flanking it extend some distance into the forest, and the massive rusting iron gates are unmanned. As you approach, however, the gates swing open, and as you pass through they close with a certain finality.
Finally, a few minutes after sundown, the party sees the town. It lies in a small valley, surrounded by hills, and mist blankets it, thicker than any you've yet seen since your arrival. There are no lights in windows like you saw in the village of Svalich, no torches moving through the fog, no sign of life, or, for that matter of unlife.