Rating the Tour (With Hiking Standards)
The grading system for hiking and scrambling routes is here.
0. General: From 600 m (or 900 m) on 2224 m, the slopes are turned towards the W and the S. Easy ascent through the woods till below "Lojtra" rock step. The passage over the 50 m high step is very steep and on the narrow ledge protected with a steel cable. Above first some steep terrain through pine bushes, then a nice, flat valley with two huts (closed in winter and spring). The summit part is first a bit steeper, but broad, above very nice, easy terrains. Gear: Usual tour skiing equipment, ice pick and crampons to overcome the rocky step. In not very good conditions a short rope can be useful.
1. Effort: cca 1630m, 5h.
2. Power: 3 - Medium (over "Lojtra" step).
3. Psyche: 5 - Very difficult (if you really ski over "Lojtra" or 3/4 - Medium/Hard if you descend properly protected).
4. Orientation: 2 - Easy (the upper part can be difficult in fog).
OverviewKalški greben is a long ridge mountain, which has in summer two main ascent directions: from the north and from the south. While the northern variants are short and medium hard ferratas, the southern variants are also appropriate for tour skiing. There are three ski routes:
1. From Krvavec ski resort.
2. Over Vrh Korena.
3. From Kokra valley or from Roblek farm just above it.
The ascent from Roblek farm is a very nice, but in one detail also a hard tour with big altitude difference. The upper 600 meters are ideal for tour skiing. Once, there were even plans to build an ordinary ski resort there. "Lojtra" rocky step is a candy by its own. You rarely ski by a 1 meter or less wide ledge, holding for a steel cable. But the passage is short. The lower part (above Roblek farm) depends on snow quality. It's fine in good conditions, but the woods can become dense if snow is hard for skiing. The view from the top of Kalški greben is excellent.
See the main page of Kalški greben and Kamnik & Savinja Alps for a broader orientation!
You approach the trailhead by the main road from Kranj (or Ljubljana) via Preddvor into the valley of Kokra river (the road over Jezersko saddle / Seeberg Sattel). After passing the church of Kokra village, you reach the village of Podlebelca, 600 m. You park by the main road, or, if the mountain road is cleaned, you drive up already from Spodnja Kokra (by the church) till Roblek Farm, cca 900 m.
By the mountain road (or marked shortcuts) you reach first the Roblek Farm (45 min). From there, the mountain road continues some more in the eastern direction, then you continue by the valley, following the marked path. Till some 1300 m you will walk up through the woods, allways in the eastern direction. Orientation is not hard, because the side walls of Kalški greben (on the left) and Krvavec (on the right) are squeezing the valley more and more. Finally you get out of woods and after a short ascent find yourself in a shady corner (opened towards the west). In winter it looks bad there, at a first glance you don't see any chance for a passage over the steep, rocky valley step. But it's worth going up where the passage opens (if you're lucky, you might find steps in snow to find the entry).
You enter the rocks from the corner, the passage goes towards the left. At first it is a steep snow ramp, then the path climbs in a few turns up and finally catches a ledge which crosses above the abyss to the left. A steel cable will help you if there's not too much snow. Arrange protection if needed! The exposed passage is only some 15 meters long, then you exit into a steep slope, overgrown with pine bushes. You go directly upwards and soon the slope gets less steep. You reached the lower part of Dolga Njiva valley. By its flat valley bed you proceed some 15 more minutes to the hut - a very appropriate and nice place for a rest.
From the hut the route goes some good 100 meters up the valley, then you start ascending over the left (northern) slopes. The direction is towards the NE. You ascend some 100 meters and reach the saddle, called Škrbina, 1870 m, the lowest part between Vrh Korena (on the right) and Kalški greben (on the left). There you turn left. The summit ascent goes by a nice, a bit slanted plateau-like terrain in the NW direction. The terrain is karstic, you notice many shallow valleys and rocky bumps, all is overgrown by dwarf pine, but in winter there is usually an undulated gentle snow field. In an hour or less you reach the edge above the western wall of Kalški greben, from that point the summit is already very close. Only the last turn on the right and you are on the highest point.
You ski down all the time by the ascent route. Depending on snow conditions, you can keep in the upper part also more towards the right (west). But there must be enough snow. In any case you reach Dolga Njiva and the rest of the descent you have nothing to choose. Over "Lojtra" passage think if you will do it with skis on your boots. Those few meters of sliding can make you proud to ski over an exposed, short ferrata passage, but you will also not loose a crown if you carry your skis on your rucksack and protect properly. Everything depends on snow conditions.