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Mountains & Rocks



Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Macedonia, Europe

Lat/Lon: 41.59720°N / 20.55297°E

Object Title: Krchin

Activities: Mountaineering

Season: Winter

Elevation: 7680 ft / 2341 m


Page By: punkrunner

Created/Edited: Dec 12, 2006 / Dec 13, 2006

Object ID: 251032

Hits: 5520 

Page Score: 85.36%  - 20 Votes 

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Golem Krchin - east face
Golem Krchin (2341m)
Krchin Mountain is a mountain situated on the border between Macedonia and Albania, near the city of Debar (Macedonia). Just under the Krchin are few villages (Vele Brdo, Rostushe, Bitushe) and famous monastery st. Jovan Bigorski. This is the area populated mostly by Macedonian Muslims (torbeshi), but also Macedonian and Albanians.

On north - practically connected with Krchin is Deshat Mountain with highest peek Velibar (2373m). More on north is Korab Mountain. On the south is artificial Debar Lake which collects water from Crni Drim River (river which flows in and out from Ohrid Lake - more on south). On the east is Bistra Mountain (Mavrovo National Park) and famous Galichnik and Mavrovo villages. On the west is Valley of Crni Drim River in Albania with Magellare city.

Golem Krchin (2341m) is the highest peek on this mountain. Other three peeks above 2000m are Rudina (2238m), Deli Senica (2174m) and Crvena plocha (2107m). All peaks are rocks, some of them very steep.

Getting There

Rudina peek on Krchin mountain (2238m)
Rudina peek (2238m)
Valley under Golem Krchin
Valley with small church
From Skopje you follow west highway - Tetovo, Gostivar. After you should turn right to Mavrovo and continue until you see road sign Rostushe (just after st. Jovan Bigirski monastery).

If weather permits you can go by car to Bitushe village, and even higher to Draga place (1100m) where asphalt road ends. There is abandoned army watchtower - small house and big football field. We left our cars there and from that point (Draga) start our trip to Golem Krchin. If you go on the right (north) you can go to Deshat mountain and climb Velivar or visit some of beautiful mountain lakes.

Path goes first by the Bitushka River, and some hundreds meters later there is not so well marked path on south-west. Path goes under big rocks structure. You will find few small creeks on your way. When you climb to approx. 1900m you will see Golem Krchin. From there you can choose harder steep way from north side of the peek, or you can pass small valley on the left and climb the peek from south side (easier).

View from Golem Krchin is magnificent. If it is a good day you can see many peeks in Macedonia (Korab, whole Shar Planina, Solunska Glava, Karadzica, Pelister, Kajmakchalan, even Olympus in Greece). I think you can see Adriatic Sea too.
View toward Prokletije
Toward Prokletije

On the peek you will find remaining of small church (st. Metamorphosis - sv.Preobrazenie). New church was build around 1950 year lower on valley between Golem Krchin and Rudina peeks (where easier path goes). Every year there on August 19 there are celebration on st. Metamorphosis. People come from surrounding places (from Macedonia and from Albania too) and there is all-night celebration.

There is mountaineering club "Krchin" with Mr. Mojso Fidanoski as president. He is in Bitushe on weekdays and is very helpful. He can suggest different paths and places to see. We have initiative to mark (refresh with new color) most important paths on Krchin and Deshat Mountain.

Area is reach with wildlife: eagles, wild goats, bears.

When To Climb

You can climb during all year seasons, but best period is May - when beautiful waterfalls can be viewed under the big rocks near Bitushka River. In winter you should be beware of avalanches because terrain is very steep and use of crampons and ice axes are recommended. Golem Krchin is accessible from south. North path include some risk because of very steep rocks. East and west part requires climbing equipment. Especially Albanian side is very extreme with some 300m rock walls. Generally Albanian side has steeper approach.

Red Tape

Under the rocks on Krchin Mountain
Rocks on Krchin Mountain
Whole Mountain is in Macedonian Albanian border area. You should go to the police station Skopje or in Debar and give list of climbers and planned route. List can be posted by fax too. On the terrain you may find nobody, or, eventually, some hunters.


Krchin Map 1:25000
Krchin Map - 1:25000
Map of Krchin and Deshat - 1:50000
Krchin and Deshat Map - 1:50000

External Links

Makpetrol mountineering club (on Macedonian)


On the way downValley under Golem KrchinGolem KrchinRudina peek on Krchin mountain (2238m)Debar LakeUnder the rocks on Krchin MountainView toward Prokletije
Golem Krchin - north faceVillages under KrchinGolem Krchin - east faceGolem Krchin and KorabMap of Krchin and Deshat - 1:50000Krchin Map 1:25000Watchtower near v.Bitushe
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