What's New On This Page?January 1st, 2005 - Inserted links to the new page: Rodica.
OverviewThe South Bohinj Ridge (or the Lower Bohinj Ridge) is one of the longest compact ridges of Julian Alps. This is the first chain of high mountains looking to the Slovenian part of Julian Alps from the south. Like a giant arch it encircles from south the primeval Bohinj valley, causing that this beautiful part of the World, being on the north surrounded by even higher Triglav group, stayed for centuries withdrawn from the rest of the country. Even today sayings spread around that Bohinj people are descendants of ancient Celtic people, who lived in these mountains before Slavic people came. It is also interesting that on south terraces of these mountains in the 13th century German people immigrated. Even 350 years ago their delegation went every year in South Tirol, praying the God to preserve their fields from greedy grasshoppers.
The ridge stretches around 30km in the east-west direction and is from 7 to 15 km wide. On north its border is the Bohinj valley (the valley of Sava Bohinjka river). From south these mountains are bounded by rivers Bacha, Tolminka (both tributes of Socha) and Socha itself. On west the Lepoche valley separates the South Bohinj Ridge from the Krn group and while the ridge gradually turns north it is considered that it geographically ends with the Vratca Pass (also: Bohinjska Vratca, 1803m). On east the Bohinj Pass separates the group from lower foothills stretching further towards east.
If you expect that Julian Alps consist only of high, vertical walls and wild ridges you might be dissapointed with South Bohinj Ridge. These mountains are steep, but because of their relatively low altitude they are grassy and thus offering hiking and tour skiing possibilities. The highest peak of the group is Tolminski Kuk, 2085m. Although these mountains are not very high because of deep valleys the altitude difference is very considerable. Tolmin, one of the points of departure on south, lies only 200m above the sea level and Bohinj lake on the other side lies 525m above the sea level.
Highlights of the groupThe character of the South Bohinj Ridge is Alpine. Although peaks hardly reach the 2000m limit the whole group from the peak of Chrna prst towards west nowhere lowers below the 1700m limit. So you can imagine why the most recommendable hiking is crossing the whole ridge. The tour can be done in two days. Hiking over the ridge is rewarded by an amazing panorama: towards south and east the rest of hilly Slovenia, ending with the Adriatic coast, towards north and west the highest Julian Alps peaks with his Majesty Triglav in the centre.
In early summer the South Bohinj Ridge is known by it's abundance of flora. Besides late autumn this is the most beutiful season for hiking.
A special natural phenomenon is also the high carst plateau of Komna. Shattered limestone rocks are covered with dwarf pines, so outside paths the terrain is extremely hardly passable. But in winter this plateau changes into a white sea of soft hills, ideal for cross-country skiing.
Last but not least we must mention the tranquil Bohinj lake, more than 4 km long and almost 1 km wide mountain pearl and Savica river, its tributary, best known by it's beautiful, more than 50m high source waterfall.
Important peaksStarting from east some most important peaks of the group are:
Crna prst, 1844m,
Vrh nad Shkrbino, 2054m,
Podrta gora, 2061m,
Tolminski Kuk, 2085m,
Getting ThereThe South Bohinj Ridge mountains can be reached from south and from north. From south you follow the dreamy beautiful valley of Socha river. You will nowhere in Europe find a river of a such light blue colour. If in a small town Most na Sochi (The Bridge on Socha) you turn right (eastwards), you will enter the Bacha valley and reach the east part of the group. Through this valley also the railroad goes (and through a tunnel further on in Bohinj).
Driving north you will soon reach Tolmin. From there narrow mountain valleys go further north, reaching the base of the western part of our group.
From south a few mountain roads climb up to remote villages and hamlets, which can be used as departure points of mountain tours. But they all lie quite low, up to 800 m of altitude.
From north the Bohinj valley can be reached by a good road from the well known tourist resort of Bled. But again, the road goes only by the south bank of the Bohinj lake and the mountaineer must climb the whole height difference to mountain peaks. If you have a good map, perhaps you will find a forrest road, starting in Bohinjska Bistrica and climbing up to the altitude of 1000 meters.
From the west bank of Bohinj lake a cable car can take you to the altitude of 1540 m (Rjava skala). This is one of the most renowned panoramic points in Slovenian Julian Alps, opened to the mass tourism. In winter there is also a good ski resort.
RoutesRoutes in the South Bohinj Ridge mountains are hiking routes. Only few boulders in valleys are appropriate for the climbing sport. The majority og hiking routes is not hard, but some of them require experience and some are also assured with pegs and steel ropes. Many routes are well marked (red circle with a white spot inside), but there are also many old shepards, hunters and forresters paths which can require good scouting skills.
Concerning mountain routes there can be many interesting combinations. They can be described later. Here I will only outline the Grand crossing of the whole ridge:
1. Reach Chrna prst (1844m) - either from Bohinjska Bistica (3h 30min), from Podbrdo (3h 30min) or from Sorishka planina (4-5h). In the last case you will really do the whole ridge.
2. Continue hiking over the main ridge to Vogel (1922m). A well marked path goes mainly by the top of the ridge. After 4 hours you will be drunk of panoramic views!
3. Descend south to Kocha na planini Razor (hut, 1315m). There enjoy best-ever home made meal and sleep over night.
4. Ascend Vrh nad Shkrbino (2054m) and continue by the top of the ridge westwards. Over Kuk the marked path goes all the way to Vratca (Pass, 1803m). You will need almost 7 hours to here and from there, you still need to descend. The best option is Bohinj (4 hours).
Tour skiingThere are several beautiful ski tours, here I will mention only a few:
1. Rodica (1966m) is one of the classics here. The peak can be reached from the forrest road above Bohinj valley or from the ski resort Vogel. If you use lifts, they bring you to the altitude of about 1800m, then you descend below the main ridge towards east, climb the main ridge at Suha saddle (1773m) and proceed to the top (3h). The ski tour goes down through Suha valley and by forrest roads in Bohinj (1400m).
2. Vogel-Komna is a ski crossing, where you don't necessarilly reach any of the high peaks but is known by beautiful landscape. Ski resort Vogel (1800m) - Planina Zadnji Vogel (1413m) - Konjsko sedlo (1782m) - under Podrta gora (cca 1800m) - Planina Govnjach (1475m) - Dom na Komni (1520m) - Bohinj valley (Savica, 653m).
3. Komna plateau offers you several ski tours with the altitude difference up to 500 meters. The best peaks are: Podrta gora (2061m), Mahavshchek (2008m) and Bogatin (1977m) and ov course several more peaks towards north, not belonging to the South Bohinj Ridge any more.
Red TapeNo limitations. Keep nature as it is now. The whole range is part of a national park. If you are carying a tent you can sleep anywhere, but leave no trace behind. Have in mind that these mountains almost completely lack water.
When To ClimbEarly summer is best to admire flora. But in June days are rarely clear here. It is still best to choose a clear day with best visibility. These are most common in autumn. In winter many peaks can be reached by skis - offering some best possibilities for tour skiing. All best ski descents go towards north.
CampingFrom east the most useful mountain huts (kocha = mountain hut) are:
Litostrojska kocha, 1306m,
Dom Zorka Jelinchicha, 1835m (on the peak of Chrna Prst),
Ski hotel Vogel, 1540m, Tel.: +386 4 572 13 01,
Kocha na planini Razor, 1315m, Tel.: +386 050 632 720,
Kocha pri Savici, 653m (in Bohinj valley), Tel.: +386 050 622 695,
Dom na Komni, 1520m, Tel.: +386 4 572 14 75, +386 050 611 221,
Kocha pod Bogatinom, 1513m,
Dom pri Krnskih jezerih, 1385m.
In Bohinj, by the lake there is a good camping place.
In Bohinj valley and around Tolmin you can find some hotels and private rooms.
Mountain ConditionsWeather: see the official page for Slovenia here.
Even better site is wunderground - here's the direct link to Kredarica station, 2515m (below Triglav summit).