Mt. Risnjak is a mountain situated in northern part of Croatia in province Gorski kotar, also called "The great green heart of Croatia" because of its untouched nature and hundred year old mountain forrests. Risnjak is part of Dinaric mountain system which connects Alps and Dinarids, and its special position results its heterogical flora and fauna. The name of mountain came from Croatian term "Ris" which means lynx, a famous predator which was exterminated from that area in 19th century. Because of its natural beauty, rare and preserved plants and animals Risnjak was proclaimed a national park in 1953, and today is one of eight national parks of Croatia. The main peaks in Risnjak masiff are Veliki Risnjak (1528m), Juzni mali Risnjak (1248m), Sjeverni mali Risnjak (1434m), Snjeznik (1505m) and Guslica (1490m). Climate here is during summer warm, and rainy in spring and autumm, but in winter is very cold, the snow lies almost 5 months and falls up to 4 meters deep at Risnjak s hut "Sclosserov dom". The Sclosser s hut is probably one of most beautiful mountain huts in Croatia. Nearby of Risnjak in Gerovo area is a famous source of river Kupa which is an oval pond underneath vertical rocks some 50m high. Source is composited of two vertical channels one 86m deep, and a second 57m. On Risnjak people usually climb during whole year, but in winter gets tricky becouse of low temperature, high amounts of snow and that is only for expirienced winter climbers.
Routes to Risnjak are from Gornje Jelenje pass over Rijeka, and forrest road from there leads to four entrances in western part of the National park - these entrances are Vilje, Cajtige, Lazac and Segina. Climbing around that area is not difficult, the routes are wery well marked and all visitors will be rewarded with famous views of deep forrest around.
Not far from this area is a town Skrad (700m alt.)where is possible to visit a rare natural beauties Vraziji prolaz (the Devil s passage) - a narrow 1800m long canyon carved by the spring, cave Muzeva hiza, and a Zeleni vir (the Green whirpool) - a cave with a 70m cliff overhanging the entrence. A small and beautiful waterfall falls from the cliff and makes a shimmering curtain of water particles in air.
As mentioned early Risnjak could be reached from west from Gornje Jelenje and Platak (mountain hotel above Rijeka), from north by Lazac and Segina by Larmina bajta, from south by Zelin Crnoluski with narrow asphalt road.
Main target of climbing there is the peak of Veliki Risnjak above hut "Schlosserov dom" (1400m), and peaks Mali Risnjak, Snjeznik and Guslica.
1. By "Horvatova staza": -marked footpath goes from Bijela Vodica to Podi, Vucija jama, Stara lugarnica, crossing at boundary stone 51 and up to a Sclosser s hut.
2. Second path goes from Leska to Medvjedja vrata crossing then goes to Mali juzni Risnjak and finally to hut.
3. From Platak path goes via Rimska cesta to Snjeznik than path thru Cajtige and with Pelcerova staza to Sclosser s hut. From hut to the peak of Veliki Risnjak is about 30.minutes of climbing. From Snjeznik is not far to go to the next peak Guslica.
4. North route from Lazac path leads to Podcajtige, then steeply to Gric, than goes to Schlosser s hut.
5. Easisest way is with car to Vilje, than shortly to Medvjedja vrata and Schlosser s hut-requires about 1,30 hours of walking.
Since Risnjak is National park permit is required,and strict rules of behaviour in nature are required, entering in park costs about 40 Kn, parking passes aren t required. Entering fees can be payed in the entrance of National park in Bela Vodica or in Schlosser s hut.
When To Climb
Climbing on Risnjak is most usually from May to October, and is much harder in winter, only for snow and ice specialists.
Camping is not allowed on the territory of National park, but visitors can sleep in hotel in Bele Vodice, hotel Platak, and huts on Snjeznik and Schlossers dom. Information about fees can be provided by Croatian Mounteneering association
There aren t webcams there, and for weather conditions find info at DHMZ- http://vrijeme.hr/aktpod.html
- NP Risnjak
Homepage of the National Park of Risnjak
Croatian weather web page
- Gorski Kotar
Web page of Gorski Kotar which includes Risnjak region