This page was created anew in September 2018.
Polish hikers often start the walk at Lysá Poľana/Łysa Polana
, right on the Poland-Slovakia border, at the mouth of the Bielovodská dolina (White Water Valley
), where there is a Slovak bus terminus and car park. If you are travelling by Zakopane minibus (signed for Morskie Oko), this will be the second last stop. (Tell the driver you want to get off there as most passengers will be heading for Morskie Oko.) From Lysá Poľana buses go to Poprad via Starý Smokovec
, where you can start your hike south of the Tatras. Starý Smokovec is part of Vysoké Tatry town
, which is in fact a string of resort towns and villages along the southern boundary of the Tatras, served by a road and a railway (tram) line. A few of those settlements have a trailhead for either the Velická or the Veľká Studená valleys and Starý Smokovec have both.
You must keep to waymarked trails. Bivouacking is not permitted. After dark you are supposed to leave the national park (unless you are staying in a mountain hut). The trails above huts are closed for hikers from 1 November to 15 June.
Moon over Vychodná Vysoká
Rock & Winter Climbing
You must be a member of a rock climbing club
. Just before your climb, you should write it into the register kept in a nearby mountain hut/your hotel. (Make sure you sign it on return too!) During the approach you must stick to the traditionally used routes described in rock climbing guidebooks. Bivouacking on the wall is only allowed in an emergency. Except for winter, you must not do a route that is easier than UIAA grade III (approx. YDS grade 5.3) unless on descent. The funny thing is that the last rule does not apply to those hiking/scrambling with a licensed guide whom they have paid some €200 for looking after them.
MapsONLINE MAP on hiking.sk
As for the analogue maps, there are many options readily available, for example please have a look here
Names & GlossaryVychodná Vysoká (Slovak)
- Vychodná translates as East/Eastern
Mała Wysoka (Polish) Kleine Vysoka
(German) Kis-Viszoka (Hungarian)
- Mała/Kleine/Kis translates as Little
The west face seen from Poľský hrebeň pass
Glossary (Slovak/Polish = English)
štít (pronounced shtit
)/szczyt = peak
hrebeň/grzebień = crest
)/ = pass/saddle
dolina/dolina = valley
potok/potok = creek
) = tarn
chata/schronisko/ = hut
poľana/polana = clearing/glade
Východná Vysoká seen from ESE
W face of Vychodná Vysoká & Zamrznuté pleso
The peak stands on the main ridge of the High Tatras between Poľský hrebeň/Polski Grzebień (Polish Crest)
passes. It is the fourth highest Tatra peak accessible by waymarked trail. Its northwest walls form the imposing headwall of the Litvorová Valley (and arguably of the Svišťová valley as well!). At its foot, in the cirque at 2047 m sits Zamrznuté pleso/Zmarzły Staw (Frozen Tarn)
, which is the source of Litvorový Creek, a tributary of the Biela Voda/Biała Woda (White Water
). Vychodná Vysoká sends a huge lateral ridge to the ESE, with such peaks as Bradavica/Staroleśny
at 2476 and Slavkovský
at 2452m. The ridge divides the Velická Valley from the Velká Studená Valley. The gentle side of Vychodná Vysoká is its southern side. Its northwest and northeast faces are precipitous. The same goes for the stretch of the main ridge dropping to Prielom pass (probably UIAA 3). As far as the waymarked crest between Poľský hrebeň pass and the summit is concerned, its lowest one third is a bit of a scramble, whereas the rest is a rather mundane walk-up. Vychodná Vysoká, which seems to attract few rock climbers, is climbed by many hikers for spectacular, panoramic views from the summit.
The ESE ridge with Bradavica (centre) and Slavkovský štít (left)
SW view from summit
TrailsFrom Łysa Polana/Lysá poľana via Bielovodská dolina
Distance: 14 km Total elevation gain: 1570m Time (up): 5.5hr
This is both the most scenic (at least in my opinion) and the least frequented trail as most Slovak hikers prefer a circuit from Vysoké Tatry town. Just bear in mind that bears like the valley as well!
The highest stretch of the valley through which the waymarked trail runs is called the Litvorová dolina. Just past Zamrznuté pleso, below the trail junction below Poľský hrebeň, is one unpleasantly wet, a little exposed, chain-assisted YDS class 3 spot.
From Vysoké Tatry town via Veľká Studená dolina
Distance: nearly 12km Total elevation gain: about 1650m Time (up): 6hr
Stunning scenery. The quickest option would be to make use of the Starý Smokovec–Hrebienok funicular railway at the start of your hike. It would save you over two kilometres’ walk and 260m of ascent. Before you get to Poľský hrebeň pass, you will have to cross Prielom/Rohatka pass. The descent down its west side is exposed and has iron chains and rungs (YDS class 3).
From Vysoké Tatry town via Velická dolina
Distance: about 10km Total elevation gain: over 1450m Time (up): 4.5-5hr
The shortest route of the three. Just before Poľský hrebeň pass is a short chain-assisted section, less demanding than the one on the trail through Prielom/Rohatka pass described below.
Poľský hrebeň and trail above it
Surely you can combine two of the above trails instead of doing a there-and-back hike. Regardless of which trail you take, you will have to get to the pass of Poľský hrebeň before summiting Východná Vysoká. (The first two of the above trails join several dozen metres below the pass, northwest of it.) Above the pass the hike (there-and-back) is a walk-up combined with a bit of a scramble, taking up to three quarters of an hour on the way up. Its first part is more interesting, occasionally chain-assisted (going at YDS class 2 with a couple of class 3 spots) whereas the final stretch is rather tedious.
- plenty of options in the town of Vysoké Tatry.
- a hotel called Sliezsky Dom in the Velická dolina at 1670m, 2.5hrs walk to the summit
- a mountain hut known as Zbojníčka (Zbojnícka chata) in the Veľká Studená dolina at 1960m, 4hrs walk to the summit
- NO mountain hut in the Bielovodská dolina
- Hostel by the Climbing Wall at 970m, 100m from the former border checkpoint at Lysá Poľana
Mountain Conditions & Rescue
Zamrznuté pleso (literally Frozen Tarn) at valley head just west of summit on 29 July 2005 - photo by dalton1
Winter Climbing Photos