Peaks of the Balkans

A hike is always a good thing. Add in mountains and it gets even better. Choose a trail long enough for an overnight campout and it is becoming worthy of a planned adventure. Now add in 3 countries and 192 km of trail in sparsely inhabited, picture-perfect Photoshop-not-required beauty, and you have something epic. You have the Peaks of the Balkans.

Katuns (huts) in the Bogićevica mountain area in Montenegro

This transnational hiking trail traverses what the Peaks of the Balkans map refers to as the “wildest and most untouched mountain range in the Western Balkans.” It takes 10 days to two weeks to trek the whole distance. The adventure can begin in the small mountain town of Plav, Montenegro; Pejë or Peć, Kosovo (the city is referred to by both names); or Theth, Albania. Wherever you start your journey, you’ll need to get approval in advance for the multiple border crossings.

Glacial lake on a peak in Kosovo - Liqeni Tropojs, 2230 m

Glacial lake on Mt. Dobrodol in Albania

Along the way you’ll see numerous glacial lakes in some unbelievable settings. Above is a snow encircled lake at 2230 m high on a peak in Kosovo from which you have an unbelievable view looking out at eye level to peaks in front of you. This second reflective glacial lake is on  Mt. Dobrodol in Albania.

View from the top of Mt. Bardh in Albania

This area of the Balkans is the last spot for snow to melt. Winters here are hard with snow being measured on the peaks in meters. The thaw leads to a later spring and a hiking season that begins usually around June and runs into October. Drifts and avalanche potential make this a harsh environment for winter sports in its current condition.

Kershi i Kocajve in Albania

For more information, check out the Peaks of the Balkans official site.

Photos are courtesy of Ahmet Rekovic who is mountain guide extraordinaire out of Plav, Montenegro and a friend of Meanderbug.

6 comments

  1. More information on the Peaks of the Balkans here zbulo.org/peaks-of-the-balkans/ – happy to support individual visitors.
    Plenty of pictures from our previous trips, hope you enjoy 🙂 https://plus.google.com/photos/+ZbuloDiscoverAlbania/albums

    1. Great pics! We may look you up the next time we’re in Albania! B-)

      1. Jeff, any plans to visit Albania this year? We’re also working on the Via Dinarica extension and some other projects.

        1. Ricardo – not sure when we’ll be in Albania next. I have made a few trips there recently. Let’s plan to connect next time. I will look you up.

        2. We live very close-by in Bar, Montenegro. We do day trips to or through Albania every so often.

  2. Pingback:The Long Trail: 3 Tips for Thru Hike Preparation - Meanderbug

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