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Hiking trail recommended route Stage 2

High Scardus Trail Stage 02 Mountain Hut Ljuboten - Brezovica

· 2 reviews · Hiking trail · Kosovo
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High Scardus Trail Organization
  • High Scardus Trail Stage 02 Mountain Hut Ljuboten - Brezovica: view to the range of the Sharr Mountains and the next stages at the descent to Brezovica.
    High Scardus Trail Stage 02 Mountain Hut Ljuboten - Brezovica: view to the range of the Sharr Mountains and the next stages at the descent to Brezovica.
    Photo: Matthew Nelson, CC BY-ND, High Scardus Trail Organization
m 2200 2000 1800 1600 1400 12 10 8 6 4 2 km
Border walk: along the Kosovar/North Macedonian border over the ridge of the Sharr Mountains to the ski resort of Brezovica, an interesting witness of Kosovo's socialist era.

 

>>>> ATTENTION: Detailled informations on how to plan your trip, safety instructions, regulations for border crossing etc. are provided by the official website www.high-scardus-trail.com <<<<

moderate
Distance 12.1 km
6:00 h
823 m
721 m
2,319 m
1,620 m
The second stage of the High Scardus Trail takes you straight to the summit ridges of the long-stretched Sharr Mountains. After a first ascent, wonderfully hikeable round ridges provide a dreamlike hiking pleasure on rarely used hiking trails through an alpine heath landscape along the Kosovar-Macedonian border, before descending to the lonely lake "Liqeni I Livadheve". A short climb and long descent brings you down to Brezovica. This outdated ski resort is not necessarily beautiful, but as the former most important ski resort in the Western Balkans, it is an extremely interesting witness of the socialist era.

 

Author’s recommendation

It is possible to take the 2,498 m high Ljuboten as a traverse - however, the descent from the summit to the main route is quite steep and a bit slippery.
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Author
High Scardus Trail 
Update: June 13, 2022
Difficulty
moderate
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
2,319 m
Lowest point
1,620 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
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Track types

Show elevation profile

Safety information

Attention: The stage is currently not well marked in some places, which in combination with difficult to see sections of the trail and poorly detailed maps can lead to serious orientation problems in some places. We therefore strongly recommend that you only hike the trail with a guide who knows the area. If you still want to hike on your own, great experience in using GPS devices or the use of map apps (incl. the possibility of offline map storage; app by Outdooractive recommended) is necessary!

Attention: For crossing the Macedonian-Kosovar border (green border) a border permit is necessary!

Start

Mountain Hut Ljuboten (1,620 m)
Coordinates:
DD
42.184694, 21.127331
DMS
42°11'04.9"N 21°07'38.4"E
UTM
34T 510514 4670290
w3w 
///sampler.haunts.testifies
Show on Map

Destination

Brezovica Ski Resort

Turn-by-turn directions

The trail towards Brezovica starts on the right, past the hut and up the slope towards Ljuboten. At the first fork in the path just above the hut, follow the path uphill towards "Ljuboten Peak" and "Livachko ezero" (in Albanian Liqeni I Livadheve). Follow the marked trail in serpentines through a heath landscape towards the peak of Ljuboten until, after about an hour, you reach a fork and take the left path towards Livachko ezero (the right path leads to the peak of Ljuboten). Traces of path over a gently rising ridge lead to the left and you suddenly reach a large basin. The trail leads through the gravel fields of this basin, slightly ascending to a wide grassy saddle on the west side of Ljuboten - you are now standing directly on the Macedonian-Kosovar border.

Here you keep to the left (west) and do not choose the right (somewhat more obvious) path, but rather the left inconspicuous path, which first leads very slightly downwards through meadows and then crosses the first ridge at a constant height. You follow the path for a few minutes until markings on the right lead away from the path through meadows (easy to miss!) You follow the markings into a meadow basin and then for the first time clearly climb back up to the border ridge (note: the upper path from the saddle also leads here, but is significantly more unpleasant to walk).

Now you hike along the ridge to the left (west) with a beautiful view, you can avoid a somewhat unpleasant exposed spot directly over the ridge and reach a fork in the path. Take the right path, which skirts the summit of Kule to the north in the grassy flank, and reach the ridge again and another fork at the saddle "Qafa e Livadheve". Follow the sign towards "Liqeni i Livedheve" and "Qendra Skitare Brezovicë" and descend along a narrow path through partly steep meadows to the lake "Liqeni i Livadheve".

This magnificent mountain lake invites you to take a rest in any case, before the path to Brezovica leads you to the north shore along the right side of the lake to its western end. Now turn left uphill, following the markings on to the right at a fork in the path until you reach a small saddle. On the other side of the saddle, follow the path slightly downwards or at the same altitude westwards through the large mountain basin, climb briefly to a ridge and continue in the same direction slightly downwards along the path until you reach a ridge with a signpost, from where you can already see the ski area and the houses of Brezovica.

A very rough alpine road begins here, which you follow down to Brezovica. The end of the stage is at the junction with the asphalt road just below the highest hotel in Brezovica (Hotel Molika, closed in summer).

Note


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Arrival by public transport not possible.

Getting there

By foot via stage 01. Alternatively only possible with very robust 4x4 off-road vehicles from Staro Selo.

Parking

Limited parking next to the hut. 

Coordinates

DD
42.184694, 21.127331
DMS
42°11'04.9"N 21°07'38.4"E
UTM
34T 510514 4670290
w3w 
///sampler.haunts.testifies
Show on Map
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Equipment

General
  • Backpack approx. 30-40 liters with hip belt
  • Rain cover for the backpack
  • Telescopic poles

Clothing

  • Trekking shoes at least category B (preferably ankle-high for the pathless passages)
  • Flipflops or similar for the accommodations
  • 2 pairs of hiking socks
  • underwear
  • hiking pants softshell or similar (wind- and water-repellent - the High Scardus Trail runs through alpine regions)
  • Hiking pants spare (also for accommodation)
  • Shorts
  • T-shirt quick drying
  • T-shirt fast drying spare (quantity depending on the length of the tour)
  • Top long first layer (e.g. Transtex-Sleeve) + replacement
  • Top long second layer (e.g. sleeve made of fleece or merino wool) + replacement
  • Softshell jacket or similar
  • Clothing for accommodation
  • rain jacket (hardshell jacket waterproof and breathable)
  • umbrella if necessary
  • Rain pants (hardshell pants waterproof and breathable)
  • Sun protection for the head (sun hat or cap)
  • Hat (can get cold even in summer!)

Hygiene/medication/personal items

  • small travel towel
  • personal hygiene items personal medicines (important medicines in addition to personal medicines are e.g. Imodium, charcoal tablets, Bepanthen and a painkiller like Ibuprofen or Parkemed)
  • Blister plaster
  • Pocket knife, small scissors
  • Sunglasses (tight-fitting with 100% UV protection and tint category 3)
  • Sunscreen (SPF at least 30, water/sweat resistant, broad spectrum protection, not older than 1 year)
  • Lip protection (SPF at least 20)
  • Outdoor first aid kitpossibly spare glasses
  • small LED headlamp
  • bivy sack (at least a very light one)
  • Handkerchiefspassport + copycredit card/cash (at many accommodations you can only pay with cash)
  • Border Crossing Permit
  • Small dictionaries

Orientation

  • Travel documents printout
  • Orientation App (e.g. Outdooractive with Pro-Account, so you can save the map sections offline)
  • if necessary additional GPS-device
  • Cell phone (smartphone for orientation app) + charger
  • Powerbank for cell phone (not all accommodations have sockets)
  • if necessary power socket adapter

Food and drinks

  • Drinking bottles (depending on temperature and personal drinking needs 1,5-3 liters; the sources are shown in the map)
  • Food for the day (the respective shopping possibilities can be seen in the map)

Questions and answers

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Rating

4.5
(2)
Sophie Grandclaude
September 14, 2022 · Community
Très beau tracé!!! Le lac est splendide! Tous les hébergements étaient fermés en août lors de notre passage..
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When did you do this route? August 15, 2022
Rüdiger Mertz 
August 22, 2022 · Community
Schöner Weg, gut zu finden, kurz vor dem ersten Pass gab es auch eine Quelle. Auch das Wasser des Sees kann man gefiltert oder mit micropur trinken. Landschaftlich sehr schön. Achtung: Brezovica ist ein WINTERSPORTORT! Ende Juli war alles zu. Es gab keinen Laden und keine Übernachtung oder ein Restaurant (nur ein paar Handwerker waren zu sehen). Alles wirkte sehr runtergekommen. Man kann aber relativ gut zelten und das Wasser des Baches filtern.
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Photos from others


Reviews
Difficulty
moderate
Distance
12.1 km
Duration
6:00 h
Ascent
823 m
Descent
721 m
Highest point
2,319 m
Lowest point
1,620 m
Linear route Multi-stage route Scenic Botanical highlights Insider tip

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