Triglav is not just a mountain,
Triglav is kingdom,
wrote Julius Kugy, famous explorer of Julian Alps, in his book Aus
dem Leben eines Bergsteiger (From the Life of the Mountaineer), after the
WWI. He couldnt be more right. Silhouette of Slovenian sacred mountain and
nations highest peak proudly stands on national flag as national coat of arms.
Triglav does not only have an appeal on its people, it is truly an
international giant as people from all over the world pilgrimage to its
kingdom. Germans also address it as König Triglav. It is certainly one
of the most desired and climbed mountains of whole Alps! First president of
Slovenia, Milan Kucan, said that it is obligation of every Slovenian to
climb Triglav once at least.
The facts. Triglav (2864m) is highest peak of Julian Alps
and Slovenia. He is the true ruler of closer and wider surroundings. Nothing
challenges it, as it is considerably higher than other high Julian Alps peaks.
Closest higher peak is Reißeck in Austria, some 90km away. From anywhere you
look it dominates, there is no doubt who is No1. Superlatives used to describe
it are certainly justified. Beauty of this region is unique and that was the
reason to declare whole Julian Alps to be huge Triglav National Park.
Triglav and its Stena
An aerial photo of Triglav above the Vrata
valley. On the right is Stenar. June, 1980.
Triglav rises very high above its
foothills. From all sides it is surrounded with deep valleys. It is like they
are supporting high pedestal on which The King sits. And that pedestal is
something like high lying plateau on which the main body of peak stands. On the
N is Vrata valley, probably the most beautiful in Slovenia. Above
it Triglav rises almost 2km and shows its most powerful side, the magnificent Stena
or The Face. It is over 1km high and 3km wide (more below). On the other side
of the valley, towards north, is Skrlatica (2740m) and its group.
Towards NW the edge of the Face gradually descends till Luknja pass
(1758m), which connects Triglav with Prisojnik – Razor group.
On the W, slopes of Triglav are steep and high, they descent 2km into
the Zadnjica valley, this is subsidiary to Trenta valley. On the SW
first neighbour of Triglav is Kanjavec (2568m) from which it is
separated by Dolic pass (2164m). On the S is, around 1000m lower,
Velska Dolina valley and Velo Polje field. These slopes, although
high and quite wild, are much more subdued when comparing to western and
northern ones. On the SE is Konjsko Sedlo pass (2020m), over
which Triglav is connected with Tosc (2275m) and its group. On the E
is long and deep Krma valley, while on the NE is Kot
valley. Bottoms of both valleys are 2km lower than Triglav. Between them is
wild ridge and group of peaks with impressive sides above both valleys. Highest
of them is Rjavina (2532m). At the NE foothills of summit pyramid is Zeleni
Sneg. It used to be glacier, the only one in Julian Alps. Sadly, global
warming reduced it to large snowfield.
Name. The origin of Triglav name is still not completely clear. People
used to be believe that it is home of Gods. Triglav means three heads (tri
glave). Although mountain is compact, from south it shows 3 heads. On the left
is Rjavec (2568m), in the middle is main summit, Triglav (2864m) and on the
right is Mali Triglav (2725m, small Triglav), which is actually just a
shoulder, not a real peak, like what is Monte Bianco di Courmayer to Mont
History. First on the summit where: Luka Korosec,
Matija Kos, Stefan Rozic and Lovrenc Willomitzer. It happened on August
25th 1778. They climbed from Bohinj lake, over Velo Polje (where today is
Vodnikov Dom hut), then to Ledine (where today is Planika hut) and further to
Mali Triglav. Behind it, then notorious, ridge awaited them. They had to ride it
because it is so narrow and on both sides is few hundred meters of sheer drop.
Triglav was one of first important alpine peaks that were climbed. It was great
feat for that time. First ascent from Krma valley happened in 1818.
Today Triglav is by far mostly climbed high peak in
Slovenia and wider. Last 108 years, on the summit proudly stands Aljazev
Stolp (more in objects section). Just below the summit is Stanicevo
Zavetisce refuge, carved in stone. Four secured routes lead to Triglav.
Some say that Triglav was humiliated with all that steel on the mountain. It
became easy for anyone in better shape to climb Triglav, so today crowds can
sometimes be unbearable and you have to wait on the ropes for long lines of
people to pass as so many want to climb this magical mountain. Triglav regains
respect in winter when security pegs and steel ropes are covered with snow.
Then it is reserved only for experienced mountaineers and climbers. There are
many huts around Triglav. In summer they are often overcrowded.
Reaching Kriski podi plateau from
Vrata valley. Triglav summit behind. August, 1986.
On the eastern shore of Bohinj
Lake, one of the jewels of Julian Alps and heart of the Bohinj group.
the 7 Triglav Lakes valley
In Slovenia 3 degrees of technical difficulty
are used to describe the marked path (trail):
1) Lahka (easy), normal marked path, without fixed steel ropes and pegs
2) Zahtevna (demanding), moderately secured marked path
3) Zelo zahtevna (very demanding), Feratta trail with lot of iron
Triglav approaches have various degrees of difficulty; technically most
demanding are those from Vrata and Zadnjica valleys while other approaches are
mostly not secured (easy). Last summit climb is feratta from any of 3
directions. But have in mind that this is purely technical scale of evaluation.
For those experienced on secured trails very demanding path can be easier and
more fun than long southern approaches with just easy degree of difficulty
but which is physically as same or even more demanding. Bottom line is,
shortest Triglav approaches are the steepest ones with most iron while those
without iron, from south, are also hard because of the length and altitude
Kredarica hut Triglav: very demanding / 400m alt.gain, 40m alt.loss
Pot Cez Prag:
Kredarica hut Triglav: very demanding / 400m alt.gain, 40m alt.loss
Via Luknja pass:
Via Dolic hut:
via Planika hut:
Rudno Polje Studorski Preval pass Vodnikov hut: easy
from Vodnikov via Planika:
from Vodnikov via Kredarica:
Savica hut Crno Jezero lake 7 Triglav Lakes hut:
direct route from Dolic:
from Dolic via Planika:
Planika hut Triglav: very demanding / 470m alt.gain / 1:30h
Steep entrance into ferrata trail
that leads from Kredarica (2515m) towards Triglav, June 2006
On the ferrata trail, June 2006
On the steep and narrow ridge of Triglav,
some 10 mins below the summit. Behind is Mali Triglav and Kredarica
hut on the plateau left of it.
On the narrow ridge between Triglav
(behind the back) and Mali Triglav (looking at). Deep below are the walls
above Krma valley.
Triglav and its west face photographed
from route from Koca na Dolic (hut).
On a route to the Triglav’s summit. September
On the ridge…20 minutes from
There are numerous ways to climb
Triglav. If you wonder which are the best combinations, this chapter can help
~7 Triglav Lakes route~
1) If you cant start early from Bohinj Lake (Savica hut), reach 7
Triglav Lakes or Prehodavci huts during the day and sleep over. Next day
continue towards Triglav. After reaching the summit, sleep over either at
Kredarica or Planika huts. On the third day descent via Bohinj or Vrata valley
routes. Get back to car at Savica hut by buses.
2) If you start at dawn, you can go all the way to Kredarica or Planika
huts or even to Triglav (either directly from Dolic or leave backpack first at
Kredarica or Planika). This is tough undertaking, 11h long, whole day route.
After reaching the summit, sleep over either at Kredarica or Planika huts. On
the second day climb Triglav first (if you havent on previous day) and descent
via Bohinj or Vrata valley routes. Get back to car at Savica hut by buses.
~Vrata Valley routes~
1) Sleep over at Aljazev Dom hut and start at dawn towards Kredarica hut
via Tomiskov or Cez Prag trails. Leave unnecessary things at Kredarica hut and
head for summit in the afternoon and return to sleep over. Also you can climb
Triglav with backpack and descent to Planika for the night. On the second day
climb Triglav (if you didn’t during previous day) and continue towards 7
Triglav lakes valley. Sleep over in 7 Triglav Lakes hut. On the third day
descent to Bohinj. This is probably the most beautiful way to climb Triglav
and get to know most beautiful parts of its kingdom. Of course, on the
second day you can return to Vrata valley or descent via Bohinj route.
2) If you cant start early from Aljazev dom hut, climb to Kredarica
during the day and sleep over. On the second day head for the summit without
backpack, if you are returning to Vrata valley. If you wish to continue towards
7 Triglav Lakes climb with backpack. Descent directly from the summit towards 7
Triglav lakes valley, via either Planika hut or Dolic hut. Sleep over in 7
Triglav Lakes or Prehodavci huts. On the third day descent to Bohinj.
3) Start at dawn from Aljazev Dom hut and climb Triglav via Bambergov
Pot trail. From the summit descent to Kredarica or Planika huts and sleep over.
On the second day descent to back to Vrata via Cez Prag or Tominskov Pot trail.
This way you close beautiful circle around Triglav and its Face. Of course, you
can also continue towards 7 Triglav Lakes or Bohinj, like in previous two
If you are stationed at Bohinj and would not like to descent to Vrata valley
because it is far from your car here is beautiful circle, which begins and ends
1) Start at dawn via Bohinj routes and reach Kredarica or Planika hut.
Sleep over. On the second day climb the summit and continue towards 7 Triglav
Lakes hut. You can sleep over there or if you are fast descent all the way to
Bohinj. Use bus from Savica hut to get back to your car at Stara Fuzina or
2) Start at dawn via 7 Triglav Lakes route and continue all the way to
Kredarica or Planika huts. On the second day leave backpacks in the hut, climb
Triglav and return. Continue towards Bohinj via Bohinj routes. Take a bus to
Savica hut if car is waiting there.
Summer months on Triglav are July and August.
Thousands upon thousands, from all directions, pilgrimage towards Triglav in
this period. If you dont like crowds better avoid summer, if it can be called
that way, because temperatures around Triglav dont exceed 10°C too often. That
happens on hot days when temps in the Slovenian plains and on the coast reach
30°C. No equipment is needed in summer, except helmet and ropes for climbing
(ferrata) trails (not necessary, depends on personal taste). Even in this
period you will see and walk over quite a lot of remaining snow, depending of
the year. Always have warm clothes with you, snow is possible on Triglav even
in mid summer.
Autumn is perhaps best time to visit if you dont like crowds. In
September and October days are still quite long and Sun is not beating hard,
views are great. At the beginning of October forested areas are beautifully colored,
especially 7 Triglav Lakes valley, where there are lot of larch trees which put
on its golden display.
the huts are preparing several meals each day and have drinks.
Koca pri Savici (653m) (Hut near Savica) stands in the beech forest, at
the bottom of glacial cirque Komarca and its cliffs. This is the
beginning of Bohinj lake valley. It is accessible by car from Bled, via
Bohinj (36km). Parking is not free. Opening year was 1951 after the renovation
of previous Yugoslav border watch-house. Vicinity of Savica waterfall
made it very popular tourist hut so in 1990 it was enlarged. Hut is open from
beginning of June till end of September. It has electricity, hot water
and 32 beds.
Kovinarska Koca v Krmi (870m) (Kovinarska Hut in Krma) stands on the
edge of Zasipska Planina meadows in Krma valley. Hut was opened
in 1948 in renewed shepherds house. In 1959 new hut was opened. In 1983
freshly renewed hut was reopened. It has 27 beds, water, electricity etc. From
the hut is nice view on the peaks surrounding Krma valley, which are rising
wildly above it. Hut is open from beginning of June till the end of September.
Planinska Koca na Uskovnici (1154m) (Mountain Hut on Uskovnica) stands
in the lower part of Uskovnica, large meadows area above the Voje
valley, on the way from Bohinj towards Triglav. Hut was erected and opened
in 1955. In 1965 it was enlarged. In 1981 it was renamed to Hut of
Jesenisko-Bohinjskega Odreda on Uskovnica, in memory of brigade who fought in
WW II on this area. Hut has 46 beds, hot water, electricity etc. View from the
hut is nice towards lower Bohinj range of Julian Alps. Hut is open from beginning
of June till mid October.
Planinska Koca Bohinjskih Prvoborcev na Vojah (690m) (Mountain Hut of
Bohinjskih Prvoborcev in Voje) or simply Koca v Vojah stands in the glacial Voje
valley, by the Mostnica river. Huge field and meadows begin here,
which are some 3km long. Hut was opened in 1982 and was named after partisan
fighters from WW II from Bohinj region. It has 40 beds, cold water and power
generator. It is open from beginning of June till the end of September and
during holidays. View from the hut is limited by steep forested slopes on the
east and west. On the north is mighty Tosc (2275m).