Hiking Chopok to Mt Ďumbier

posted in: Hiking, Slovakia | 11

One of the easy hikes we did whilst staying in the Tatra region of Poland and Slovakia was along the ridge of a mountain range in the Lower Tatra’s (located in Northern Slovakia) from Chopok to Mt Ďumbier. We decided to do this hike as Claire is fairly new to mountain hiking and I wanted to do something we could both enjoy while taking in the views and sampling the Autumn alpine fresh air. This is how we did our day hike plus a few extra things we did…..

How we got there

We were staying in Zakopane (Southern Poland) so with our hired car we drove to Jasná Nízke Tatry which is one the northern side of the mountain range. Here we got the chair-lift then cable car to the summit of Mt. Chopok (2004m above sea level).

First we had to take a chair lift…..
….then a funicular…..
…and finally a cable car. (It doesn’t take that long and is easy to do)

The Hike

This is a fairly easy hike to do. When exiting the cable car station follow signs for Ďumbier. It is not that hard. Before walking down the mountain, right next to the station is a small hill. Climb that (which is very rocky in places) and the summit of Chopok is reached. We did this in less than ten minutes to get to the top and the views to the north are pretty amazing.

Hiking the summit of Mt. Chopok
Hiking the summit of Mt. Chopok
The summit of Mt. Chopok

The summit of Mt. Chopok

The ridge is nice and flat in places and not that difficult to master. There can be lots of rocks in places but I would say 80% of the hiking trail is gravel. Whilst walking along, the views to the south are simply perfect and peaceful. We hiked this trail in late September and there was not many people hiking but I think during the summer months this area will be packed with day trippers and hikers from all over Europe. (In the winter months, the mountains around here are a very popular skiing destination).

The ridge between Chopok and Ďumbier
The ridge between Chopok and Ďumbier
The ridge between Chopok and Ďumbier
The ridge between Chopok and Ďumbier
The ridge between Chopok and Ďumbier
A view to the south from the ridge
The ridge between Chopok and Ďumbier
A view to the north from the ridge

We reached Ďumbier at the other side of the ridge and we were very happy to have a rest to check out the amazing views (to which most of them we had already seen from hiking the ridge but we just couldn’t get enough of them!) before heading back the way we came to the cable car to go back down towards Jasná Nízke. The distance of this hike is 8.8km (about 5.5 miles) and we took about three hours doing this but information signs say about four hours to allow for this hike. With all the photographing and videoing we did, I was surprised we did it in around three hours. The signs to look for on the route are the RED markers with Ďumbier written on them (and of course Chopok on the way back). Also Ďumbier is the highest peak in the Lower Tatra’s at 2043m

The trail path going towards Ďumbier
Claire taking time out to view Ďumbier
The ridge – a view from Ďumbier
The trail path going towards Ďumbier
Taking time out to admire the amazing views
The clouds came in towards the end of the hike but still makes a great photo.

Jasná Nízke

Before going back to the car and driving back towards Poland, I found a hidden secret. Well, it’s not really a secret but we like to say it is. Behind the Hotel Grand in Jasná Nízke there is a very short hiking trail which should take around twenty minutes to complete (longer if taking photos) around Vrbické pleso (lake) which is 1113m above sea level. Vrbické pleso is a glacier mountain lake and is the largest natural lake in the Lower Tatra’s. On a good day, the reflection of trees overlooking the lake is stunning and we were lucky to see this. The lake route is highly recommended before heading away from the area.

The path leading up to Vrbické pleso from Hotel Grand
Vrbické pleso
Vrbické pleso
Vrbické pleso
Vrbické pleso

TIPS:

  1. Allow around four hours for the hike which includes rest stops
  2. Have waterproof boots/shoes as it can be wet in places (especially after it has rained or if there is low cloud).
  3. Make sure you take food with you (and other equipment like first aid etc). There is a shop at the cable car station at the start of route to buy snacks if needed.
  4. A map isn’t really necessary, just follow the markers and signs. It’s a pretty straightforward route.
  5. Make sure you have waterproof clothing as well.

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11 Responses

  1. I wish I had more time to explore Slovakia outside of visiting the capital, the landscape and gorgeous hikes look amazing. I would love to go back and visit the natural parks and other monuments.

  2. You have gorgeous photos! Living in Colorado and Utah, I was taken away by the mountain views, but these mountains in Slovakia definitely rival what I’ve grown up with. The photo of the clouds coming in at the end of the hike is spectacular!
    Brooke of Passport Couture recently posted…Moms and Fair Trade

  3. What beautiful countryside. The trails look more like cobblestone roads than dirt tracks, so I imagine it would be straight forward. Having the ski lifts take you up the hill is a great way to focus on the views from the ridgeline
    Jenn and Ed Coleman recently posted…Discover the Secrets of Ruby Falls

  4. I still haven’t made it to Poland yet, and I love seeing the nature side of it. This looks like a beautiful hike and thanks for including the tip to make the detour to the lake.
    Jennifer recently posted…Fregate Island Private: Unique on Earth

  5. What a beautiful hike. I love hiking in the spring and summer, it’s a great way to see a ski hill in a different light. I’ve hiked in the hills around Poprad a few years, loved it.

  6. Poland is one of the countries in Eastern Europe that I also wanted to visit, as a keen hiker this is a very useful post for my travels. Thanks for sharing these tips.
    Michela of Rocky Travel Blog recently posted…Best Solo Driving Tips for the first time traveller in Australia

  7. This looks like the type of hike that I’d love to do, look at those beautiful views! Thanks for introducing me to a great outdoor spot in Slovakia!

  8. Wow, I had no idea there were places in Poland that looked like this! Mount Chopok looks like it was well worth the effort.
    Brianna Simmons recently posted…The Best Shoes for Travel-Flats to Keep You Stylish and Comfortable on the Go

  9. Slovakia is such a gorgeous place to hike. I made it to a few in the High Tatra Region but didn’t explore the Low Tatra area — can’t wait to go back one day and see more. Definitely a place that is easy to fall in love with!

    Lucy
    http://www.thetraveltextbook.com

  10. Mt. Chopok looks like such a fun hike! We only had a couple of days in Slovakia and it was winter, so we didn’t do any hikes, but I’d love to go back to explore more. The lake looks gorgeous, too! Would love to check out both spots sometime!
    Jenna recently posted…Views from Above: Observation Decks in Chicago

  11. Slovakia is indeed a lovely place! Looks like it’s an adventure to hike there but with all the sceneries waiting for you, it’ll be worth it!

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