This Saturday we chose to hike Vitosha again, the western Stony Ridge part. Hubby felt like riding the lift and so we opened the map and composed a circular route - from Dragalevtzi by the lift to the second station and from there to the Chimneys - three andesite rock formations, the Eagles' Nest gully, down the Stony Ridge to the Kikish Peak and back along the popular mid-mountain alley to the lift station. This proved to be one of the best routes we've hiked so far - the alpine part of the mountain is really gorgeous in springtime. The Stony Ridge (Kamen Del), as the name implies, is abundant with moraines, covered with wild geranium. I don't think I've ever seen so much wild geranium in bloom.
The first of the Chimneys - a popular place for rock climbing. The place is avalanche hazardous and closed for hiking in winter.
The path crosses the Dragalevska river
The weather was excellent for hiking, rock climbing and paragliding -
warm, but not hot, with a light breeze.
The path gradually climbs up to the ridge of the mountain and on top of the first chimney:
The first chimney is behind us:
The path continues meandering by the second and to the third chimneys:
The three chimneys in a row:
On top of the third chimney:
Here the path splits. We took the path to Kikish peak down the slopes of Stony Ridge (Kamen del)
Eagles' Nest Rock. We did actually see two birds of prey, probably falcons or kestrels.
The path crosses one of the tributaries to Dragalevska river and runs through birch, aspen and spruce groves, crossing moraines and opening a breathtaking view to the vast Sofia plateau:
Our picnic area - with a panoramic view to the city
and a wild flowers garden. We sat on these rocks and drank our hot tea here:
Stony Ridge (Kamen del) - these vast moraines are really amazing, it's a lunar landscape:
And back along the mid-mountain alley through the Dragalevska river,
and on the lift to Dragalevtzi: