Sunday, August 22, 2021

Strashnoto Ezero 2021

Several times a year we make "grand hikes" - climbing difficult high peaks or traversing long routes that take 7-8 hours. The round route from the Central Mountain School to Yonchevo lake, then the Scary lake, hut Malyovitza and back to the Central Mountain School is only 15 km, but along a very technical terrain, with steep climbing, steep descending and glorious views, which usually takes us about 7 hours - quite a strenuous excersise.

We've been to Strashnoto ezero (Scary lake) in Rila twice in October, yesterday was our first time in August and it was definitely the most cold we've felt lately - mostly because we underestimated the weather forecast. It's been so so hot this summer, that a sunny day with some clouds and potential light rain didn't seem that bad. But when we arrived at the Central Mountain School, the clouds had gathered densely in the sky above the area and we barely saw the sun that day. 

:The first part to Yonchevo lake is fairly easy, with a few steep climbs, lots of blueberries and some raspberries

:Yonchevo lake. Here we had a short rest, taking in the views
:And up we went along the climbing trail to Strashnoto ezero. Here, above Yonchevo lake, we came upon a few raspberry bushes, heavy with the most delicious and ripe raspberries we've ever eaten. We gorged :)
Hike info:

Destination: Strashnoto ezero round route
Mountain: Rila
Total length: 15 km
Elevation gain: 750 m
Total duration (plus picnic and rests): 7 hours
Average difficulty: 7.5 / 10

:The plateau after the steep climb is one of my most favourite places along the trail. We could already see the crown of peaks of the Popovokapski ridge

:The most technical part of the trail, requiring climbing up tilted stone plates. In wet weather it can get very tricky, luckily it hadn't started drizzling yet and we climbed it up in no time

:And here we are - the shelter of Strashnoto ezero in already in sight

:An interesting bird hopped on the stones of the smaller lake

:Strashnoto ezero (the Scary lake)

Me-made items, worn on this hike:

Husband: boxers

:Here we had a longer rest and a snack. The temperatures dropped and my thin windshield jacket proved very insufficient to keep me warm. I wished I had packed my fleece jacket as well.

:Down the path to Malyovitza hut by the many Prekorechki lakes

:The Needles. We detoured a bit from the path climbing up this hill to check out the area under the Needles. I was sure there must be something - a lake, a river there, but no - it's a vast stony desert, kind of amazing in its austerity and bareness

:Soon after we past the Needles it began to drizzle and I put the camera away in the backpack. The steep path became slippery and the adventure went up a notch, especially when we decided to take a shortcut right downhill and across the Malyovitza river along slippery stones and fallen branches

:Peak Malyovitza in the distance


  1. What great exercise you get on these challenging hikes.

    1. Thank you, the feeling at the end of the hike is true exhilaration and satisfaction!