Highest peak of the Pirin Mountains 2915m high
Warning : Maybe hard to imagine from these photos, but some hikers we met along the trip turned around as they were knee deep in the snow (early October !) so bear this in mind whenever you want to walk up outside of Summer !
Vihren is the highest point of Pirin mountain, 2914 m. It is the second highest in Bulgaria (after Musala in Rila mouintain) and third highest on the Balkans. It is considered more difficult to climb because it's steeper and rockier than Musala. However, you don't need any special equipment, just a strong heart, muscle and lungs. And of course, bring warm clothes, rainjacket, plenty of food and water, and wear good hiking boots.
We climbed in August. The starting point was Vihren chalet, 16 km from Bansko. We started at 9:30 and it took us 4 hours with plenty of short rest stops, although the signs said 3 hours. We took the longer, but in my opinion, less steep, trail via 'Kazanite'. The other one, via 'Koncheto' is shorter but steeper. The path goes along for some time before it splits into 2: to the left is the Koncheto route, and to the right, the Kazanite route (there is 'Kazanite' written on one rock where the path splits). The scenery is beautiful, with low vegetation. You cross a creek in the beginning but after that there is no water so make sure to bring plenty. When you get near to the peak, there is almost no vegetation, mostly rocks. We had perfect weather, but it could get very windy. Don't forget to apply a lot of sunblock. There were quite a lot of people climbing from all over the world, so you could always ask someone for the way. But even if you can't, there is the red marking which you follow. I would not suggest climbing in the winter.
We took the other way down. It was very steep so our ankles and knees hurt a bit after 3 hours of going down.
Tevno ezero (lake). Situated in the heart of mountain at 2512m a.s.l., it is most beautiful place in Pirin. The lake is surrounded by chain of peaks - Momin dvor (2725), Kralev dvor (2680), Malka (Little) Kameniza, Kameniza (2822). (113k, 114k). Momin dvor is a junction of the main ridge and the high rocky Polezhan ridge.
This is most beautiful mountain in my country. It is southern neighbour of Rila mountain. The north part is a high ridge with north-west to south-east orientation. It begins with Pirin peak high about 2550m. Going to South, one passes several other peaks and step-by-step climbs up to 2800 m a.s.l. This is exceptionally beautiful Karst ridge of Pirin. There are passes as narrow as 1 meter on the ridge. The peaks here are Kamenitica (2720m), Bajuvi dupki (2820m), Banski Suhodol (2882m), Kutelo (2908m). Next peak is Vihren (the highest of the mountain - 2914m). It looks like a big pyramid with 400m high northern vertical wall. The peak is object of winter alpinism. Vihren is the last peak of Karst part of the mountain. The kingdom of the water and the glacier lakes begins now. Several glacier circuses follow from both sides of the ridge. And, every one hides three-four lakes. Some of them even more. Each circus has its own look - one is full with stones while another is level and ready for sun-bathes.
We saw many beautiful flowers on the way to Vihren peak. I hadn't seen such a variety of wild flowers elsewhere. I don't know much about botanics, but as far as I know there are many endemic species in Pirin mountain. You could even see the rare edelweiss. We didn't see it unfortunately.
Enjoy the flowers but please don't pick them!
The best views are on top of the mountain once above the tree level
Yet still very nice to walk through this vast forest
2nd Highest peak 2714m high
sitting here definitely beats watching TV
although not really on any route , with a lil extra effort you find a wonderful view
what a lovely sight to see the sun gradually enlighten the moutain peaks and valleys
definitely worth it to get up at 7am
The best thing about climbing mount Vihren is the fantastic views from the top. You are surrounded by mouintans, see numerous peaks and lakes. Even in August, there is some snow left on the slopes.