Ascent of Velika Rudoka on 2019-11-02

Climber: Tom Milliard

Date:Saturday, November 2, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Velika Rudoka
    Location:Kosovo/North Macedonia
    Elevation:8727 ft / 2659 m

Ascent Trip Report

The most important feature of this walk is getting to the trailhead. As previously described by others on here, if heading from Skopje, you need to head towards the village of Gjurjeviste on a well paved road. About 2 kilometres before the village, turn right onto an unpaved road. This is passable in the standard car we were driving, all in first gear, and takes about 45 minutes. We drove up until a junction in the track, where we turned left. There are some red/white markers on the way, although these disappear for most of the hike. Eventually you come to an abandoned building, possibly connected with the stream nearby. Just after this is a fork with a steep incline to the right. This is the route, but impassable with a standard car. Park at the building. The route goes up the steep track, and soon you come to a track leading off to the right. The markers indicate to carry straight on, which we did, and after awhile signs you off the road, where the markers end, and its rather unpleasant bushwhacking! On descent we discovered the better option is to follow the track up (passing a kind of refuge), to a t junction where you turn left (around 1600m). At 1750m you finish the track at the stream. Follow either side, there are occasional tracks but mostly wet and slippery grass, up to 2150m, and the black lake. Here the walk gets interesting and with much nicer views. Skirt the lake on either side, and follow the smaller river to the dry bed of the upper lake. The summit of Rudoka is clearly visible on the left, and at 2400m you just aim for the obvious saddle. Between the lake and summit there are quite a lot of markers to follow if required. The summit push is up a grassy slope, and the top is marked by a border stone and pole (someone had stuck some British postage stamps on the marker which made me smile!). Descent by a similar route, but due to better visibility we could cut a few corners. Total ascent time about 4 hours including breaks, descent about 3 hours. A nice walk, and no one seen all day except a few shepherds and dogs.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack

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