Marko Posavec Photography

A Hot Summer Day on Kolovrat Rocks

This July it’s somewhat difficult to pick a rain-free day for a hike in Gorski kotar region of Croatia, but this Saturday proved to be just that. A bit on the opposite side, actually, as the Sun and high air humidity made every physical effort harder than usual. Our destination were the Kolovrat Rocks (Kolovratske stijene in Croatian), a kilometer-long ridge on Velika Kapela mountain range, where it slopes down towards the Adriatic Sea. Kolovrat is an ancient Slavic pagan symbol, related to swastika and god Svarog, representing the Sun and eternal life; somewhat controversial in modern times. But it could also simply refer to the wheel and axle – the latter is probably correct in this case.

Kolovrat Rocks are not as spectacular as White and Samar Rocks nearby. Their ridge spans only about a kilometer with two distinct peaks, 1.099 and 1.090 meters above sea level. The trail to the lower one is well marked, while the other requires some climbing skills. We started out at Mountain hut Stalak and from there it’s a 2,5 hour easy walk through the forest. It took us longer than that because of a large group and summer heat, but it’s generally not difficult.

As we were walking through the forest, butterflies were feeding on these large yellow flowers.

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There were other insects too, crowding on sticky burdock flowers.

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A longhorn beetle.

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The final ascent is short but steep; writing on the tree says endure, 5 mins left.

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Then, after a brief rock-hopping, we were on top, 1.090 meters high.

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This peak is actually a 15-meter rock protruding from the forest.

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Parts of descent were overgrown with vegetation. It’s been a rainy year so flora is abundant.

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A tiny grasshopper.

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And finally, after a second ascent of the day (which wouldn’t be a problem if it weren’t for the heat), the Adriatic Sea appeared before us and we climbed down for a swim in Novi Vinodolski before returning to Koprivnica.

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