This guidebook offers 23 walking routes across the 120km Karavanke mountain range, a natural border between Austria and Slovenia. The one and two-day routes cater for all abilities, from low-level walks to high summits. The approaches are mainly from the forested valleys of the Slovenian side, with bases in unspoilt towns and villages.
The magnificent 120km-long Karavanke mountain range forms a natural border between Slovenia and Austria. It is one of the longest mountain ranges in Western Europe, yet it remains relatively unvisited and unknown among English-speaking hillwalkers. Visitors tend to rush to the much better known Julian Alps, leaving these gems of mountains untouched, so they are yet to experience the extent of the commercial development known by the Western Alps.
The range divides naturally into two sections: the Western Karavanke, as far as the Kouta ridge, is more or less a single unbroken ridge, while the Eastern Karavanke are split into several massifs. The typical pattern all along the range is of precipitous rocky faces to the northern, Austrian side, while to the southern, Slovene side there are steep grassy slopes and terraces.
All the walks are graded from 1 to 3, and though not an official system this will help assess each route's suitability to your own ability and taste. It should be noted however, that even the easiest grade (1) may be a long and tiring excursion, despite not being excessively steep or technical, so previous mountain experience is recommended. The highest graded routes are particularly strenuous, tackling high and exposed sections that require the aid of fixed steel cables and pegs.
Arranged in the book by peak from west to east along the range, the routes feature major highlights including Stol (at 2236m the highest in the range and one that forms a stunning backdrop to the beautiful Lake Bled), the majestic Kouta ridge and Golica - a mountain that displays a fine carpet of white daffodils in May.
detailed description of 23 walking routes, covering the entire range from west to east
insight into the history of the area
practical details on transport, accessing the routes, accommodation and available facilities