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National Park Risnjak

National Park Risnjak


The National Park "Risnjak" is located in Gorski Kotar, the most forested area in western Croatia. The park, with a surface area of 63.5 km2, comprises the central part of the massif of Risnjak and Snježnik, and the upper reaches of the river Kupa with headwaters.

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The area of the Risnjak - massif was declared in 1953 on a proposal from major Croatian naturalist and explorer of Risnjak, Prof. Dr. Ivo Horvat to the national park. In early 1997 the NP "Risnjak" has been extended to the territory of the massif of Snjeznik and the source of the river Kupa, which the desire of Prof. Dr. Ivo Horvat, to protect and enhance this area, has been fulfilled.

National Park Risnjak The territory of the NP Risnjak belongs to Dinarics which stretches from the eastern Alps to the Sar-Pindos Mountains, and this is part of the area which connects the Alps and the Dinarides. About the massif of Risnjak and Snjeznik to large migrations of Alpine have moved to the southeast, but has maintained in these mountains a vegetation substantially different from that in the Alps.

The National Park Risnjak - Nacionalni park Risnjak is located in Gorski Kotar near Rijeka. The name part Ris called Lynx, who still lives here in the woods.



The Paths to the Veliki Risnjak


The main goal of most visitors to the park is the peak of Veliki Risnjak. Until the country cottage is located at the top, and the "Sloserov dom", named after the botanist and the first Chairman of the Croatian Mountaineers Federal, Dr. Josip Schlosser Klekovski called, perform some marked mountain walks. From Bijela Vodica there are even two of the first- "Horvatova staza", slowly increasing the forest road until the junction Podi up, continues alongside the Vucja jama, Klupice and the ruins of Stara Lugarnica, to the important crossroads for landmark 51. From there from an ever steeper expectant path leads to the mountain hut. Another path leads without climb through the Leska Valley to Klada source, and then some with wooden stairs to the intersection Markov brlog on the street about Leska. From the junction it goes to the west next to the Zelena Ponikva and through the rock arch Janjicarska vrata the intersection Medvjeda vrata, and then right, through the Mali Juzni Risnjak mountain hut. The climbers to the summit of the Risnjak of Tuhobic about Lepenica, Osoje and Gornje podolje on the Rijeka - ascend climbers transversal (RT), enter in the park from the northwest side of Suha Recina, and then come over Medvjeda vrata to the refuge.


The Paths towards the Kupa-source


The source of the river Kupa, as a hydro-geological feature and one of the pearls of the NP "Risnjak", attracts many visitors. The main entrances to the Kupa-source drove in two directions. The first comes from the village Razloge wherever you via a narrow Asphaltsraße that near Malo Selo from the street Gerovo - may teeing Crni Lug, by car. From the village Razloge the path leads steeply downhill towards Kupa-source then removed for 30 minutes. The second main entrance leads from the village Kupari, where you can come across a winding paved road by car. This road is achieved when one of the asphalt road Mali Lug - turns Zamost. From Kupari a mountain path leads which first on the Kupa-source increases, resulting in the river bed of Krasicevica downhill, and then the source itself is only 5 minutes away. On this path is followed by the ways of the Croatian and Osilnica.


Information about the National Park Risnjak





1953 National Park Risnjak was founded at the initiative of the naturalist Hovat. It is important to keep in him the impressive coincidence of two mountain ranges and a river course and to ensure the natural development free from obstructions and modifications. At that time, the park area was just 32 square kilometers, the passage of time but it has been doubled. Only 10 kilometers away from the Adriatic coast at an altitude of up to 1525 meters is today one of the most popular recreation areas of Croatia. Through small settlements directly at the park longer stays are here the rule rather than the exception and who takes a walk in the long snowy winters between the peaks of the Dinarides would hardly surprised here the idyllic, untouched by human hands home of the legendary Yeti found to have.



Flora And Fauna





Between June and July of Risnjak blossomed in all its colorful blooms, especially the upper zone, inviting to the mountain huts to enjoy sporting outright with new color and Fomvariationen, fragrances and designs. Here you can still find edelweiss (please do not pick!), Orchid, Clematis alpina and tiger lilies. The Alpenrose, gentian, violet and rockrose are found here as well as hundreds of other species, all of which even did not fit in a single bouquet itself. As early as 1953 were 872 different plants documented in the grounds of the park so that one even in days spent always a new natural beauty is striking.

Nationalpark Risnjak 6Above the meadows fighting the mountain pine from the wind and rock, below the glades are the dense forests that motivated you to declare this area a nature reserve: In just 30 square kilometers created the influences of the Adriatic coast weather, continental climate, the Dinarides and the Alps a unique forest landscape. In 55% of the total park area, the beech and fir forest extends up to 1200 meters. In the shadow under the crowns grow plants such as Christmas rose and reed grass, moreover, sycamore, elm and spruce are represented sporadically. The higher one ascends the summit in the forest, the smaller the trees and the more crooked the tribes.

This is due to the weather: Since regular thick layers of snow are piled here in winter, the young shoots grow in the dark until straightforward, so the 90-degree angle to the ground, but then turn to the light and the sun. But the growth turns out because of the inhospitable soil and severe winds far more difficult than in the valley - and so the trees stay so small that the book as a shrub, a so-called "krummholz" appears. In protected Leskatal contrast, fir shoot at up to 45 meters up, a diameter of not infrequently have a meter and would donate more than 1000 cubic meters of wood - is likely to beat them since.

And here is the tendency deterrent geography of Risnjak only of advantage, because due to the inaccessible location, there are still some areas inside the reserve that were never cleared or otherwise used intensively for agriculture. The "forests" of Croatia, however, are only scientists accessible to allow her beautiful natural state is not jeopardized by discarded chewing gum papers, blumenpflückende romantics or trampling tourists - at least not until all the secrets of the forest are researched and then these reserves are revealed for the eyes of the public .




Depending on the plant occurrence also varies the type and number of people living in the park animals. To nest as only 72 of the 97 bird species on the terrain of the Risnjak, but already represents a significant achievement in environmental protection - elsewhere can be much less talk of biodiversity. In Subalpine Buchenwald are woodpeckers, chickadees and Redstart. In the regions including for example, is the rare hazel grouse native, about the crooked timber inventory also live the annular throttle, the Dunnock or about the black redstart.
Nationalpark Risnjak 14And live near the summit in the rocky plains and nest eight different prey types. In the Kupa also live mullet, trout and minnows, the cold water temperatures just feel comfortable in the 5-6 degrees, and out of sheer insolence often go legitimized by the park administration anglers in the networks. The mammals are represented as extensive in the park: deer, chamois and small game inhabit the slopes and enjoy the hikers already by their mere presence. Rare to discover are attendance predators. Around the Risnjak located lynx, wolf and brown bear have settled, and one or the other boar roams the mountains. Since the park has a fairly small area, the animal population of the park is also an example of the fauna of his surroundings. Since there is no built boundaries between Park and surrounding areas, it attracts a lot of animals foraging in the unprotected valleys where they are fair game. Therefore, the park administration has set up regular feedings not to domesticate the wild but too long hikes to make unnecessary and thus to protect the stock.




A few kilometers away, parallel to the coast, the mountain range Dinarides runs through the Croatian hinterland. Some of it makes from the Gorski Kotar, whose highest peak is again the mountain Risnjak. The 1505 m with slightly lower and 3 km away Summit Snjeznik is also one of this terrain as the valuable high forests between them, the large farmland and idyllic clearings on the slopes of the two mountains and its surrounding peaks.

However, only an area of just 32 square kilometers has been a national park rings awarded to the mountain Risnjak on scientific criteria, which was, however, extended in 1997 after tourist and economic considerations on the double degree, so that the mountain range Snježnik and the source of the river Kupa also are protected. The entire park is located about 300 meters above sea level, the landscape is ideal for hiking and so meet here leisure and environmental protection successive desirably harmony.

The summit of the reserve consist of Jurassic limestone, so as to form the typical karst formations with craggy rocks and trough-like valleys. The carbon-containing soil takes rainfall on quickly and a varied vegetation can be seen from him. Although this is always moist soil passes on its surface a single drop in a large stream, but can within the earth, the water in the Kupa and into the Black Sea incorporated.
Nationalpark Risnjak Landschaft

The Kupa itself that determines not only the border of the National Park Risnjak but also that of the State of Croatia, rises to 313 meters above sea level a 80 m deep, underground source that initially forms a 50 m wide lake and then over 5 km and inside with first rapids National park passes. The klime in the National Park of course strongly depends on the height from, on the one measures, but generally speaking rainfall are here quite frequently and violently, no winter passes without the park lies there sweetened in snow.

At the top there are in July average of 12.6 degrees, in January 3.3, so that up to 4 meters high snowpack takes almost half a year here to melt.

But with a humidity means of always over 80% already has the Risnjak almost tropical values. This rare combination leads to the unique flora and fauna which must be protected by means of the national park.




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How arrive


From Zagreb follow the old road or the direction Rijeka motorway, but turn early from Delnice. The place has its own station, so that traveling by train is possible. From here it is about 12 kilometers to Crni lug, a picturesque town, which marks the entrance to the park and in the management of Risnjak is situated.

The staff is available during the opening times for personal recommendations and answer questions, guided tours can be booked here and all sorts of information are sighted.

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From here you can on several trails the national park and especially explore the Leska Valley on your own. Who but comfortable like traveling by car on the road between Zagreb and Rijeka to the exit Gornje Jelenje and follows the forest road towards Vilje about seven kilometers.

Right a poorly-developed Stichweg leads to a parking area from which you reach the top in a short walk. Those arriving from the north reaches the Park easiest on the road between Gerovo and Lazac, from the West controlling first the village Platak and then continues its journey on foot to the south flank of Snjeznik along an old Roman path or take the trolley again direction Gornje Jelenje continued.




Locally Bijela Vodica the nature trail Leska starts. about 4 km explain twelve panels and extensive information subalpine forest, the most important rock phenomena and raise awareness of the endangered wildlife of the region. Following this, the walk can be extended to a real hike: Up to the summit you need a good half day if you enjoy the view of the mountain shoulder Schlosserov and perhaps would like to stop off at the local lodge, the longer. For the top of the mountain you should but - in spite of well-marked and regularly serviced ways - put absolutely professional hiking shoes and sufficient not forget drinks and sunscreen!

Although you should not get a Lynx to face on your trips: These shy and rare animals are represented here abundantly - not least in the name of the park: "crack" means in Croatian "Lynx" and the mountain Risnjak was probably named after these creatures. But precisely because they were so numerous that hunting was easy on them, was so spotted and shot mid-19th century, the last of the original lynx population. But today, there are so many of these again Wildcats here is not to owe about an artificial settlement but is independent from Slovenia immigrated animals.



  • A walk on the nature trail "Leska" (4,2 km). The trail begins at the administration building in Crni Lug and takes about 1 hour 45 minutes.
  • A hike to the Kupa-source. The ways to Kupa-source can be found on the official website of the National Park.
  • Mountaineering and Trekking
  • Routes towards Veliki Risnjak and Snjeznik visit the official homepage of the National Park.
  • mountain bike
  • ski
  • Sport fishing is possible from early April to the end of October to pay an additional fee of 150.00 kuna.



The Risnjak Mountain Trek - A competition in which a specified distance must be overcome with checkpoints. Equipment and meals are provided. basic knowledge of trekking in nature are necessary for participation in the race. Every year the route is changed. The competition takes place in the summer.
Eko-days - These days local organic produce will be presented.