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Maliovitsa – for climbing and hiking

When Alex mentions Maliovitsa area to climbing for 2-3 days, my first thought has – “Via Ferrata… Finally”. We had to go a whole bunch with kids with cars, but 5 minutes before to get out of home Alex call me with news that will be only as and we travel by bus. The buses to Samokov on Bus Station “South” (Joliot Curie Metro Station) departure every 30 minutes. When we arrive in Samokov we see that have only two minibuses to Maliovitsa area – one very early morning and one in 16:00… Because has 11:15 we take bus to Govedartsi with the idea to hitchhiking rest 10-12 km. “Is it a good idea???” – we think walking on a road in mountain in working day… But luckily not more that 2 km. after the village youth man with small kid stop us and drive us to the hotel area of Maliovitsa. They are also going to Maliovitsa cabin for one or two days of rest, so we say “See soon”, and go up faster by them. It’s 0,50 – 1,15 hours to a rich Maliovitsa cabin. The last time I was here in 2006 on my Outward Bound instructor course and after so many years not remember a lot, but on the rock have some climbers, so has easy to find climbing routes even on wrong way. Already there, however, we realized that this part of the route is a little more difficult that we want and able to climb. After half an hour struggle on bolt four I give up… But for next morning we find where starts Via Ferrata route and to not be with zero ascents make one of the routes in the Training rocks.

On the next morning immediately after breakfast we go to Via Ferrata. We know that is 400 m long and 200 m denivelation and friends alarm as that bolts are a little bit sparse, so we think that will need almost 2 hours. We start at 9:30 from the cabin and at 11:00 rich end of ferrata. This Via Ferrata is not so difficult, a lot is walking between dwarf pine, but yes, the steel rope bolts are rare and on fall not in help. On 2/3 of route Via Farrata splits in two parts, but sign to part 2 is named – Not for everybody and traversing and climb 20-25m vertical cliff. I fell in love, but hard will find somebody to come with me to try this part of Via Ferrata – even in online guide say – it’s extremely hard. Going down is on marked long path, we even see a mountain goat…
Most of the afternoon we spend on Training rocks, a little tired, but still made 3-4 routes…

On the last day we go to Maliovitsa peak. Is well marked (red marks to Ivan Vazov hut and Seven Rila lakes 7-8 hours) path and takes 2-2,30 hours without backpack (maybe 3-3,30h with baggage). Going down is not more that 30 minutes faster. At 16:00 we arrive in the Maliovitsa hotel area and in 17:00 minibus come. After 2 hours we have been again in Sofia…

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