Kasprowy Wierch is probably one of the most famous destinations in Tatra National Park. There are many ways leading to the top – few hiking trails and a cable rail, taking you both directions, if you are not into hiking. Hiking Kasprowy Wierch is an incredible experience due to magnificent mountain views and with a little bit of knowledge is doable not only by highly experienced hikers.
How to get to Kasprowy Wierch?
Getting to the bottom of Kasprowy Wierch is easy and also few ways are possible. You need to get to Kuznice – this is a start of the jurney to Kasprowy. If you’re going by your car, there are few things you need to aware. The last 3 km leading to Kuznice station is considered to be private. That means you can’t be sure if you’re going to be able to reach the final parking with the cable rail – with exception to a high season – Christmas week, etc. when the whole Zakopane is filling up with extreme crowds – you will definitely not be allowed to drive through. If going by mini bus – take the one to Kuznice from Zakopane Main Bus/Train Station to Kuznice, the bus will drop you near the parking place and you’ll need to walk 50 metres to the cable rail. It is also the longest ski slope in this area but a lot of people take a ride just to sit at the top and admire views while having their lunch or hot tea. The journey by cable car takes approximately 20 minutes, while hiking Kasprowy Wierch is pretty tough and takes at least 3 hours. It is possible to purchase tickets for a cable car online.
Tatra Mountains are also very popular among hikers. That means during good weather, weekends and summer you will hardly ever get a chance to enjoy them on your own. Trails to the most famous peaks will be crowded.
There’s plenty of hiking trails in Tatra National Park, it may lead you to beautiful lakes, valleys and mountain views! This requires a separate post, as there are many hiking and climbing trails and you need more information before you go there. Polish mountains are not easy and you need to check a lot of things before starting your trails. The views in Tatra Mountains are absolutely stanning and for those who love mountains it will be a mystic adventure. Tatra Mountains are rocky and dark but in spring the slopes are covered with magnificent flowers and green fields.
Hiking adventure to Kasprowy Wierch.
If you are going to choose hiking adventure to the top of Kasprowy there are many trails leading to the top. The shortest is the green trail through Myslenickie Turnie and Dolina Goryczkowa /I know Polish words can be extremely difficult to read ;)/. This trail leads along the cable rail and hiking takes 3h one way. If you don’t want to come down the same way, which i hate doing, you can do a loop starting in Kuznice /blue trail/ – Murowaniec /yellow trail from Murowaniec/ to Dolina Gasienicowa – this is an amazing place with a tourist shelter and stunning mountain views/. The yellow trail leads straight to the top of Kasprowy Wierch.
But this trail wouldn’t be enough for me and the truth is that only from Kasprowy Wierch the real panoramic trail starts. Get to Kasprowy Wierch /I tried both above trails/ and from Kasprowy take a west direction toward Przelecz pod Kopa Kondracka along the mountain ridge and further through Kopa Kondracka, Krzesanica and Ciemniak 2096 metres. This rocky ridge is called Czerwone Wierchy /the Red Peaks/ and is one of the most magnificent area in Tatra Mountains. The trail is pretty well maintained and does not require any climbing skills. All the way it is a hiking trail. From Ciemniak you should take a red trail to Kiry /the shortest and pretty pleasant leading through the forest/. This whole trail took me about 8 hours.
If you’re asking yourself is this trail for you, I’d say you need to have a good fitness level to do this loop. This loop does not require technical skills but it will be demanding and rocky. There are two things you just have to do before you go:
- getting a free map of Tatra Mountains in Tourist Information Office
- pay an entry fee to Tatra National Park – if you want to avoid queues at the entrance buy it online – I recommend 7 day pass for 7 euro.
How to get to Zakopane?
There are many ways to get to Zakopane from Cracow, it is an easy and pretty short – 2 hour trip.
- The train ride is 2.15h and it’s a very comfortable train, highly recommend.
- Bus would be the same 2h drive, there’s plenty of companies to choose from. Buses and trains leave from Cracow Glowny/Main station.
- Car – depends on a season – 1-2h. Just bare in mind there’s winter in Poland with snowfalls 😉 A lot of people do not realize that and it is a completely different drive than during summer.
- Organized tour from Zakopane – although I would recommend staying at least 3 days in Zakopane, exploring Tatra National Park.
Bucket list for hiking Karptowy Wierch!
There is nothing more important than good hiking shoes!! Gosh what a nightmare was that for me to find the right shoes! Can’t tell you how hard was it and how many times I suffered from bad shoes /still good brands but just not for me/! So, if I may help, these are the things to consider and take with you if you are hiking Kasprowy Wierch, or any other mountain trail. If you are well prepared you are safe, remember it is always better to have slightly more things just in case you need to use it.
BEFORE YOU GO HIKING:
- You should always check a weather forecast for Tatra Mountains before leaving for a hike
- Never leave without an insurance! Rescue team is busy every day in Tatra Mountains!!
- Always check if there is an avalanche alert! Avalanches are huge danger in Tatra Mountains
- Note camping is now allowed in Tatra National Park
- Dogs are not allowed in National Park.
- check alert for bears – I’m not joking 😉 Do not leave your food to encourage wild animals. If you see a bear do NOT panic, slowly move the oposite direction, bear will not attack you for no reason.
Bucket list for hiking Kasprowy Wierch:
- comfortable hiking shoes
- Be prepared for all kinds of weather – just like in all mountains the weather may change rapidly. Always carry an extra jumper and rainproof coat
- bring crampons in winter
- bring helmet, ropes if you plan to use trails with security chains – do not underestimate Tatra Mountains!
- plenty of water – that depends on a season, if the shelters are opened you can always get a hot drink and food there
- sandwitches/lunch and snacks – dark chocolate, protein bars, nuts
- paper hiking map or dowload one online
- charged phone/power bank