Chiprovtsi Monastery (Bulgarian: Чипровски манастир, Chiprovski manastir) is a Bulgarian Orthodox monastery 5 kilometres northeast of the town of Chiprovtsi in Montana Province in northwestern Bulgaria. It belongs to the diocese of Vidin and lies in the valley of the Ogosta river.
Distance: 45,2km, Cumulative elevation + 1146 m, -1169m ; Level: difficult
The track begins from the ancient fortress Kaleto. From the small obelisque monument right after the fortress turn right through the pine forest. Mind the very steep downhill with ditches. Turn sharply right downhill and then sharply left on the even road. The trail cuts generally the main ridge, there are short ups and downs, stone formations popping up at every corner. The longer route will take you to the Zbegove stone formation with picnic place, where you should take a short rest enjoying the view. Anyway, you’ll have about 6km asphalt road from Granitsak to Salash. In near future Salash will be linked with Novo Korito in Serbia and people will easily cross the border. From the center of Salash cross the mountain to reach Krachimir, quickly moving to Prauzhda on the asphalt for the final MTB part of the trail to Belogradchik.
Distance: 18,7km, Cumulative elevation + 643 m, -663m ; Level: medium
The track begins from the ancient fortress Kaleto. From the small obelisque monument turn right through the pine forest. Within a couple of hundreds of meters the road makes short but very steep downhill with ditches. Then at the big crossroad turn left on the road that goes flat. Then follow a deviation on the left next to some small villas and beautiful rocks. Short downhill with moving little stones. At the T junction at the bottom turn right and follow the trail till you get to the field. Turn right. Magnificent views towards the peculiar Triassic rocks right-hand side. Before going down to the river bed, turn right once again facing the ROCKS. This will be a real immersion into this different world. On the way you will pass along the small house of a real hermit. Then go up across the pine forest. At the very top of the ascent turn left back down and down on the ancient road. After you pass a few abandoned houses on the left and then cross the river, mind the turn on the left. Take it uphill, follow back the flat field section and then go down to Izvos village. Hit the tarmac very carefully when crossing. Go up to Belogradchik. After the bus station, on the right curve just before the bridge, take left off-road. The road winds amongst the imposing rock figures, mind the small rocky downhill section (a bit technical). Keep pedaling up to the center of Belogradchik.
Distance: 16,4km, Cumulative elevation + 180 m, -391m ; Level: medium
Departure from the center of Belogradchik. The road goes a little up and enters an undulating section. Mind the first important deviation on the right where the blue splits with the red. Go down across the forest. Then it comes the second important crossroad in the forest. For Lepenitsa cave and Izvos turn on the right. Pass through the acacia forest and then go down till you get to a perpendicular road.
To Lepenitsa cave (amazing natural miracle) turn right and then again sharply right uphill till you get just below the beautiful rock formations. From there follow the path that cuts the right-hand side of the rock (ups and downs) till you get to Lepenitsa cave. It’s worth even if some pushing is needed. The way back is the same.
To Izvos turn left, then right and then left again. You reach Izvos village on almost flat road with a little descent and in the village you can taste the magnificent spring water coming out of the Old Oak.
Distance: 16,4km, Cumulative elevation + 395 m, -633m; Level: medium
Departure from the center of Belogradchik. The road goes a little up and enters an undulating section. Mind the first important deviation on the right where the blue splits with the red. Go down across the forest. Then comes the second important crossroad in the forest. For Borovitsa – take left. Follow the river bed, then the wires. Cross a few small rivers. Ondulating section with a few river crossings. Fantastic view towards Borov Kamak rocks and downhill to Borovitsa village.
When you hit the tarmac of the village turn left and keep for about a 1,2km almost at the opposite end. Then turn left upwards. Ondulating terrain that passes below the beautiful rocks.
At one section the path goes, for very shortly, steep down and then steep up. Get off the bike. Then you pass across vineyards, little uphill, downhill trough a conifer forest, then acacias, open space, then sharp left turn into an oak forest. Follow the path (it is flat, then a little hilly and at the end it’s a tunnel forest downhill) which will lead to the tarmac road in Falkovets. “Madona Inn” hotel is on the left.
Distance: 22 km, Cumulative elevation + 352 m, -656 m ; Level: medium
The track begins from the ancient fortress Kaleto. From the small obelisque turn right through the pine forest. Soon follows the steep downhill with ditches. Take the right at the cross-road. The trail cuts generally the main ridge, there are short ups and downs. In the end you do down in Dabravka village. After you cross in at the lower part next to a farm turn left. When you hit again the asphalt just cross it straight. On undulating terrain you reach a T tarmac junction just below Struindol village. Turn right and go down to the center of village Veshtitsa (Witch) and the stone cross next to a wild pear tree. From there turn left west towards Rabisha village. Pass through Veshtitsa and shortly after you leave the village there will be a road on your right-hand side. Follow it on a very bad tarmac that disappears later and turns into a real off-road in the oak forests. It will lead you to Rabisha. Close to the village you can visit the Magura cave, world famous with its prehistoric drawings and magnificent halls and you’ll face the Rabisha lake – a nice place for picnic, swimming and putting up a tent.
Distance: 4.1km, Cumulative elevation : + 115m, -115m; Level - easy
For warming up or for beginners in MTB take the green trail from the center of the town for just 4.1km. You’ll climb a little to the southern part of the town and then follow the green signs for the roundtrip of Chiprovtsi, which will get you back at the starting point through the main asphalt road.
Distance: 29.2km, Cumulative elevation +1233 m; - 1233m; Level - difficult
Gushovski monastery is the ruin of a monastery situated on a nice meadow – the starting point of the traditional Chiprovtsi MTB racing “Trite chuki”, which is held in September every year. To reach this place you have to climb a gravel road for about 5 km and then the route goes on with the climbing of peak Aldentsi. Short afterwards the trails splits in two – a mild but longer blue trail and a steep red one going directly upwards to the site Deyanitsa and back to Gushovski monastery. The blue trail on the other hand will take you for a large roundtrip around Kopilovtsi and also lead you back to Chiprovtsi.
Distance: 32.6km (24.8km to Prevala); Level - difficult
to PREVALA: Cumulative elevation : + 927m, - 917m;
to GORNI LOM: Cumulative elevation : + 1268m, -1310m
This trail will take you to the highest point in the whole network of routes in this part of the Balkans – the peak Gorno Yazovo. The first few kilometers you’ll follow the road to Martinovo and then close to the abandoned gold mine you’ll take the right to enter the trail to Gorno Yazovo. The trail takes you through a well maintained curvy mountain road. Shortly before the final assault of the Gorno Yazovo peak you can take the right for a fabulous down ride to the village of Prevala or continue until you climb the 1572m high mount with great panorama view.
Then comes the nice part – going down to the village of Gorni Lom. Mind the ditches in the curves! Here you can stay at a guesthouse or if you have some more powers left continue to Falkovets or hut Gorski rai or Chuprene.
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