In the heart of Bosnia and Herzegovina tucked between Vareš and Kraljeva Sutjeska, rises mountain Perun. It was one of the cult places in South Slavic countries dedicated to the supreme Slavic god of Perun. In Slavic mythology, he was the god of thunder and lightning.
This area is covered with dense coniferous forests and rich with iron ore. There are traces that prove, that since ancient times, this place was famous for its miners and smiths. But, after the last war in Bosnia and Herzegovina the mines were abandoned and just few smiths are left to preserve the traditional, medieval way of forging iron. In one of the abandoned mines beneath Perun mountain, an artificial lake was formed in the excavations of the former mining pits. The lake is called Nula (Zero) and it is about 500 m long, 300 m wide and 100m deep. Now, during the winter months the lake is often frozen, but in the summer many residents of Vareš come here for a refreshment during the hot summer days.
Recently, my friend and I went on a two-day adventure of exploring divine Perun mountain on snowshoes. From Vareš we made a round tour across Perun. Deep in the coniferous forest of Perun, away from civilization, there is a mountain hut called Javorje. Here you can enjoy in silence and smell of the fir and pine trees. The hut is opened during the weekends and during other days in arrangement with the host. From Vareš to the hut you can enjoy in approximately 2h and 30 min long walk through the forest. The path is uphill all the way to the hut, but for me a forest paths are my favourite. From the hut, you can hike to the two highest peaks of Perun- Karasovina (1472 m a.s.l.) and Površje (1454 m a.s.l.), that are also the highest peaks in Zenica-Doboj Canton. The hike to Karasovina is short and easy, appr. 1h of walking. It is covered with deciduous trees and there is no view, but you can take a rest and enjoy in the nature at picnic shelters that are placed at the peak. Don’t forget to put a stamp in your hiking pass and sign in the guest book! A stamp and the book are placed in the box that is hooked to a tree.
The trail from the hut to Površje peak goes through the forest and across big beautiful meadows. The view from the top is breathtaking! You can enjoy in 360 degrees view of marvellous mountains covered with snow – Vlašić, Vranica, Čvrsnica, Prenj, Bjelašnica, Jahorina, Romanija and Zvijezda.
Further, the trail goes through two small settlements- Poljice and Semizova Ponikva.The first settlement is situated beneath Površje peak and during the winter months mainly people don’t live here. Semizova Ponikva settlement is very close to Vareš and there is asphalt road that leads to it. On the final part of the trail there is beautiful panorama view of Vareš. Across, you will see Zvijezda mountain and beneath you Vareš situated in the valley of Stavnja river.
Perun mountain is not that high, but is truly a divine mountain, that has many stories and legends to tell and beauties to show to all visitors. Come and experience Vareš and Perun for yourself!
Short video of the beauties of Mt. Perun:
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