Morskie Oko and over the Krzyzne pass

Everyone who heads to the Polish Tatras visits Morskie Oko as it’s a popular beauty spot. Whilst I usually look to get off the beaten track I had decided a bus ride around there would provide a great opportunity to walk back to Zakopane over the mountains.

To Morskie Oko

The walk into the Morskie Oko hut from the bus stop is a very boring 8km walk along a tarmac road. There are horse carriages but I’d opted to walk and save money, and as I was staying at the hut that night I didn’t have anything else to do that day.

Morskie Oko lake is beautiful but arriving in the middle of the day it was very busy.

I dropped my big bag in the hut and walked up to the upper lake of Czarny Staw pod Rysami. This is a relatively short walk with a steep ascent but worth it for a close up view of Rysy, Polands highest mountain. It had been on my list to do, as there is a chained path to the summit, but with the snow and ice I decided a solo trip up there possibly wasn’t wise.

The following morning I left the hut early and set off to walk back to Zakopane. The route I took was a 18km hike that took me past more lakes and over Krzyzne at 2112m.

Over Krzyzne

From Morskie Oko I took the blue trail which headed uphill and then traversed around before descending to the hut near Przedni Staw Polski lake.

I arrived near the hut around 9am, just as the sun was coming over the hill to warm the valley.

From the lake I took the yellow route which headed across the hillside before heading steeply uphill on a scrambly path to reach Krzyzne at 2112m. It was a long slow rocky scramble but worth it for the views.

After a brief stop for lunch I headed downhill to Murowaniec hut. It’s a long slow slog down, initially as it was a snowy scree descent but then just because it was far and I was knackered carrying overnight and winter kit.

After pizza and a coffee at the hut, I took the yellow path down the Kuznice for the bus back to town.

It’s a great linear route with little technical difficulty (assuming you don’t encounter snow and ice). There is however some amazing views and traversing a mountain range is always a great idea.

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