Hiking times: Kuchyňa – Vývrat 1 h. – Vysoká 1 ½ h. – Panské uhliská ½ h. – Hubalová ¼ h. – Čermák ¾ h. – Dreváreň ¾ h. – Kuchyňa 1 ¼ h.
Total: 6 h.
Total climb: 501 m
Map: Small Carpathians – Bratislava, scale of 1:50,000 (sheet 127), VKÚ, a. s., Harmanec.
Difficulty: This is a demanding trail (in particular due to length and total climb) that is more than a half-day hike. The well-marked trail summits Vysoká, the second highest peak in the Small Carpathians. It passes through a number of crossings that mean navigation requires increased attention.
Basic route: From the church in the middle of the town of Kuchyňa (253 m) follow the blue-blazed trail (2407) to the east. Turn onto the first road to the left from the main road leading up from the village. Turn to the left at the end of this road and leave the village behind as the trail moves through the slightly hilly fields, meadows and fruit orchards. Go around the agricultural farm along the field road that passes along the fruit orchards and then climbs into the forest. From the top of a low forested hill the trail climbs a forest path to the recreation centre of Vývrat (300 m) in the valley of Vývrat Brook. Here the trail continues to climb along a slightly slanted trail and then along switchbacks through the high beech trees to the rock beneath Prístodolok. Soon the trail enters the Vysoká natural reservation, which protects the jagged peak standing on the secondary limestone. Vysoká (754 m), the second-highest peak in the Small Carpathians and the highest point of this hike, is reached by following the steep rocky trail. The striking limestone summit offers a gorgeous view. After resting at the summit, the trail continues by descending the other side of the sharp ridge line along the trail through the rock and shrubs. Note the memorial plaques among the rocks with the names of people who have died in the Small Carpathians. From this symbolic cemetery the trail continues downward in a north easterly direction. In a small pass the trail turns to the right and soon crosses an unmarked forest road (Variant I). The basic route continues to descend down to the Panské uhliská crossing (600 m). Turning to the left onto the red-blazed Štefánik Trail (Variant II) to Taricové skaly, the basic route can be extended by around 1 ½ h. However the basic route continues to the south following the blue and red-blazed Štefánik Trail (E8, 0701) to Hubalová pass (535 m). At the crossing in the pass the blue-blazed trail turns to the left (Variant III) but the basic route of the trail continues along the red-blazed section. A forest road with an easy profile bypasses two peaks on the main ridge line, both Gajdoš (650 m) and Modranská Baba (646 m). At the beautiful meadow that seems perfect for a picnic and the crossing of many hiking trails inČermák pass (590 m), leave the red-blazed Štefánik Trail behind and turn to the right. Follow the green-blazed trail (5102) into the valley of Malina Brook. Descend along a forest road to the paved road that drops along the Malina Brook through Dreváreň(390 m), a beautiful forested valley that is made all the more lovely by the silhouettes of the surrounding peaks and the Modranska skala rock formations and other karst phenomena. The valley opens after the Modranska skala formation. The Modranská cesta ("Modra route") leaves the forest and moves along cottages to the upper end of the town of Kuchyňa. The green blazes lead down main street. Taking a short detour to the left and the path through the houses is recommended in order to reach the picturesque setting of the Kuchyňa reservoir. A pleasant path along the levee goes around the reservoir. Return back to town along the side street and follow the green blazes to the church in the centre of Kuchyňa (253 m).
Variant I: The hike can be shortened by following an unmarked forest road that later joins a marked cycling route. Turning to the right provides an easy way to reach Vývrat and the blue-blazed trail leads back to Kuchyňa just as in the initial section of the trail (total: 4 ½ h.).
Variant II: If the hike is extended at the Panské uhliská crossing to include the section to Taricové skaly, the trail soon reaches this interesting rock formation located to the north east of the Vysoká rock formation. This site is rich in limestone flora and is named for the yellow flowering Aurinia saxatilis that is widespread in this area. The site offers a beautiful rock lookout onto Vysoká. Follow the same path back to the Panské uhliská crossing (total: 7 ½ h.).
Variant III: To end the hike near Zochova chata, continue along the blue-blazed trail from Hubalová crossing that takes the forest road in a south easterly direction (total: 4 ½ h.). A similar option is available from Čermák meadow.
Foto: Peter Mach