Ascent of Peleaga on 2014-09-25

Climber: Rob Woodall

Other People:Solo Ascent
Date:Thursday, September 25, 2014
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
    Elevation:8232 ft / 2509 m

Ascent Trip Report

After my Parangul ascent I drive back down to Petrosani then an unusually easy drive along a good road leads to Ohaba de sub Piatra where I turn L (N45.546, E22.9896). Just after a river bridge the road becomes unpaved and the last 6km are slow, needing care in places.

Apparently it is forbidden to drive beyond Carnic N45.43407 E22.89347, although I accidentally drive 1km further, discovering it's pretty rocky, then checking my notes and driving back to the last buildings, where at Carnic in Cabana Codrin I enjoy a simple meal and a beer and take a bed in a dorm (which I have to myself) - all for about £12.

Next morning I start hiking at 0650, first light, frosty. Walk 4x4 road then L at N45.40749 E22.88559, 1368m onto trail, stepping stones, footbridge: trail then turns immediately L following riverbank before climbing thru nice forest. I fork L at N45.39999 E22.88351 signposted Valea Rea; neat footbridge; trail then turns L downstream before climbing away from river. At deep boggy section I keep a bit R inside wood,4 keeping feet dry, rejoining trail 50m further on. Trail climbs steadily, out of woodland, thru pine scrub, crosses a rocky bluff, then open grass and rock terrain where I follow a cairned route: seem to be very few paint markings. Martin Richardson came this way a month ago and his track is very useful, as is openstreetmap although less accurate here.

Scenery is impressive with plenty of rock glowing in the early sunshine. I keep R of a boggy stream then follow cairns across a boulder field (mapped trail is too far L) to gain paintmarked path traversing slopes of Papusa heading for the Peleaga col.

Gaining the col I decide to first visit Varful Papusa as it is mapped as only 1m lower than Peleaga hence needing a precautionary visit. Good slightly intermittent trail thru stonefields: boot prints of an earlier party. Sign at summit (N45.36987 E22.90796) indeed reads Papusa 2508m. However my GPS reads only 2504m after settling for a few minutes - elsewhere in Romania it has generally read c.5m higher than mapped elevations. I visit the cairned summit 130m to SE, N45.36891 E22.90909: probably 1m lower.

I head down, checking the saddle elevation N45.36948 E22.89767, 2283m suggesting P220m for the non ultra. Decent trail up Peleaga, snowy higher up; nice little arete (easily avoidable) leading to the summit boulder N45.36565 E22.89283, 2519m. I'm reading 15m higher than on Papusa; comparison with background hills behind Papusa which are considerably lower, seems to confirm Papusa is significantly lower then Peleaga. A little further R (SE), yesterday's snowy summit Parangul is very clear.

This is my 200th ultra, as I'd expected for some months that it would be. Fine scenic summit for the occasion; nice dusting of snow; nice weather too.

I follow MR's route down the NW ridge then shortcut R on a route shown on openstreetmap. No sign of a trail on the ground (possibly hidden by snow) but the crucial descent point is marked by cairn at N45.36915 E22.87978 then trail descends R before cutting sharply back L and dropping beneath a crag. I then descend a boulder slope then follow mapped line (again nothing seen on ground) across grass and stony ground to join obvious paintmarked trail at N45.37309 E22.87405 which I follow down past Gentiana hut, further down crossing a bouncy footbridge, passing a couple of parties of walkers, the first of the day. Lower down I branch R at xxxx and soon rejoin my upward trail thru forest, which I follow down via the footbridge to the 4x4 road which I follow back to car.

Timings: 3h40 to Papusa; 20 mins at summit; 50 mins to Peleaga, 15 mins at summit; 2h40 back to car. I'm quickly on my way as it's a fair drive to my next summit Bihor / Cucurbate Mare and I want to avoid night driving if I can. Just as well, as the road is being widened...
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:5608 ft / 1709 m
    Total Elevation Loss:5608 ft / 1709 m
    Round-Trip Distance:14 mi / 22.6 km
    Grade/Class:YDS 1 (2)
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Stream Ford
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:5608 ft / 1709 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 4886 ft / 1490 m; Extra: 722 ft / 220m
    Loss on way in:722 ft / 220 m
    Distance:7.8 mi / 12.6 km
    Route:Valea Rea
    Start Trailhead:Carnic (N trailhead)  3346 ft / 1019 m
    Time:3 Hours 40 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:4886 ft / 1489 m
    Distance:6.2 mi / 10 km
    End Trailhead:Carnic (N trailhead)  3346 ft / 1019 m
    Time:2 Hours 45 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Rob Woodall
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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