NORTHERN VELEBIT MOUNTBIKE TRAILS
From starting point, the trail follows along the main road toward Senj through the villages of Krč, Jankovići and Glavaši, and slightly ascends along the same road up to the branch for the Shrine of Our Lady of Krasno on Mt. Plas. To the Shrine there leads a good, slightly ascending,macadam road (5 km long), part of which passes through deciduous and coniferous woods, while another part offers a beautiful panoramic view of Krasno and its surrounding mountain peaks. The paved road continues just before the Church of Our Lady of Krasno, from where the trail winds down toward the village of Devčići on the main road. At the Shrine, by all means, visit the 17th Century Church of Our Lady of Krasno. If you turn right at the church toward the motel, you will see a beautiful view of Krasno and parts of the Gacko and Lika fields, while on clear days,you will also be able to see the peaks of southern Velebit and Plješivica.
n the village of Devčić the trail turns right and follows the main road to the village of Krčić, where it turns right again on the local paved road leading through the Dujmišići and Polje villages, and connects again to the main road and leads further to starting point. In the village of Dujmišić you can see the old stone-cut wells, in various shapes, many with "spouts" cut out of a single stone, where you can quench your thirst or learn of their history from the friendly local residents. In Polje you can visit the parish Church of St. Anthony, as well as the newly-opened Museum of Forestry the only one in Croatia.
Trail length: 14 km
From starting point, the trail leads along the main road to the village of Polje, where it branches left and passes through Dujmišići to Krčić, connects again to the main road leading through Devčići toward Otočac. The trail then turns right toward Kosinj where the paved road is about 1.8 km long, and then turns right again on a macadam road and after 300 m turns right again on a logging path, which at first slightly ascends and then steeply descends. This is the most difficult section of the trail, and care should be taken due to unpredictable sharp rocks or mud.
For less experienced bikers, we recommend dismounting their bikes at this section. After one kilometre, the trail connects again to the macadam road, which passes through a lively landscape of pastures, stone walls, and coniferous wood to the village of Dolac, where it further extends 2.3 km along the paved road to starting point.
Another option: Turn right onto a macadam road, 100 m from the Devčići village, and enjoy a lovely vista of the Dolac hamlet. After further 2 km, the macadam merges again with the paved road, getting you back to the starting point.
Trail length: 12 km
This trail initially follows the same path as Trail 1, up to the Jatare rest area. Here it takes a right turn onto a macadam road, reaching the Dujmišići hamlet after a 2.5 km ride. For those wishing to combine more than one trail, there is a connection with Trail 1 and Trail 2 at Devčići. To reach it, go straight on at the crossing, 200 m before Dujmišići, and then continue along Trail 1 and Trail 2 at Devčići.
The trail passes through a lively landscape of drystone walls, natural stone "sculptures", aromatic herbs, and offers a view of the Krasno villages and surrounding peaks. This section is especially interesting in autumn when you can find and taste various wild fruits (hazelnuts, cornel berry, hawthorn berry, rose hip). From the village of Dujmišići, the trail further extends as Trail 1 to starting point.
Trail lenght: 7 km
From starting point this trail leads as Trails 1 and 3, but in the village of Krč (at the crossroads for Senj-Štirovača) it turns left toward Štirovača. After 150 m in the village of Anići it turns right on the paved road toward Zavižan, i.e. the village of Vukelići. One hundred meters after the last houses, and before reaching the end of the paved road, the trail leads right on a macadam road, which in the shade of deciduous and coniferous wood, winds through green pastures fenced with drystone walls.
After 1.7 km, the trail branches left on a dirt road leading for 500 m to the village of Ivetići. From there the paved road continues to the village of Glavaši and the main road by which you cycle back to the Krč crossroads and further by the same trail to starting point. In Glavaši you can visit the "Krasno Park" with autochthonous plants, attended trails and rest benches. We recommend this trail to less experienced bikers.
Trail lenght: 7 km
This cycle trail is designed to have three entrances (starting points) - Vratnik, Oltari and Sv.Juraj. Independent paths branch off from these points, each a few kilometres long, to merge back into a confluent circular path, dubbed “the Ring”.
The Ring is 14 km long, touring villages of Stolac-Žukalj-Tuževačka glavica-Livadice-Liskovac and getting you back to Stolac.
Route description: The Ring: The trail first ascends along a paved road to reach Žukalj village (1,5 km), turning right to a 3,5 km-long macadam road, to where the road splits into two at Tuževačka glavica. Take the right one, over Vedro polje to a crossroad at Livadice (3,8 km). Keep cycling straight on along a macadam road to Liskovac (3,2 km), and for another kilometre along a paved section towards Stolac i.e. the starting point of the Ring.
Option 1 Vratnik – The Ring -Start from a closed-down motel parking lot at the Vratnik Saddle (cars may be left here). Ride towards south, along a macadam road to reach Alan village (3,5 km). Continue along a paved road towards Stolac (2,7 km) until you join the Ring trail.
Option 2 Oltari – The Ring - Start from Oltari hamlet and ride north along a paved road below a chapel to Rakita, where the road turns towards Tuževac (2,6 km) and the macadam descends further to a crossing (i.e. to Tuževačka glavica connection with the Ring trail).
Option 3 Sv. Juraj – the Ring - Start cycling from D8 motorway in Sv Juraj, taking a paved road towards Novo naselje and pedalling up several sharp bends to the Hrmotine hamlet
(a 7-km ride). This ride includes a challenge of pulling off a 600-m altitude difference. Ride on along a macadam, over Samaržija village to an O-crossing at Livadice (a 2-km ride), to join the Ring trail. You may wish to turn right towards the Crni vrh belvedere (0,7 km) and take pleasure in a grand view from a fire-brigade observation post, with the whole of sub-Velebit coastline and the isles of Kvarner Archipelago laid just before your eyes. This route is the toughest, demanding a steady uphill ride from a near-zero altitude to as high as 1000m above the sea. Cyclists are therefore warned to take plenty of water and avoid rides in hot weather as the trail is under direct sunlight for the most of its length.
Combination of all trails: Start by Trail 1 all the way to Devčić, continue further by Trail 2 through Dolac to the office building of the "North Velebit" Nature Park, further by Trail 4 through Vukelići to Glavaši, and finally by Trail 3 through Ogorak and Dujmišići to starting point.
TRAIL 1 / Brušane – Rizvanuša – Brušane
The starting point is in Brušane, at the turn towards the educational trail Teresiana (Stara pila). The path leaves the motorway Gospić - Karlobag, to a macadam road and heads towards Brušanska duliba, offering a scenic ride in the midst of the woods, abunding in its variery (hawthorn, hornbeam, dog-rose, hazel, black pine, beech). The view of the surrounding peaks opens up before us; Kornjevača and Sadikovac being the most prominent. After pedalling another 3 km to a plateau where Suvaja brook murmurs, you can relax in a wooden hut.
Further on, you will cycle accross Suvaja to another side of Brušanska Duliba. At 9.3 km from the starting point there is a crossroad, where you can choose either of the two routes: Brušane (Route 1a), or Rizvanuša (Route 1b).
The Route 1a takes you towards Brušane (left) after 3.3 km. Once you are on a main road, and turning left, you go back to the starting point.
You can get to Rizvanuša by turning right at the main road through Brušane. This route is 14 km long.
The Route 1b is longer: at 9.3 km (at the crossroad), you continue straight to Rizvanuša. You will pedal through beech forest, which is great for its cool calmness in the summer. Cycling alongside Duliba, you can revel in the beauty of the valley, with the surrounding peaks as the backdrop. Having passed 17 kilometres, you will arrive in the picturesque hamlet of Rizvanuša at the base of the Velebit mountain. The road leads you further on, owards the connection with the Gospić Karlobag motorway. Left again, the trail takes you back to the starting point through Brušane.
Trail lenght: 24 km
TRAIL 2 / Baške Oštarije - Stupačinovo - Prpići
The start is at the „Velebno“ hotel, turning right and along the main road towards Karlobag. After 400 m, take another right turn in the direction of Stupančinovo. This portion of the trail is asphalt-paved. You will cycle through beech forest, and left at 2.4 km, onto a macadam road. This section offers you great vistas of Dabarski kukovi and the Badanj hill. Here you start a descent towards a small village of Prpići at 3.4 km, where we recommend extra care because of sharp stones and dirt (our advice is that less experienced cyclists get off their bikes at this section). After 500 m, the trail merges with a narrow asphalt road, leading on to the main road Gospić-Karlobag (5.1 km).
Before descending to the main road, you should definitely climb the Kubus gazebo, which commands a magnificent view of the island of Pag on one side, and Oštarije valley and peaks of Velebit on the other.
A mountain house «Prpa» is nearby. To get back to the starting point, cycle the main road to Oštarije.
Trail lenght: 7 km
TRAIL SOUTHERN VELEBIT
his trail begins alongside the National Highway D-27 Gračac - Obrovac, where it branches towardsKaštel Žegarski, descending through scenery of low bushes and evergreen macchia. Riders should take good care because of steep decline and numerous sharp turns. After 4.5 km you can take a right turn (Route a) to a macadam road towards Ravni Golubić.
Cycling another 1.5 km, you will reach the village, where from you can hike up a marked trail to a belvedere offering a marvelous view of Sastavci, the merging of the Krupa and Zrmanja Rivers (1 h).
The trail leads on to a school in Golubić (5.8 km), where Route b starts at a right turn to a macadam road. After 1 km ride, you will reach the last houses in the village. A fabulous view opens up to the canyon of the River Krupa. If you have some time to spare, we recommend climbing down a mountain path to the Kudin Bridge, a structure which has for centuries resisted the turbulent surges of water and connected the River Krupa banks.
The trail continues from Golubić in the direction of Kaštel Žegarski, and after less than 1 km, you will reach a belvedere on top of the steep canyon of the river Krnjeza. It commands a wonderful view of the mouth of the Krnjeza River, merging with Krupa. The trail descends from the belvedere to the Krupa Monastery (11.4 km) and goes on to Kaštel Žegarski (17.3 km). You will here revel in one of the most beautiful and the cleanest Croatian rivers - Zrmanja. For all desiring a great rafting adventure on this river, this is the starting point.
Leaving Kaštel Žegarski, take a right turn towards Obrovac. This section is an opportunity to enjoy the vista of a deep cleft of the Zrmanja canyon. At 23.7 km, after the village of Bogatnik, the trail separates to the right, towards Bilišani and continues along the macadam path. The trail offers views of the Zrmanja canyon, and Velebit peaks. Here, at 29.3 km, you will get onto an asphalt road towards Bilišani, where it turns right after 1.6 km, to a macadam, and further on to Muškovci, where the cycle trail ends. Muškovci is at the same time the final point of the rafting trip. You can here relax and refresh yourself, take a walk to the Berber buk, see the sights of the Ogare hamlet, refresh from the summer heat by swimming in the clean Zrmanja, or embark on a river boat.
Trail lenght: 30.9 km
RULES FOR CYCLISTS:
- Before each ride, study the trail you are planning to take! Always wear your helmet and cycling clothes, preferably in light colours.
- Ride on permitted trails only! Do not leave deep traces, and if the trailbed is soft, practice low-impact cycling. Don't create new trails.
- Control your bicycle! Obey speed regulations and take heed of the cars, especially if you are riding on a busy road.
- Always yield trail, especially if you are coming from behind! Yielding means slow down, use your bell or stop if necessary.
- Do not leave traces! Do not drop litter! If you live or work close to the cycle trail, help the community to preserve the environment and wildlife.
- Never scare animals! Although a man may not hear you are coming, an animal will be startled by an unannounced approach. You surely do not want alarmed animals, therefore be extra careful and never behave violently.
* Since some sections of these trails belong to roads used by the Croatian National Forest company and their activities (wood transportation, extraction of wood products, woodcutting etc.), you need to be careful here and obey traffic regulations. Some of the trails may be temporarily closed at times of larger-scope activities of the Croatian Forest company. Therefore, you are advised to obtain information about this when you are planning your trip.
** You will come across signs of wild animals (roe-deer, deer, wild boars, bears). If you are lucky enough, you may even spot them. Binoculars are recommended.
***For those of you who prefer not to have a live encounter with a bear, though, we suggest you avoid cycling early in the morning and late in the afternoon.