Easy Access to the Mountains: The Vogel Cable Car
The cable car is a marvel of modern engineering: my cavewoman brain can never quite grasp the fact that it can rise from 569m to over 1535m in under 5 minutes. I never feel like we’re going to make it to the top. But so far, we always have! In truth, the cable car has an impeccable safety record; it’s been carrying passengers safely since 2001 (replacing an older, smaller version which had been in operation since 1961). Furthermore, it is a shortcut to a mountain paradise, and makes the high mountain pasture beneath the Lower Bohinj alps accessible to all.
Summer Activities in Vogel
If you simply want to take in the sights from a fantastic viewpoint, the cable car offers you the opportunity to do this. On a clear day, you will have stunning views of Triglav, Slovenia’s highest mountain, from here (shown in the Featured Image above). There are a variety of restaurants, cafes and bars nearby the Ski Hotel at the upper cable car station. My favourite is Planinska Koča Merjasec – the Wild Boar Mountain Hut. Unfortunately it is closed at the moment, but I sincerely hope they re-open in winter as they serve an amazing wild boar goulash!
The Vogel Ski Centre is also a popular starting point for many summer hikes, not least because it saves 1000m of initial ascent. This may not appeal to true alpinists, but to those pressed for time, or with children to carry, this can prove very useful and worth the price of a cable car ticket. Weather permitting, the Orlove Glave chairlift also operates in summer, and this will take you almost to the summit of Orlove Glave mountain (to reach the summit, walk up to the large wooden cross on the hillside then follow the trail a further 10 minutes.)
Summer Hiking Options from Vogel Ski Centre
The nearest peaks to the the Ski Centre are Orlove Glave (see above), 1682m; Šija (1880m); Visoki Orlov Rob (1800m) and Vogel itself (1922m). Ascent of Šija takes around 1hr 30min from the Ski Hotel, or 1hr if you start from the chairlift. Vogel is Around 2hr, 30 min from the Ski Hotel, or you can walk from Šija via Visoki Orlov Rob, around 1hr 30min between the two. You can descend from any of these peaks to the delightful Planina Zadnji Vogel (Zadnji Vogel Plateau) where you will find a cheese farm with some very friendly chickens! If you don’t fancy a difficult hike, you can also walk straight here from the Ski Hotel (around 40min along a signposted trail).
If you do plan on using the Ski Centre as a starting point for hiking, do bear the following in mind:
- The weather can change fast, even in summer; always bring waterproof clothing and sturdy, non-slip footwear.
- I don’t recommend hiking to any of the summits with young children, unless they are already seasoned hikers. Even the clearly-marked trails require concentration and can be dangerous if not treated with respect.
- If you think it will be easier to descend the ski slope Žagarjev Graben to the valley floor rather than ascend to the Ski Hotel and take the ski lift down, think again! We made this mistake and it was a steep slog over constantly shifting gravel which took around 2 hours and much jarring of ankles and knees. It is a beautiful descent via the Lopata virgin forest, but if you want to take it, come prepared with trekking poles to aid tired legs!
Visit my Instagram page for more views from the Vogel Ski Centre and surrounding area. I hope you enjoyed this post. Stay tuned for more Postcards from Slovenia!