I don’t even know how many times have I been on this, as I call it, homeland mountain, but the feeling I had the first time, when I saw the abyss that divides Treskavac and Šila and the inaccessible cliffs above the katun (temporary shepherds’ shelter), is always the same. How many times have I watched in awe the chopped-off peak of Treskavac (in literal translation “the one who shakes”) and tried to decipher, in summer, during my leisure time in Brskut (my ancestors’ village), the mystery of the ancient event that caused a part of the mountain to shake off its top, creating this huge stone avalanche? The folks’ story found the answer in a legend. Me? I still don’t know.
This time we did not start the hike from the katun with the picturesque name of Guzovalja (in literal translation “ass roll”), but from the opposite side of the mountain, from katun Bljuštur. The remains of a last summer forest fire showed the fearful consequences of human nonchalance towards nature. Pictures of a destroyed landscape, burned ground and forests, together with mudslides, followed us through our walk.
We headed towards Momonjevo katun. A big group with almost 50 hikers. On the left side was Mount Voćeška that hides a water spring deep inside a forest. Two years ago I managed to find that spring and that’s when I heard the story about the harsh life of local people. They used to melt the snow to get water if the spring was too far for them.
On our way through Grope we encountered a strange picture in the sea of stone in front of us – Bukumir graveyard.
In ancient times, people would put a huge boulder to stand upright and mark someones death. By the legend, the Bukimiri, an ancient tribe, killed each other here. These rocks stand as silent witnesses of the disappearance of a whole tribe. This is a place where the history of Bukumir people ends and where the legend starts. People also claim that the stone heaps around Momonjevo are actually a Bukumir graveyard. I heard stories from old folks that such piles of old tribes exist in Brskut too, but that’s probably just a story to give an answer to the mysterious history of this place. Legends mainly speak about tragic events, and this place’s history sounds really tragic. These people’s legends also include bloody fairy tales.
We were entering Momonjevo, a lone village under the snow. At the distant end of the katun, we saw a huge round stone. According to legend, this stone was the result of a fight between the local shepherds for the love of a fairy.
We continued to the mountain pass that offers a magnificent view over the rest of the mountains called Kučke Planine. These mountains are under eternal snow and ice. In Šila, part of Žijevo, down to Guzevalja, the locals have already finished the ground work.
At the top
We took photos on the top – mostly non-spontaneous, perfectly practiced posing for social networks profile photos ready for likes. And in a more old fashioned way of proving that we have been at the top, we stamped our mountaineer’s booklets and put signatures in the notebook that was thoroughly protected by mountain boulders. By signing the notebook we left our little marks on the passage of time, sealed into the mountain.
We descended from Treskavac towards Bukumirsko Lake. The path looked almost abandoned, which, next to the snow, made our passage difficult. On our exit from the forest we could see Pasjak and Velji vrh. This was another perfect place for taking photos. Bukumirsko Lake appeared to be one more place for a rest. One thing that tortured me was that the lake has become accessible with ordinary cars for some time already and I still don’t know if that is good or bad.
How did Bukumirsko lake come about?
In ancient times a lone traveler past through this dry area. Somewhere in the mountains, he stopped, tired and thirsty, and started to pray for some water. He touched the rock with his stick and a strong water spring started. From that spring started another, and another, and another. The traveller thank the God and continued his journey. The water flowed to the valley and after some time created the lake, hidden between rocky mountains, which hold eternal snow and ice. The lake which will be a silent witness to the fight of Bukumiri and cursed people…
The misterous lone traveller was a sacred man – Saint Sava…
In the dark green water reflection we could see the intimidating Pasjak or Kariman, as the locals call it. It looks so proud-spirited because it hides an immense secret – according to legend, the leader of a group of anathema is hiding here in its deep and unapproachable caves. On the other side of the lake is the Bukumira stone. These two giants have been looking at each other over the lake water since the beginning of times.
Last time I wrote an article about how I was shocked that people leave garbage at the lake. Unfortunately, it is now a common thing, and usually the mountaineers collect that garbage. And when I thought nothing can surprise me I noticed that there is fish in the lake. This means that the water lizard Triturus alpestris montenegrinus that lives here is probably already extinguished, as fish usually eats this kind of triton. Knowing this, I sometimes ask myself who represents good and who evil in the legends.
After a longer break we left this place of legends, going back following a wriggly road behind Zagon that runs through my grandfather’s forest. The best place to take a look at Brskut, towards one of my favorite houses. The growing distance was slowly hiding Mount Torač and the greyness of the mountains. The peaks of Pasjak, the guardian of a long lost secret, slowly disappeared in the distance.
lawyer by profession, and in free time a mountaineer, explorer, published author.
My favourite writer said that he believes that every story finds the one to which it is intended, like a message sent from the old times. Walking along the mountain tracks, which hide places of the old stories and legends, expecting to be found by a story, I am sharing that with you, here on this blog…