fter the end of the rainy weekends period in the Tatras (during which everyone posted pictures from various ascents and climbs anyway), we decided to go there again. This time the decision fell on the Kežmarský Peak (2,558 m). On Friday evening we came under the Tatras and on Saturday we started. Because we wanted to save our legs and after a long ski touring season we finally wanted to have an “easier” hike, we bought a two-way ticket to Tatranská Lomnica – Skalnaté pleso cable car for 20 €. It took us to elevation of 1772 meters. We started to hike at about 9:00 am, which is quite a late time for the tours in Tatras, but since the return was planned by the cable car, as well, it did not bother us. The weather was pleasant, gently under the cloud, just the views were all foggy, which is also evident from the attached photos (the most beautiful is still to see live). The first part of the ascent along the arterial road (a.k.a. the red mark/flag) traversed the slope of Huncovský peak towards Sedlo pod Svištovkou (Saddle under Svišťovka) (2,023 m), which lied between Malý Kežmarský peak and Velká Svištovka. The way to the saddle was a relaxing walk along the beaten track and large stones. Our route, however, did not go quite up into the saddle, just before it turned left to the ridge (footpaths). There we took a short break. We came there at 9:50. We ate some bars and put on the cushions as we didn’t know what it would look like and whether there would be enough space for them.
When we reached the rocky ridge leading to the Little Kežmarský Peak we took the rope out of backpack, we did not bring it unnecessarily. All five of us were tied to a rope team and continued. The terrain was no longer purely pedestrian, it was sometimes necessary to use hands, but it wasn’t anything extra difficult. According to the route description, there should have been only one quite difficult place that was easy to identify. We arrived to a rocky plateau, after which we had to get a few meters up. It was leaned and there were also couple holds and steps. It wasn’t necessary to be a trained climber to climb it, but some previous experience of using hands at climbing was certainly an advantage. After this place, we proceeded to the peak of Malý Kežmarák (2,513 m above sea level) on the stones and rubble. The road continued to soften to the top. The entire road from the turn from the mark to the top was trodden and in rocky terrain lined with men made of stone. They made it really difficult to get lost in nice weather.
After a short break for eating bars and making photos, most of which were still dominated by white fog, we moved on. On the Great Kežmarský Peak we followed the ridge. There were no problems, the road was straightforward and there were rock cairns here and there. On the left we passed the road leading to the saddle under the Huncovsky shield through which we planned to return. Soon we stood on the top of Kežmarsky peak (2,558 m above sea level, 6th highest peak of Tatras). In front of us was only Vidlovy ridge, one of the most beautiful and most exposed ridges in Tatras, which is situated between Kežmarsky and Lomnický peak. It could be climbed from both sides, but we would climb it some other time. We didn’t admire the views very much (there was milk everywhere), but still we managed to eat tunas while discussing Slovak and Polish climbers. When we satisfied our hunger, we set out on our way back. We stopped also at the Huncovský peak (2,351 m.n.m.) that we had planned and returned a bit along the ascent route. This time on the right side there was a rock rib, which we had seen along the road and which had to be passed from the side of the Huncov basin. There we untied the rope and continued. We got to the Huncovske saddle, from where we followed the obvious path lined with little rock cairns to the top. We didn’t stay there for very long and went down. We could choose from several descent routes, but we chose the way from the saddle down the couloir towards Skalnaté pleso. After the stones and rubble, we descended all the way down to the tarn, which we walked around, and we were back at the cable car. You can also descend directly from the Huncovský peak down the rubble to the cable car. I would not recommend descending in the opposite direction as we climbed. In Huncovská kotlina, the movement of visitors is forbidden (even climbers), so it is necessary to go up the ridge and then you will still have to walk the entire stretch from the Saddle below Svištovka to the cable car.
Overall, it is a nice easy hike. It could be marked route (with a chain on the plate section). In nice weather it is not very difficult for orientation. Basically, all the time you see your goals in front of (above) yourself and the whole route leads on visible paths with rock cairns. It can be simplified by using a cable car.