BABIA GÓRA Powiatsuski 21 February 2022


Babia Góra (1725 m amsl), the highest peak of the Western Beskid Mountains and at the same time the highest point – apart from the Tatras – on the map of Poland, is an exceptional place. Its massive, majestic silhouette rises high above the surrounding mountain ridges, being one of the most characteristic points of the Beskid panorama. The view of the peak, often hidden in clouds and battered by violent winds, has for centuries stirred the imagination of the local people, and local legends made it a place of witches’ sabbaths, feasting with devils (this is probably where the popular name of the main peak of the massif – Diablak – comes from).

Babia Góra is known as the ‘Queen of Beskids’, although the mountain is also called ‘Kapryśnica’ (capricious mountain) and the poet Seweryn Goszczyński baptised it as the ‘Mother of Inclement Weather’. Indeed, the weather on Babia Góra does play tricks on us, and strong winds on its summit are a phenomenon known to almost every tourist who has climbed it, but the ‘Queen’ can also be kind, and in fact it is not uncommon to have beautiful sunny days, during which a trip to the top will remain a wonderful, unforgettable experience. The sunrises (or sunsets) viewed from here are also very famous.

The stone obelisk with the Hungarian inscription, which is no longer readable, commemorates the 1806 expedition of Archduke Joseph Habsburg, the brother of Austrian Emperor Franz I. Next to the obelisk, there is a stone wall, which offers protection from strong winds, very common on the summit. Next to the north-eastern end of the wall, among the boulders, one can find a large, natural rock slab with a barely readable, but still visible, inscription dedicated to Józef Piłsudski, carved on the initiative of The 74 Upper Silesian Infantry Regiment. A little further on, already on the Slovakian side of the border, there is a monument commemorating the visit of John Paul II to Slovakia and his earlier visits to Babia Góra, erected in 1995 by the inhabitants of villages in the Slovakian Orava region near Babia Góra: Oravská Polhora, Rabča, Rabčice and Sihelné.

The surrounding panorama from Babia Góra is considered by many to be the most extensive in the whole Polish Beskid Mountains. Particularly beautiful is the Tatra Mountains chain towering above the flat bottom of the Orawsko-Nowotarska Basin, where the surface of Orava Lake glistens and the roofs of villages in Polish and Slovakian Orava. You can also see a whole range of other mountain ranges in Slovakia (the Nízke Tatry, the Chočské vrchy, the Veľká and Malá Fatra mountains and the lower the Lubovské vrchy and the Magura Oravská) and in Poland (the Żywiec, Silesian, Little, Maków and Island Beskids and the Gorce mountains, and even more distantly: the Beskid Sadecki and the Pieniny mountains).


GPS 49°34’23.3”N 19°31’46.0”E
49.573140, 19.529442

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