The Trail of Springs

General Information

Difficultyeasy
Distance4 km
Duration1,5 h
Ascent/Descent42 m/ 42 m
Starting pointParking at the bridge over the stream of Stržen
Distance from the Dormouse House2 km
Tags, ,

Trail Map

Photos

Route Description

The Trail of Springs is an easy-walking trail at the southeastern end of Lake Cerknica. The trail takes you to a secluded corner of the valley of the intermittent lake. There are several springs where water comes out of slopes and fills the main stream after longer periods of rain. Water slowly moves along the Sržen stream, which flows over the whole karst polje of the intermittent Lake Cerknica. In periods with more rainfall or melting snow, if there is more water than the capacity of the river bed, the water will overflow and flood the surrounding area. After several days of heavy rain, a lake forms. 

The best way to start your trip is to park at the bridge over Sržen, just past the village of Gorenje Jezero. Opposite of the parking, you will see a prominent observation platform Malnšče. From the parking you can walk on the asphalt road towards the village of Laze. Just below the village, you will see a forest path to the left. Take that path and follow trail marks depicting a spring. After about half an hour, you will reach the end of the valley, and there are several springs. The amount of water depends on the rainfall. After a rainy period, water can be seen bursting from the porous slopes. In dry periods, the springs are dry but still moist and attract many animals that search for water. 

After you have reached the springs, you can continue and make a circular route. The last part of the trail on the eastern side of the loop crosses very nice meadows. However, that side is much more exposed to the sun. So in the summer, it might be best to return to the starting point the same way over the trail on the western edge, which is in the shadow of trees. 

The trail goes mostly over flat ground and does not demand any climbing. It is appropriate for children but not accessible with a stroller. 

Warning: Parts of the trail might be flooded after heavy rain, and it might not be possible to reach springs. 

 

Things to see

Lake Cerknica is the largest intermittent lake in Slovenia. The Trail of Springs takes you to the very beginning of the lake, where water comes from the ground in several springs. The water comes from the neighboring valley, where it sinks into the cave and comes out again at the springs of Lake Cerknica. 

The surroundings of the springs attract many animals. You can see or hear several species of woodpeckers and ravens. Check mud places for tracks, as several mammals come to this corner to find water. In May, you can see swarms of mayflies that gather in pools to deposit eggs in the water. 

On meadows, you can observe yellow wagtails, corn buntings, and red-backed shrikes. In early June, meadows along the stream of Stržen are the nicest. Wild gladioles are in full flower, and if you are lucky, you can also spot several species of wild orchids. 

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