Climb to Mount Pip Ivan

pip ivan observatory

Pip Ivan (AKA Chornohora) is one of the most popular and unpredictable mountains of the Ukrainian Carpathians. The weather can change next minute, regardless of the season. Climbing Pip Ivan got very popular. More and more tourists want to enjoy the beauty of the Chornohirski ridge and try their own hand.

Route options: which one to choose?

Mount Pip Ivan is the third highest mountain of Ukraine (2028 m). Above is only Hoverla and Brebeneskul. Despite the altitude, there are routes that allow you to climb and return to base in one day. However, without basic equipment and physical training you will not be able to quickly overcome the long way.

What to pack: drinking water, food, sunscreen, first aid kit, hiking backpack, sportswear and trekking shoes.

Experienced travelers and amateurs book the ascent to Pip Ivan. Many people want to see the famous astronomical observatory. The walls of the abandoned building are covered with a thick layer of ice and snow in winter, creating the silhouette of a white animal. The observatory was named “White Elephant” for its air of mystery. 

You can climb to the top by different roads, each of which is interesting. Along the way you will see waterfalls, lakes, dense forests, meadows and marked trails. The main routes to Pip Ivan are:

Ascent to Pip Ivan from Dzembronya

dzembronya village
Panorama of Dzembronya

Ascent from Dzembronya village (blue-red markings). It starts from the bus stop. This option is considered simpler and shorter. Travelers climb the Chornohirski ridge and enjoy the beauty of the Smotrych mountain meadow. Along the route you will see the waterfalls and the Eared Stone Mountain (Vukhatyi Kamin). The route rises sharply below the mountain Smotrych, leading to the forest. Between the grounds there’s a gazebo where you can have a rest. At the top of the valley there are barns and a hut where shepherds live during the warm period. Here you can buy homemade cheese.

The total length of the route is 24 km, travel time is 11 hours, altitude difference is 1500 m;

Ascent to Pip Ivan from Shybene

Shybene village (green markings) – is the second option to get to Pip Ivan. A small village is located near the river Black Cheremosh. The route runs near the Romanian border, so make sure to bring your ID. After passing the Pogorilets stream, the road rises to the forest. After 3.5 km there is a forestry, then there is a lake and a pass. The most convenient road leads from the forestry through the Vesnarka dairy farm. There is a house and a source of drinking water. You can relax. Then the route passes through the forest, leading to Lake Maricheika. The end point is the top.

The length of the route is 23 km, the travel time is 11 hours, the height difference is 1200 m.

Ascent to mount Pip Ivan season is May to October. Experienced travelers can go hiking on their own. Beginners should join tour groups accompanied by a guide. You can get there by bus, car, taxi or book a transfer at Transfer-Bukovel.

How to get there and where to stay?

There are two roads to Dzembronya: from Iltsi village and from Verkhovyna. Buses run only three times a day. The first option is less practical, especially for a large group. Often the minibus is full of passengers. It will be uncomfortable and cramped with bulky backpacks. 

You can go by car or hitchhiking (catch a ride). You should not go on foot. First, it is not easy to walk 12 km with a backpack. Secondly, it is pointless to waste energy before climbing a mountain. You can make the trip as easy as possible if book a transfer to Dzembronya or Shybene

We advise you to stay in Vorokhta or Verkhovyna. There are cottages and hotels. Double room will cost from UAH 500 per night. There is a large selection of housing for any budget in Verkhovyna. Local restaurants offer traditional Hutsul dishes.

Before the hike, order food at the cottage or hotel where you stayed, because the climb starts in the morning. If you do not want to get to Dzembronya to join the group, stay in the village. There is an option to stay in a camp on the Black Cheremosh river. 

The best time to ascent Pip Ivan is from May to October. With the onset of spring on the mountain slopes bloom crocuses, and in early summer – red rue. You can enjoy raspberries, blueberries in July – August. In summer and autumn there are many mushrooms in the local forests.  

Transfer Bukovel knows everything about the Carpathians. We cooperate with travel and excursion agencies. We have a large fleet. We will help you organize a safe holiday. We offer good prices, equipped cars and experienced drivers. Contact our managers for advice. Contact information is provided on the website. Book a transfer and we guarantee that your climb to Mount Pip Ivan will begin with positive emotions. 

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