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Along the Drini Ziblue drive - an Albanian Classic

Summary: The old road along the Drini Zi (the Black Drin) connecting Peshkopi with Kukes must be considered one of the Albanian classics - and surely is on the list of any ambitious offroad enthusiast venturing into Northeast Albania. Older maps mark the road as a major long-distance national road, though this status is clearly no longer deserved since asphalting of the eastern road (along the Korab Massif and the border to Macedonia) has been completed in 2012.

As a consequence, the road sees very little traffic, and almost no heavy trucks. This keeps the road in a fairly good condition (save for a 50 meter stretch, the spot of a landslide in 2009), and movement is swift and comfortable. Still three hours should be planned for the 42 kilometers from Arras, which is the turn off to the eastern side of the Lure National Park, up to Kolesjan where the road meets the asphalt road coming from Peshkopi. This time should be budgeted because of the expected many stops for enjoying the breathtaking views - especially of the Skavicë Gorge and towards the Korab massif - and for taking photographs. The road is fairly exposed at times and should not be taken lightly by travellers with fear of height.

The road can also be driven in reverse direction. Near Arras, one has the choice to proceed to Peshkopi or to turn towards Lure (a slightly more difficult undertaking, see the lure of Lura).

Maximum altitude: 715 meter
Minimum altitude: 315 meter
Cumulative height: 1009  meter
Cumulative length: 32 kilometer
Difficulty generally easy with some moderate spots
Time: 3 hours minimum
Date of this record September 2013
Download GPS info: Drini Zi and Skavice Gorge

General location and approach: Between Kukes and Peshkopi.

Other Information: Many sidetrips should be possible. To venture into the Skavice Gorge would be a special challenge.

GPS and trailmaps: The map and trailinformation is generated by wikiloc, based on GPS information collected from the actual hike. Waypoints can be downloaded to a GPS device from Wikiloc. If necessary, use GPSBabel to convert GPS data to different formats. For more hike descriptions by Palmtreetreeproduction, browse this website or visit Wikiloc and search for "Palmtreeproduction". You may also find nearby trails from other authors.

Google Earth: You may also view the trail in 3D by clicking "view in Google Earth" when on Wikiloc. You need to have Google Earth installed on your computer.