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The cobbled Roads of Çermenikëblue drive

Summary: The area south of Martanesh (think Bizë) has long been a mystery to us. According to topographic maps, it is an area with deep valleys and seemingly uninhabitable slopes. Roads seem to be drawn on maps like in fantasyland.

The only way to find out is to go and see. We were pleasantly surprised. The area is prime agricultural land, and there seems to be a buzz of activity. On a clear day the views are fabulous, and the roundtrip connecting Funarez, Floq, Orenje and Gurakuq will provide a day full of easy or moderate four-wheeling.

For those wanting to enjoy long off-road drives, getting close to the land and people, without feeling isolated or cut off, this is the thing to do. This trip provides a similar experience than our excursion along part of the Via Egnatia.

The Drive: We recommend to undertake the loop in anti-clockwise direction, because of the better views. Also, the slower and higher-up parts of the trail, along the cobbled roads will be done first, allowing to adjust the length of the trip as you go along. The return from Floq closer to the valley bottom is a bit faster. Here the road is not cobbled (allowing higher speed), but it might be slippery when wet. It should probably be avoided during the rain or in winter.

The loop can be done without the two excursions to Orenje and Gurakuq. We still suggest to go there, for the experience and the views, if not for the bragging rights of having been there.

There is nothing really difficult about this trail, but it is relatively long.

Maximum altitude: 832 meter
Minimum altitude: 280 meter
Cumulative height: 1259  meter
Cumulative length: 44 kilometer
Difficulty moderate
Time: 5 hours
Date of this record November 2013
Download GPS info: Cobbled Roads

General location and approach: Accessible from Librazhd. We are not aware of any shortcut to Elbasan or the Martanesh area.

Other Information: Villages and settlements along the route are small, and it might be difficult to find supplies.

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.