Finally got back to Suva Planina (Dry Mountain) to hit the other major peak on this ridgeline. I've hiked on this mountain twice before. The first time, we couldn't finish because of heavy rain. The second time I got to Trem, the highest peak on the mountain. All that was really left was Sokolov Kamen (Falcon's Rock), the slightly lower peak. The last two hikes I did the same trail from the north side from a trailhead called Bojanine Vode. This time I studied my Suva Planina topo map and decided a southern approach from a small village called Gornji Dusnik. My brother-in-law Mika was nice enough to ride me out and back 3 days before to scope out the area, find the trail, a place to park, etc.
The trail starts out the first 2.5 miles as dirt roads. It starts off ok, then quickly degrades to as bad as anything the Tonto NF can throw at you. Driving was definitely out of the question unless you have a major 4WD, and then it would be very slow going as to just as well hike it. But then around the 2 mile mark it gets nice and level, making me wish I had rented a 4WD instead of a mini-Chevy.
At 2.5 miles, the road has a junction. The GPS track I downloaded from Wikiloc said to go left, even though the road was marked as if to say I should to straight. The left road led me to a rather large unoccupied house where the road ended. I followed the track an found an actual trail that started behind the house. not long after, I found the red and white paint markings indicating the offical trail that I saw on the map and have on my digital topo.
The trail behind the house was more of a "green tunnel", which was pretty nice. the temps here now are pretty high, mid 90s, but up this high around 4000' it was a cool 70 degrees. The early hiking along the roads in the canyons at the foot of the mountain were shaded early in the morning, making the starting hike temps 65 or less.
at about 3 miles, the green tunnel finally cleared and the first views of the ridgeline and peaks appeared. It was also very steep along this section, making for several "picture" breaks.
Just short of the ridgeline the trail faded away, so decided to just turn left towards Sokolov Kamen and the trail along the ridge. My original plan was to may also try to hike to Trem after Sokolov Kamen, but I could tell by how I felt on the ridgeline that wasn't going to happen today.
The trail up to Sokolov Kamen was faint in some places but still easy to follow. It was a little rocky in places and the steady climb made for an exhausting hike by the time I hit the peak. I was a little confused as to where the peak was exactly as there isn't a really obvious high point. In fact, I don't think Sokolov Kamen was even the highest point along this end of the ridge. I finally did find it because it's marked with a metal marker. I knew to look for something like this because this trail is the Nis Tranversal Trail on my map and I know that certain prominent points are numbered and have some type of markers at their locations.
The hike down was hard on the knees and quads, but still worth the effort. Temps got warm by the time I finished but at least I was going downhill.