Legends of the Tołhaj

Bieszczady Winter Challenge of the Bojko Trail.

races / discover

Runners during the winter Bojko Trail.

   The Bieszczady Mountains are not only beautiful landscapes and picturesque areas, but also a place rich in history and legends. One of the unique events combining these elements is the Winter Bojko- a race through the Bieszczady Mountains. Here is a description of the Tołhaj route, one of the most spectacular and demanding races in the Bieszczady Mountains.

   To begin with, it is worth explaining who the Tołhai were. They were bandits, also called Beskidniks, who in the past terrorised these areas, attacking merchant caravans and villages. It is said that they were the most ruthless in the Bieszczady Mountains, and their legend has survived for over 450 years. The Tołhai people were at home in the mountains, and it was probably they who marked out the first paths through the wild reaches of the Carpathian forest.

Runners during the winter Bojko Trail.

   To face the legend of the Tołhaj family, runners set off from Brzegi Górne, called Berechami. They start individually according to the starting list at seven o’clock. The red trail leads them to Kruhly Wierch, one of the four peaks of Połonina Caryńska. The name of this meadow has its own legend, which tells of a girl who had power over animals and was kidnapped by the Tatars. Caryna escaped thanks to the eagles and later married her rescuer. She is the one who takes care of the połonina and protects it from evil.

Map of the Zimowy Bojko Trail run.

   Runners will have the opportunity to remember this legend during the first 3.5 kilometres of the course, and then they will run down to Ustrzyki Górne, where food and drinks will be waiting for them. This is an important point on the route, especially in difficult winter conditions. After a short rest, the runners will continue along the red trail towards Szeroki Wierch. After 15 kilometres they reach Tarniczka, which has a steep climb of 650 metres. This is another challenge on the route. Before the last part of the route, there will be an opportunity to drink hot tea, which will be brought to the top by volunteers. All that’s left is to admire the beautiful panorama of the Bieszczady Mountains, including Krzemień, Bukowe Berdo, Halicz, Tarnica and Rozsyp

Runners during the winter Bojko Trail.

   It is worth taking the yellow trail at the pass, which leads to the top of Tarnica, one of the Polish Crown of Mountains. There are photographers waiting to immortalise your happy faces against the backdrop of the picturesque Bieszczady Mountains. The rest of the route is downhill, first back to the pass and then along the blue trail to Wołosate. The last three kilometres are fast and require caution, especially in difficult winter conditions. However, nothing should stop you from achieving an impressive finish. At the finish line, the organisers promise medals, photos, delicious food and great satisfaction. This will be the first edition of the Winter Bojek, which will bring unforgettable memories and unique experiences.

Runners during the winter Bojko Trail.

   Throughout the competition, each competitor must carry the mandatory equipment, which will be checked immediately before each competitor enters the start area and may be checked at any time during the race. Failure to carry the required equipment may result in disqualification. (The final equipment of the competitors will be announced in the pre-start announcement on 24 February 2022. The equipment will be checked immediately before the start of each competitor at the entrance to the start area. Competitors who do not have all the mandatory equipment will not be allowed to start!!!)

GPS locator assigned by name for each participant – provided by the organizer;
Starting number with a list of emergency numbers:
Emergency number to GOPR 985 or + 48 601 100 300;
Number to the medical coordinator secured by the organiser + 48 605 319 161;
Number for the time-keeper + 48 660 077 065;
Organiser’s number + 48 507 053 657;
Hooded jacket windproof and waterproof with parameters above 10 000 mm H2);
A spare long-sleeved jacket placed in the running backpack;
footwear designed for mountain running;
Thick gloves and a hat;
Multifunctional scarf;
Ski goggles or goggles;
Long trousers;
Stuffed boots;
Chemical warmers – min 2 pcs;
Thermos with min 250ml of warm liquid;
Charged phone with preloaded route map and emergency numbers for organiser / rescue services;
Preloaded Rescue app;
Each competitor will be insured with an accident insurance policy (NNW and KL) and a medical insurance policy (PZU S.A.);
Backpack containing all compulsory equipment;
NRC foil – 2 items
Bandage – 1 pc;
Mug or container for liquids;

Runners during the winter Bojko Trail.

Zimowy Bojko Trail 21 – Distance: 21 km Elevation: +/- 1250 m

Event website: tourdezboj.com/zimowy-bojko-trail/
Photography: Jan Haręza

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