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Chornohora Wilderness Candidate

Chornohora Wilderness Candidate

Chornohora Wilderness Candidate

  • Author: Vlado Vancura
  • Date Posted: Sep 28, 2021
  • Category: ,
  • Address: Ukraine

Chornohora Wilderness

The 1 130 ha Chornohora Wilderness Candidate is embedded into the Carpathian Biosphere Reserve. The Reserve is in the Ukrainian part of Carpathian Mountain. The Carpathian Biosphere Reserve already hosts the certified Uholka – Shyrokyy Luh Wilderness, Kuziy-Trybushany WILDForest and Maramarosh Wilderness. The Reserve further includes additional, large area with Wilderness potential: Svydovec

Chornohora Wilderness represents an outstanding example of undisturbed old-growth mixed forest (beech, fir and spruce), tree line with mugo pine and rare fragments of subalpine and alpine habitats (composition of mugo pine, juniper, alder and rhododendron). Sub-alpine meadows used to be intensively grazed in the past but currently, grazing is very limited and the area has many signs of natural succession.  There are also several wild streams, such as the Ozirnyi, Bilyi, Skopeshchyk and Keveliv Streams.

The area contains a large genetic reservoir on which many species depend and can be associated with this wide spectrum of habitats. Parts of Chornohora Wilderness are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site – Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe.

European Wilderness Quality Standard Audit System

The 1 130 ha Chornohora Wilderness was subject to a Pre-Audit in spring 2019 and meets the Bronze Wilderness

Quality Standard. After finalising the Quick-Audit, there is a large potential to expand Chornohora Wilderness to the size of approx. 15 000 ha and increase its Wilderness Quality Standard.

Wilderness information

  • Protected area: Carpathian Biosphere Reserve
  • Wilderness: Chornohora Wilderness
  • Wilderness Quality Standard: Bronze
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Size of the protected area: 57 880 ha
  • Size of the Wilderness: 1 130 ha (with a potential for enlargement to 16 992 ha)
  • European Wilderness Quality Standard Pre-Audit: 2019
  • Wilderness Uniqueness: Large area of old-growth beech and mixed forest with wild rivers and rare fragments of subalpine and alpine habitats, favourable habitat for wolf, bear and many other rare species
  • Number of visitors per year to the protected area: approx. 20 000
  • Number of visitors per year to the Wilderness: approx. 2 000


The Chornohora Wilderness is a large area with old-growth beech and mixed beech-spruce-fir forests. It is an area of great international importance and a local hotspot for biodiversity which depends on spontaneous natural processes and ecosystem dynamics. It contains representatives of flora and fauna typical for old-growth Carpathian beech and mixed forests, tree line and subalpine meadows. Tree line and subalpine meadows were used in the past for intensive grazing. The striking and impressive features of this area are the big trees; broken tree stems covered with a variety of fungi and fragments of wild undamaged tree line. The area has a permanent small population of brown bears, wolves and lynxes. Typical bird dwellers in the area are the black stork and eagle-owl.

Wilderness Tourism Experience

Chornohora Wilderness can be accessed using several marked trails. The most popular trail goes along the northern border following the ridge between Carpathian Biosphere Reserve and Carpathian National Nature Park. This trail is intensively used as it leads to the highest point of the Carpathian Mountains in Ukraine – Hoverla (2 061 m) and gives the possibility to continue to Petros (2 020 m).

Chornohora Wilderness is located approx. 210 km from Uzhhorod and approx. 90 km from Ivano Frankivsk. The starting point for hikers is usually Rachiv town or Kvasy village. The marked trails provide a unique experience in Chornohora Wilderness leading through primeval beech and mixed forest, tree line and pass through traditionally used alpine meadows (poloniny).

Contact details

  • Chornohora Wilderness – Candidate
  • Carpathian Biosphere Reserve
  • Address street: Krasne Pleso Street, 77,
  • Postal code city: 90600, Rakhiv, Ukraine
  • Phone: +380 3132 22193
  • Website:


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