Activity

Arzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank

Download

Trail photos

Photo ofArzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank Photo ofArzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank Photo ofArzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank

Author

Trail stats

Distance
36.55 mi
Elevation gain
2,782 ft
Technical difficulty
Moderate
Elevation loss
1,365 ft
Max elevation
6,455 ft
TrailRank 
34
Min elevation
4,774 ft
Trail type
One Way
Time
6 hours 25 minutes
Coordinates
1378
Uploaded
December 13, 2016
Recorded
June 2016
Be the first to clap
Share
-
-
6,455 ft
4,774 ft
36.55 mi

near Arzakan, Kotaykʼ (አርሜኒያ)

Viewed 766 times, downloaded 4 times

Trail photos

Photo ofArzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank Photo ofArzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank Photo ofArzakan, Bjni, Hrazdan Reservoir (1,710m), Makravank Church (Hrazdan town), Tsaghkadzor (1,839m), Kecharis, Sevanavank

Itinerary description

Mountain Biking Trail Description
This trail begins in the center of Arzakan village, in the Kotayk province. The road is asphalted here and will lead you to Bjni.
Bjni is famous for its mineral waters and historical monuments. The next village you will reach riding up the road from Bjni, is the town of Hrazdan. Then, riding on the left side of the Hrazdan water reservoir, you will reach the Makravank Church, where you will have an opportunity to get acquainted with its history and architecture. The next community along the trail is Tsaghkadzor town, which is the most famous ski resort in Armenia, and one of the active recreation resorts for both Armenians and tourists alike.
The Tsaghkadzor ropeway has been operating since 1969. You can also visit the Kecharis monastic complex in Tsaghkadzor city. Surrounded with pine forests, the trail will be extremely refreshing. Once again, traversing Hrazdan town from the east you will reach Sevan town. The road is paved here. The final stop of the trail will be Lake Sevan and Sevanavank at the top of the Sevan Peninsula.

Monuments description
Makravank (IX-XIII centuries) is located in the Makravan district of Hrazdan city, Kotayk province. The 13th-century church dedicated to Surb Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God) is a domed hall type structure with a pair of wall pylons and two-storey chapels on its western side. Numerous khachkars (cross-stones) encircle the church. There is a nave church to the south and a small cemetery with fretted cross-stones on the east side of the Monastery.

The Hrazdan Water Reservoir is found on the Hrazdan River, in the town of Hrazdan. It was developed in 1953. The reservoir has an area of 1.7 sq. km and a capacity of 5.6 million cubic m, and is fed by the Hrazdan and Marmarik rivers. The maximum depth is 14.5m. The reservoir freezes during the winter.

Sevanavank is located on the Sevan Peninsula (which was formerly an island). It was founded by Grigor Lusavorich in 305.
The island was fortified in the Bronze Age, with a pagan temple. In the 9th century, Sevan was the stronghold of the princes of Syunik. In 874, Princess Mariam (the daughter of King Ashot Bagratuni, and the wife of the Syunik Vasak Gabur Prince) founded two churches – the Apostolic (small) and Astvatsatsin (Virgin Mary). The construction records were written in 874 and have been preserved on the eastern tower of the Apostolic church.
The Astvatsatsin Church (Holy Mother of God) also has a three circular base setup. There was a vestibule on the western side, which was one of the oldest recorded (existed til 1930). Wooden sculptured capitals decorated the vestibule pillars, which are now kept in the State Museum of History of Armenia and the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg. It is assumed that the capitals were brought from some palace. These are valuable samples of Armenian medieval wood art. Some domed church remains have been preserved on the top of the church.
There are numerous khachkars (cross-stones) in the territory of the monastic complex. In 1956-1957, the churches were repaired.

Lake Sevan is situated at an altitude of 1,900m above sea level. Its length is 78km and the maximum width is 56km. The lake itself is 1,260 sq. km and is the largest body of water in Armenia and the Caucasus region. The average depth is 26.8m, the deepest place is Pokr (Small) Sevan- 83m. The volume of the water is 32.92 billion cubic m.
The Lake is cut into two parts by the Shorzha underwater dam - Mets (Big) Sevan (with an average depth of 37.7m) and Pokr (Small) Sevan (50.9m). In summer, the surface water temperature reaches 21 degrees and it rarely freezes in winter.
Sevan is fed by 28 rivers and streams. Among them is the Gavaraget, Argichin, Masrik, and Dzknaget, but only the River Hrazdan outflows from Sevan. Sevan Lake is home to endemic fish, such as the Barbus goktschaicus, Varicorhinus capoeta sevangi, and Salmo ischchan. The Salmo ischchan has also been taken to Central Asia, where it has perfectly adapted to the climatic conditions there.
Whitefish were brought to Sevan from the Ladoga and Chud lakes of Russia in 1924, and are now being breeding productively and have gained industrial importance. Sevan National Park was founded in the basin of Sevan. It has four stocks and ten reserves. The lake is considered to be an important breeding center for gulls, the number of which is between 4,000-5,000 pairs.
The basin of Sevan has been explored by hundreds of scientists and travelers. However, there was never a hint of the existence of hidden historical monuments under the lake. This secret was recently revealed, when the water level decreased a little. 3,000-5,000-year-old ruins of castles and dwellings, and a large number of tombs were found.

Flora
Kotayk and Gegharkunik are mountainous provinces, and are located 900-3,597m above sea level. The provinces are rich in a variety of plants and shrubs, with forested vegetation in some spots, as well as coniferous forests. In the territory of this trail, there are species of flowers and plants widely used in both apiculture and phytotherapy. Here we can come across nettle, plantain, white bryony, chamomile, clover, flax, valerian, oregano, and more. There are also such tea herbs as thyme and mint.

Fauna
There are various animals on the lowest slopes of Tsaghkadzor, in Kotayk province. There are numerous reptiles here, especially the poisonous Gurza (poisonous snake), a lizard-like snake, during the summer times. Foxes, weasels, deer and rabbits are very common here; rarely, you may see a marten, bear, wolf or a badger. Endemic fish live in Sevan Lake, such as the Barbus goktschaicus, Varicorhinus capoeta sevangi, and Salmo ischchan (trout).

Safety and Security
In all the above-mentioned communities and surrounding areas, all three networks operating in Armenia are always available. In case of emergency, call 911, service available throughout Armenia.

Technical parameters
Best period: April -October.
Distance: 43km from Yerevan
Duration: 48 minutes
Biking trail length: 58.5km.
Ride duration: 6.5-7 hours.
Altitude from sea level: 1,542-1,918m
100% of the road is paved.
The best drink to have on hand is bottled water.

How to Reach the Trail
To reach the above-mentioned biking trail you should get to Arzakan village. It is most convenient to travel by taxi. Taxi services are quite affordable throughout Armenia. We recommend taking a cab with a taximeter.

Waypoints

PictographWaypoint Altitude 4,801 ft

001 START

PictographWaypoint Altitude 5,849 ft

002 MAQRAVANQ MONASTERY

PictographWaypoint Altitude 6,245 ft

003 FINISH

Comments

    You can or this trail