La Om, also known as Piscul Baciului, is the highest peak in Piatra Craiului mountains in Romania, having an altitude of 2238 m or 7343 ft. It can be reached from all sides of the massif but we decided to choose the easiest way, starting from the village of Pestera.
Taking advantage of the optimistic weather forecast, we woke up very early, at about 5:30 a.m., to have the so necessary breakfast before the hike. After fueling the cars, we continued to Bran and began climbing on a twisting road towards the village of Pestera. It was around 7 a.m. and we were surprised to see that we were the first two cars there.
We quickly took our gear and began our hike through the quiet village. From time to time, the eerie silence was interrupted by some cows or sheep happy to see the sunshine again.
Once we arrived near Joaca Saddle (Saua Joaca), we realized how massive Piatra Craiului mountains were.
The morning light made them even more impressive.
After a quick descent to the place called La Table (a junction of more trails), we arrived at a water spring, filled our bottles and began climbing.
The first 40 minutes were easy, through the forest, where we hoped to see some bears, until we reached Grind refuge.
A hard climb was awaiting and the steep slopes of Piatra Craiului mountains were beginning to be intimidating. We left the meadow, passing near the last patches of trees and began climbing… again.
It was easy at the beginning, until we reached the scree sections of the climb, which was demanding, especially because of the scorching sun.
Finally, we reached the peak. We were the second group climbing on that route, the first one was a couple who overtook us earlier, near the Grind refuge.
The views were spectacular and we enjoyed every second up there. Flocks of people started arriving and after a snack, we decided to leave the peak and descend back on the same route. We encountered tens of hikers, some well prepared, some wearing sneakers or sandals.
Hiking there without a guide and a proper gear is very risky. We always recommend hiking with a guide if you’re trying to conquer difficult mountains, like Piatra Craiului. Take a look at our hiking tours in Romania, maybe you like one.
The descent was easier than we initially thought, this was mainly thanks to the trekking poles which proved to be handy in situations like this.
We reached the car at about 4:30 p.m. and ended a beautiful day with a nice cold beer back in Brasov.