The Musala Lakes
The Musala Lakes are located in the Rila Mountains beneath Mount Musala (2925 meters), the Balkan’s highest peak.
The Musala Lakes are part of Rila National Park, declared a protected area on February 24, 1992. In the Rila Range, there are more than 120 permanent glacial lakes and roughly 30 that are seasonal.
Musala’s Seven Lakes are situated on four cirque terraces. The highest of these is Icy Lake (Ledeno Ezero), which as its name implies is fed by glacier melt. The whole year round this lake is covered with ice that only partly thaws for four months of the year, from July to November. To the south of this lake rises the northern ascent to Musala peak. Glacier Lake is the deepest of the seven Musala lakes. Its water flows into the second and third lakes beneath it on the second cirque terrace. The third Musala lake, Alekovo, is considered by tourists to be the most beautiful of the seven. There is only one lake on the third cirque terrace, beneath Irechek Peak (2,852 meters). This is Lake Karakeshevo, the fifth of Musala’s seven. Near this lake on the bank facing the sixth lake stands the Musala Shelter. Somewhat farther down is the seventh lake. The sixth and seventh Musala lakes feed the river Bistritsa.
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