Underground Adventures in Geopark Karavanke
Lead mining under the mountain Peca began already in Roman times, the written records show, that from 1665 until the end of the previous century, when the mine was finally closed down, 900 km of tunnels were dug under the mountains of Koroška region. Today Tourism Mine and Museum Podzemlje Pece is one of the main attractions of Geopark Karavanke (member of UNESCO GLOBAL GEOPARKS ) and the place for unique underground adventures.
People usually seek mountain biking enjoyment in the mountains, but what we have found is the passage through the mountains, along our abandoned and mysterious tunnels, in the mine no longer in use under the Peca mountain. Majority of tunnels were dug out in the solid rock. The ore and the waste material were transported from the mine by special cars along transportation tracks. Nowadays, this unique, more than five kilometres long cycling route runs through such bike tunnels.
What we offer is a guided cycling tour, more than 5 km long, along a path, illuminated by head- lamps warn on helmets, from one valley to another, where you can enjoy a safe, extraordinary and unforgettable adventure.
The starting point for this adventure is the Mining museum in Mežica (500 metres above sea level), where the guide with the necessary equipment will be waiting for you. From there you will be shuttled 8 kilometres with van to the mine entrance Igrčevo (643 metres above sea level) near Črna na Koroškem.
The cycling path runs along safe tunnels and it rises for only fifteen metres, but the potholes and bumps which remained from the removed tracks do not offer smooth cycling. The guide will stop on some interpretations points and explain you about mining history. The mine exit is in another valley, (Breg near Mežica), from where you will descend along a two km long road back to The Mining Museum where about 2 hours long adventure will be finished.
More than half of Mežica mine tunnels, from 12 to 20th level are due to closure of water pumps now flooded and here our adventure begins. Peddling through tunnels where mining trains were pulling the ore wagons, discovering the underground lake in once leaded rock and discovering the labyrinth of tunnels while peddling in fresh drinking mountain water.
Summer, fall, winter, spring, rain, snow, it doesn’t matter our adventure begins at the Mining museum in Mežica, as miners once were, we are now seated in old mining train and driven in to the core of mountain Peca. After about 15 minutes the train stops and it’s time for new adventure. From 8th level to 12 level we need to overcome around 500 stairs to reach the water. Changing to neoprene boots and safety west we are ready to jump in to the water. Peddling for about an hour in the labyrinth of tunnels, in total silence and darkness gives us the feeling of being lost in time. Then we return through the maze of tunnels and chambers to the 8th level where the train awaits to take us back to the surface.