Przełęcz Karkonoska

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Przełęcz Karkonoska (literally the Karkonosze Pass) is a mountain pass in the central Karkonosze Mountains on the Polish-Czech border. At 1,198 m (3,930 ft), it is the lowest point of the main ridge of the Karkonosze and, despite lying on the Polish-Czech border, Przełęcz Karkonoska, the Polish name, has no Czech equivalent. In the Czech Republic, the area is usually referred to by the Špindlerova bouda (Špindler's Hut), a mountain hut located there. Another chalet, situated on the Polish side of the border, is called Odrodzenie.


The pass is accessible by a road either from Špindlerův Mlýn, served by bus, or from Poland. The Polish road is said to be one the steepest roads in Poland with the average inclination 7.2%, reaching 24% at maximum. Although road quality on the Polish side is relatively poor, the pass is much sought after by mountain bikers. The pass is a hub of hiking trails, including the Polish-Czech Friendship Trail.


During World War II, the area was incorporated into Nazi Germany as part of the Sudetes. At that time, the Nazis held the allied prisoners in Špindlerova bouda. On the other hand, the Silesian (today Polish) mountain hut, was confiscated by Nazis as a property of a Jew and converted into a boarding house for Hitlerjugend members, and later into a hotel for Nazi officers.
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