Cell phone service (via Beeline, VivaCell-Mts and Ucom) is usually available in the areas between Lusagyugh village, the forest, churches, and the monuments. 911 emergency services operate throughout Armenia in case of any accidents. Be sure to bring bottled water!
Features: Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
This trail takes runners to several historic sites. The first site on on the trail is the Mkhei monastery which dates back to pagan times, and once served as an inn for travelers. Further down the trail is the Tukh Manuk shrine, which was once dedicated to the sun god Mihr, but is now a Christian monastery. Tukh Manuk is one of the rare places in Armenia where one can spot “equal-wing” cross stones.
Several different mountain ranges can be seen along the trail including the impressive Aragats mountain on the west, and the Tsaghkunyats mountains on the east. Beyond the pagan temples and the silk road, the trail leads to Fort Aver, which is almost completely in ruins. The trail then passes through pine and birch groves, as well as wild plum, pear, and apple trees before connecting to a road that will bring runners back to the town of Lusagyugh.
Flora & Fauna
Flora: The area is full of yellow dandelions, chamomile, blue forget-me-nots, colorful violets, and blossoming thorn plants. Edible herbs including sickleweed, nettle, and Chaerophyllum also grow here.
Those who love mushrooms can bring small knives and gather them during the run, between April and June. It is necessary to show the mushrooms to the locals to be sure they are not poisonous. There are 5,000 hectares of forest, where oak, maple, and birch trees, as well as pine groves, apples and pear trees grow.
Fauna: Vipers, adders, and lizards can be found in the beautiful meadows, cornfields, and the slopes leading to the summit. There are frogs in the swampy areas. The forests are home to many animals, including brown bears, hares, wolves, and foxes.