In the past week the European Wilderness auditors spent a few days in the newly proposed Wilderness named Chornohora (Black) Mountain, Ukraine. The area is located at the southern slopes of the highest mountain in Ukraine (Hoverla Peak) with an elevation of 2 061 m, in the territory of the Carpathian Biosphere Reserve.
The purpose of this visit was to implement the European Wilderness Quality Quick-Audit and agree on the following steps to join this area to the European Wilderness Network.
Please also read: Carpathian Biosphere Reserve Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary
Area rich in Wilderness
The Carpathian Biosphere Reserve already hosts several Wilderness, WILDRivers and WILDForests, which are part of the European Wilderness Network. This latest trip confirmed that this protected area hosts not only excellent examples of the European famous old-growth beech forest, but on the top of that also a diversity of other habitats such as beech, fir and spruce mixed forest. Additionally, fragments of the natural treeline consist of subalpine spruce and mugo pine forest.
The team of international auditors confirmed the high quality of Wilderness during their field work. The assessment also identified that the Wilderness was significantly larger than was discussed at the beginning of the nomination process. The Wilderness includes interesting examples of old-growth beech forest, which once dominated the European landscape centuries ago, but has been mostly destroyed through logging at present day.
In the following weeks, the International auditors will develop the Chornohora Wilderness Brief and will plan the next steps to finalise the Chornohora Wilderness Quick-Audit.