Gheorgheni region

Lacu Roșu (Gyilkostó)

Lacu Roșu is one of the most beautiful climatic resorts of Romania. The alpine settlementis situated in the valley of the Bicazi Stream, along National Road 12C. It belongs to Gheorgheni, its distance from which is 29 km. Bicaz lies 33 km far and Piatra Neamț 59 km far from it. The development of the resort has become more intensive since 1926. Several villas have been built around the lake. The number of the inhabitants was 102 in 1992, 81 Romanians and 21 Magyars.

The main attraction of the resort is represented by one of the most wonderful lakes of Romania, Lacu Rosu ('Lake Red'), one of the best-known and most visited natural rarities of Szeklerland. The remains of a fir-wood lying under the lake makes it unique. It is even more significant because of another rarity, the Bicazi Pass in its vicinity.

The pictoresque lake forms an organic part of the Hasmasu Mare mountain-range. It is a naturally barricaded lake formed 160 years ago as a result of a rockslide following a strong earthquake. It probably got the name 'Red' because of its ferric oxide content which has conserved the remains of the pine-trees that still stand out of the lake. In sunny weather, the surface of the lake reflects the red limestone rocks of the shores. In the summer of 1838, date by which the lake had been definitely formed, its water-level was 1 m higher and stretched about 1 km longer into the valley of the Hasmas Stream.

Dimensions(data of 1955, by A. Năstase, I. Pișotă) The L-shaped lake is situated at 983 m altitude, its perimeter is 3,090 m, its surface is 12.6 ha. It contains a volume of 680,000 cubic meter, its average depth is 5.4 m, its greatest depth being 10.5 m, its siltated area is of 126,720 square meters, a 10,000 square meter-area being covered by plants. The siltation of the lake is slow but continuous. According to I. Bojoi (1967), in 130 years 480,000 cubic meter sediments were deposited in the lake which resulted in a 40% decrease in volume. The dams built in the valley of the Hasmas and the Rosu streams (in 1960 resp. 1962) have the role of deposing the sediments brought by the overground water. The water temperature reaches 22 C° in summer and it is covered by ice in winter. The main branch of the lake was almost 1,300 m in 1890, nowadays it hardly reaches 950 m. According to Petre Gâștescu limnologist, the lake will have been siltated completely by 2080. The lake is rich in trout and crabs. There is a trout breed in the Licas Stream Valley. The building of the road leading to Lacu Rosu was started in 1912. Its significance is given by its being a scientific, climatic resort and natural conservation area at the same time.

The lake and its close vicinity is an area with pleasant microclimate, favourable to those suffering from nervous exhaustion, insomnia and for convalescent patients. The annual average temperature is about 8 C°, the hottest months being July and August. The weak wind, fresh air, water and waterfalls meet the requirements of sports-likers and holiday-makers. Since the turn of the century, the need for convalescence holidays has made the tourism of this corner of the "Szekler Switzerland" so bustling.