Calling on all hiking, alpining, mountaineering, travel and outdoor enthusiasts to join me in indulging in one for the road...not a beer but rather a word of grace, gratitude, resounding applause if you will, to the founding member of the Austrian & German Alpine Association (1869), Franz Senn. He was a lover of his parishioners and mountaineering, which fueled his ascend of a whole lot of 3000 meter summits and then some throughout the Ötztal Alps and his promotion and development of alpinism, mountaineering, sustainable tourism in Tyrol (Stubaital & Ötztal Alps), training of mountain guides and establishing the first climber accommodation. Thanks to him facilities are in place making our visits over extensive distances and glaciated terrain more comfortable.
I read that the Öztal Alps are the most extensive and largest continuous glaciation mountain range in Austria. How exciting!
For me, hiking between glaciers promises to be a beautiful yet the most daring adventure that I've done to date. Regardless of my fear of heights, I miraculously mustered bouts of crazy courage that have allowed me to jump from the highest commercial bungee jumping spot in the world and learn how to fly a glider plane.
Our plan for our four day hike is to cross Saykogel crest, reaching a height of 3574m. Along the way we'll be overnighting at the Breslauer Hütte, Martin-Busch-Hütte and Hochjoch Hospice. Our staring point will be in a beautiful and popular ski spot called Vent, which sits at an altitude of 1890m. Wish me luck and fun and remember to #livelife #lovelife
Day 1: Backpacks strapped, the first leg starts with a gentle dash for the bus. We need to get to the ZOB , pronto!
We are here, with time to spare for a quick tea and bretzel purchase. Today we travel by bus: Munich-Innsbruck-Ötztal-Sölden-Vent.
We are booked on HELLÖ coaches and they are so comfy, clean and the driver is very pleasant (I've found my go to bus). Finally! It's 8am and off we go!
"I've hiked up Ghorepani Poon Hill (Himalayas Range) in Nepal without any preparation so I trust I'll be fine." Now that I've silenced the little voice in my head, I sit back relax and BEHOLD💕🙏🏽
It has been five hours since we left Munich and we are now busing to our starting point in Vent, 3 out of 7 of our group.
We have arrived in Vent and so has the rest of the group. Let the hike begin! We are definitely headed for a great start and hike, it's showering down, the heavens are on our side, no dampened spirit but I can't say the same for our hiking boots. Bless the person who invented raincoats, rain pants and backpack covers. Off we go!
It was tough towards the end of the nearly 1000m climb my friends but I warriored on- made in Africa don't crack. And that my friends is day 1 done and dusted. We 'schnappsed' to our success. Someone give me a Bots flag please, i claim this mountain for the democratic republic 😂!
Day 2: Our hike today is a 'light' one; longer distance but less altitude to it. The landscape is breathtaking, with contrasting shades of green and hews of grey and blue breaking through the clouds. The rush of blood in my ears is dulled out by the river, this is a constant and soothing sound that makes this task easier. All that matters is the rocks, the snow, the sheep, the glaciers, the fauna, the flora, the burrows, the sky, the Alps, the clouds, the rain, the breeze, the crisp air, the flies, the river and the occasional bird that darts across the sky making us stop dead in our tracks. The power of nature both humbling and awe inspiring.
My nose is happy that the whiff of cow and sheep dung makes this haven homelike, Botswana I feel your presence in the alps and the alps I feel/smell Botswana in you.
We have arrived, a little wet because the rain insisted yet again on crashing our party, uninvited! And the sun declined, no reason offered, just a simple no show. Tomorrow is the real test, we ascend to 3360m from 2412m, the plan is to reach the peak of 3457m by Monday.
Day 3: I climbed, I crawled, I fell, I got up again until I reached the summit and then back down again. The view, the little of it I saw was worth every ache. Glacier on my left and another to my right. Being exposed to the elements of nature was beautifully humbling. I had to dig deep and on this journey I walked through another door into a deeper part me, this is why I travel and how I travel, I find me every time.
Ruri go tsamaya ke go bona!