Thursday, 25 July 2013

Up an anthill** and down a mountain

With the threat of thunderstorms hanging over us as I write this and record temperatures forecast for the coming weekend yesterday was the chosen day for my annual* walk, as I call it, with my friend H. 


The second photo shows the summit we reached (via Hinternaßwald, Reißtalklamm, Naßriegel, and Naßkamm). It's the 1828 meter (5997 ft) Ameißbichl (Anthill) and it lies directly north of the Lurgbauer Hut on the Schnnealpe massif. It was at the said hut that we stopped, some 3 hours into our leisurely walk, for traditional bowls of cheese dumpling soup. 

On the Anthill

We then left the hut and walked to the summit of our Anthill. There we settled down and enjoyed our sandwiches in the sunshine. 

Maybe my wearing my favourite luminous green t-shirt was not such a bright idea for I was soon attacked by an angry bee. 

From our vantage point I was able to make out the distinctive bulk of the Gemeindealpe in the middle distance and looking in another direction the nearby summit of the Rax. I had taken part in a mountain race on the Gemeindealpe only 3 days previously (see post below).

View to the Rax

After our meal we traversed a long narrow ridge resplendent with alpine flowers and numerous anthills to reach our next landmark, the Eisenkogel (1513 mtrs)(4963 ft). As we walked along towards our next place of interest, the Kreuzsattel (1368 mtrs)(4488 ft)  my friend informed me that much of Vienna's water supply lay within the rocks which lay beneath our feet. On one side of the ridge all the land and its resources belonged to the City of Vienna and on the other side of the ridge to the Province of Styria.

 Alpine panorama

We dropped off the ridge at the Kreuzsattel and because of the accumulating clouds we decided to make our way via the Loskogerl path to Hinternaßwald (712 mtrs)(2335 ft) rather than take the path over Groß Sonnleitstein (1639 mtrs)(5377 ft).

This proved to be the correct decision for there was soon a distant rumble of thunder followed after a short while by a torrential downpour which lasted 20 minutes and drenched us almost to the skin before we could reach the Hinternaßwald car park and its bus shelter where we encountered a couple of walkers changing out of their wet clothes.

And then the sun came out.

Ascent and descent: appx 1250 mtrs (4100 ft). Distance: appx 16 kms (10 miles).

*sometimes we walk in the mountains a couple of times a year!
**it turns out that the name of the hill has nothing to do with ants, although there were lots of ants and anthills there, but with the word 'Meiß' which means 'a young forest'. This is also a strange thing because, as can be seen in two of the photos, there are next to no trees on the slope of the hill and none at all on the top.

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