At the end of January we took ourselves off for two weeks of winter walking in the Austrian Alps. There are two ways you can go walking in the deep snow at this time of the year, walking on groomed trails or snowshoe walking. As I have been having problems with my heel and had been laid up for six weeks we left the snowshoes behind. It’s worth taking some micro spikes in case there are several sunny days without further snow, as the freeze thaw cycles can leave the groomed surfaces icy. We did not have this problem this time but have needed spikes in the past.
Our first week was in Leutasch 6k from Seefeld in Tirol. To get there we flew to Munich from Manchester then got the train to Seefeld. Details of our excellent apartment can be found at he end of the post.
Our first walk was on the Sunday. The clouds were quite low and as I wanted to build things up gradually we opted for a short walk, getting the bus to Klamm and walking back. The map can be viewed on Social Hiking here
The following morning the weather had improved, I grabbed the camera and took some pictures near the apartment, one of which, below, turned out to be by far my most viewed photo on Flickr with over 20,000 views. Click on the photo be be taken to the higher resolution image on Flickr.
So as the weather was good there was no excuse not to get going. We decided to get the bus to just passed Klamm and to climb up to Rauthutte for great views across Leutasch and of course refreshments. The map on Social Hiking can be found here
The following day we had low clouds so we went off to Seefeld in Tirol for the day. The forecast was for snow overnight and lots of it, with sun in the morning. So the alarm was set so that I could get up early and in position with my camera and tripod to try and get some good photos. Multiple layers were put on and I fought my way up the steps from our apartment, we had had at least a foot of snow! I think it was worth it and I hope you do to when you see the photos. All are on Flickr so clicking on any photo will take you to a higher resolution image.
After such a fine start to the day we set off for the bus to Klamm. We wondered how late it would be, a foot of snow back home in a small village would have probably meant no bus at all. It was late nearly ten minutes late, pretty impressive. Our walk was from Klamm up the Gaistal valley where the groomed trail ends in a hut/restaurant…perfect for lunch 🙂 The map of our route can be found on Social Hiking here
The following day my heel was hurting so I decided to take the day off, Sian had a walk up to Hammermoos
The good news for our final day in Leutasch was that my heel felt better so we decided to walk up to Katzenkapfhutte a hut/restaurant at the top of Leutasch’s ski slope. Lunch there, as it was on about half the days on the holiday, was a large bowl of Goulash Soup! The map of our route can be found on Social Hiking here
At the start I promised to tell you some more about the excellent apartment that we stayed in. Its called Happy Mountains and there web site is here and our apartment on TripAdvisor is here. Run by Emily and Steve who are extremely helpful. This is our second visit which says a lot and we will in a few years time go back in summer.
Leutasch is in winter primarily a cross country skiing “resort” although in reality its a nice village. You can see what its like on this excellent webcam. For 12€ you can get free unlimited bus travel across the area for a week.
Last year we stayed in March. We had more sun but less snow. Below are a few photos from then. Next we moved on to Pertisau the other side of Innsbruck, more about that in part 2.