We had another lovely hike today. We decided in the morning to go to Riesachsee, cause the weather forcast promised only clouds for today, so we found it fitting for a mountain trip. There is a gorge here called Höll, and a river through it, so we could expect constant waterfalls.
So we arrived to the bottom of the gorge (parking is 9 euro, 6 with Sommercard), and immediatelly started our hike up the gorge. We already checked, that there is Riesachsee at the top of the gorge, where we definitely want to go as well. Our host recommended, that if we want to walk more, then we can pass by the lake and go up to Preintalerhütte. We did so, and we decided to go on till the lakes. Boards said that the lakes are one hour from there. At the first Sonnertagkarsee in the end we decided to continue to the upper one too, because it was not far, and anyway we will be faster on the way down.
On the way down we went through the gorge path again cause it was shorter, even though it was narrow, so normally it wouldn’t be pleasant to pass by other people coming the other direction, but we were late enough to not expect traffic. In the end we didn’t meet anyone. In the end we arrived back to the car at 7:20.
We did alltogether 19 km, with 1500 m up and down. Tomorrow we will take it easy 🙂
Today the weather was not nice, so we decided to change a bit the daily programs and we went to visit the biggest icecave of the world in Werfen.
From the parking lot you need to walk 20 minutes to the cable car, which takes you up, and then another 20 minutes till the entrance. The tour is around 70 minutes in the cave in english and german.
Eisriesenwelt is actually a huge cave formed in Tethys ocean back in time. It moved to the north, and up thanks to tectonic activity.
The cave system itself is 42 km long, but the icy part is 1 km long from the entrance. The reason of the ice formation is the wind. It blows through this part of the cave, brings in some humidity with itself, and ice is done. The speed of the wind can reach 140 km/h.
The first explorer found the cave in 1879. He did not get far, cause close to the entrance (200 m) a huge ice wall stopped him. The second explorer in 1912 arrived with ice axe, and he made stairs into the ice, and climbed over this ice wall and discovered that the cave doesn’t end there.
Interestingly, the guided tours today are following the early habits. We went in with karbid lights, and our guide had some magnesium strips for a bit more light, just like the first explorers. It made the whole trip very special. The ice formations are amazing, and huge. There is another wall, where you can nicely see the layers of the ice formed in different years, just like in the case of tree year rings. The formations are changing year to year, due to the new layer of ice coming in with the wind.
After the cave tour we went back to Schladming, and had a sightseeing before dinner.
We are staying now for 4 nights at the same place, and we have a lovely host. In the morning after breakfast she recommended us a trip to Dachstein glacier, which is the main attraction around here. We had one extra day without program till now, so we accepted it. Especially because it was a trip to high mountains, and the upcoming days supposed to be worse (rainy).
We got a summer card, which gave us a free ride to the Dachstein cabel car, and also on the cable car. The only thing is that you need to make a reservation on the bus in advance, but our host did that for us. She is really great.
So we arrived up to the glacier, where there is a sky walk, and an amazing ice cave with sculptures. Our host recommended that if we want to walk, we can take a walk down in the forest from the bottom of the cable car. But after we came out from the ice palace, we saw that you can walk a bit on the sky slope, so we walked down, and then we saw, that people are hiking to the nearby mountain. So we did as well. It’s name is Hoher Gjaidstein (2794 m), and actually it was the second peak from where we started, but it was hidden behind the first peak. There was also quite a few via ferrata, so I was very happy.
It was only 4 kms, but we went up and down, through Kleiner Gjaidstein. After we arrived back to Hunerkogel (top of the cable car), we took the vehicle down, and had a tea and salad. We decided to walk down, because the weather looked okay, though weather forecast said it will start to rain around 4 oclock. It was a nice forest walk. Then we went for dinner by car, and rain started to fall around 7 in the end, when we were already on our way back to the accomodation.
Today we planned a hike around Grossglockner. We arrived by car to Kaiser Franz Josef Hütte. Our chosen path was through the tunnel from there, but unfortunatelly it was closed (only for trained people). Still we could go till the end of the tunnels (up to 2400 m) and we got closer to Grossglockner and Johannisberg.
We went back to the Hütte through the tunnel, and continued to Panoramaweg, which is another short route going up to a restaurant. On the way there we saw marmots ♡ I was very sad after our Switzerland trip, that my camera did not save any picture to its SD card, and I had no picture of the marmots there. Here it was even better. There was a lady there, giving carrot to a marmot, and she got bored and gave us her last two carrots, so I could also give him one. We made amazing pictures. Then another marmot came and they started to fight for that carrot.
From the restaurant we went back again to the Hütte and we decided to go down to the glacier lakes under the Hütte and Grossglockner. We were chilling half an hour next to the lake on the sun, and then returned to the car, and continued our way to Schladming to eat something, and then to Lehen to our accomodation. On the way we saw some bisons in a reservat next to the road so we stopped for some picture.
Today we arrived to Austria for our one week holiday. We left Budapest yesterday and slept over in Sezana, at Matej’s parents.
We left from Sezana at 11 oclock and first we went to visit Burg Hochosterwitz, which is a fascinating, huge castle complex on a hill in Launsdorf.
We continued our way to Flattach, where we stopped for an amazing hike and adventure through Raggaschlucht. In the end you can see this waterfall. It was pretty steep (especially the way down), but stairs are built (which are slippery). But the view is fascinating and totally worth it! The canyon is narrow, the walls around you are high, and the water in the deep is super fast.
After this it was end of the day, so we drove to our accomodation to Witschdorf.