I've been up a few mountains lately. (Part 1)
The weekend after I got back from South Africa we woke up at 3am on a Sunday morning (!) to walk up Mörzelspitze to watch the sunrise, something I haven't done since living in Vorarlberg. It was very cold, very dark and there was a lot more snow than expected™ (this has somewhat become a catch phrase in my first 3 months here). Probably because of these things we missed the right path to Mörzelspitze and ended up on another slightly smaller peak. Nonetheless, it was a beautiful morning watching the sun rise over the mountains behind us and Lake Constance in front of us. Shoutout to the friends we saw walking between clubs, beer in hand, who we picked up on the way and ended up walking all the way to the top with us.
When everybody seems to be busy I can count on my procrastinating gym-junkie Slovakian friends to join me for a sunny mid-week afternoon hike. We had planned to just go up an old favourite waterfall hike but can't say no to a challenge and afterwards decided to also include Staufen peak.
It was lovely weather two weeks ago (it seems like winter again now) and a local suggested Winterstaude to be a nice day hike. We started from Bezau in the Bregenzerwald, went up Niedere and from there along the ridge to Winterstaude peak. Coming back, we thought we'd take the shorter, more challenging way down. Again, there was more snow than expected™ and we couldn't see any trace of a path (or tracks for that matter) and we ended up scrambling down the steepest face of the mountain down to Schetteregg ski area, with a lot of sun burn as a souvenir.
On Sunday I thought I'd give Mörzelspitze another go as I've since aquired a hiking map of the area. ...I ended up guiding our group of 6 in the wrong direction from the start but quickly decided that we'd go up Hoher Freschen instead, as Stefan was keen as always to go up a peak over 2000m . I'd been up there two years ago, what could go wrong? Answer: More Snow Than Expected™. It's a really amazing hike, unfortunately there was a lot of fog on Sunday which blocked the view but also looked really beautiful. For this hike we finally went above the tree line and had to climb/ balance along some tricky ridges, made even harder by a lot of fresh snow. In hindsight it was probably a little dangerous to do considering the conditions, but morale was high throughout the day and no one got into any trouble. Once on the peak, we decided to skip the risky ridge climb down and hike through the snow to skiing area Laterns instead.
I love being here and having such beautiful places so easily accessible. I'm thankful for the wonderful friends who follow my 'routes' despite serious doubts and whose company make hiking that much more enjoyable. I've also done a few trips and amazing bike rides recently, will write about those soon. (or not... it always seems to be so long between blog posts despite good intentions. I also upload photos quite regularly on Instagram)