Benvenuti in Italia!

Today Anthony and I crossed the border into Italy. So far, there’s not much of a culture shock. In fact, my current view is of a very un Italian Apfelstrüdel. This is because we’re in the autonomous region of Süd Tirol, which used to belong to the Austrian-Hungarian empire but changed hands in WWI. The strüdel is pretty good. Maybe I’ll order another one.

Back to the hiking. The weather in the Tuxertaler Alpen has been pretty rough. Low visibility, intermittent rain and a strong wind dominated the first few days after crossing the Inn valley. Instead of roughing it Anthony and I decided to stay with Alex, Jenny and Elena in the huts. I guess we’re the kind of people that only rough it when conditions are not quite rough.

Clouds in the Tuxertaler Alpen along the Dreamway
Clouds in the Tuxertaler Alpen

Yesterday we finally woke up to a clear sky, just in time to admire the full blown glory of the Hintertux ski-resort. Imagine an entire mountain range being bulldozed and defaced with skilifts and skislopes. By the time we crossed the slopes and started the climb towards the Friesenberg Scharte the day was heating up and going up to the pass became a sweaty endeavor. The hot sun burning overhead, I quickly settled in a rhytm: step, deap breath, drip, step. High above us a cable car whizzed tourists all the way up to the Hintertuxer glacier. Lazy sods. The views from the Scharte were amazing though, definitely worth the effort. Coming down the steep slopes was also quite easy, especially because of the prospect of Kaiserschmarn at the Friesenberg Haus! After the Kaiserschmarn we hiked some ways further before Anthony and I decided to camp at a small abandoned hunterslodge with epic views over the dammed lake in the valley and the glacier on the Grosser Moeseler (3480 meter) beyond.

Glaciers in the Zillertaler Alpen along the Dreamway
Glaciers from the Friesenberg Scharte. The Grosser Moeseler is to the right
Biviying at a hunters lodge along the Dreamway
Anthony makes his morning coffee after an amazing bivy

Today was an easy day across the Pfitscherjoch (the main watershed in the Alps) into Italy with some some epic valley views and views of the Hochfeiler (3510 meter) ending at the pension with the aforementioned apfelstrüdel. Life right now is pretty good and I’m really looking forward to the Dolomites. On to the next saga!

Crossing the Pfitscherjoch into Italy
Anthony is happy to enter Italy!

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