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Thursday, December 27, 2012

How autumn feels like in Franconia

Hill top view from Walberla, with empty glasses already

This is probably the last post for this year, I am running outta time - I am almost off for New Years Eve in New York City :-P But I've got some pics from the open day of schnaps distilleries sourrounding the Walberla, Forchheim. Something I can really recommend, next year, if possible. The weather was perfect, so why not having some foretasts in the distillery or emptying a bottle while hiking across the Walberla? Pretty cool action, without getting too drunk due to the walking tour...

Autumn tree while sunset, near Leutenbach, Bavaria

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Scheduled for years and now done, finally

Pasquale and me at the top of the Gloriette, Schönbrunn Palace

Next week, next action. I was looking for a lift going to Vienna, found one and a few hours later, my good mate Pasquale (known him since I was in Sydney) just picked me up from the metro station. Nothing serious was going on that night, the next morning was starting with a tremendous breakfast on the Naschmarkt, followed by all tourist attractions Vienna has to offer. And the Wiener Schnitzel was not missing on Sunday.

Wiener Schnitzel as big as the plate itself

Monday, December 24, 2012

Using last summer days for a good ride

Karwendelhaus in the left corner, 180° view at almost 1800 m

It was time, the weather forecast was promissing regular temperatures and the basketball season has not started yet. So what to do with a whole weekend full of freetime?

Before downhill riding
Right, gathering all bike relavant things together, squeezing it into the backpack and heading south to the Karwendel, Mittenwald, near the Austrian border. Start: Saturday morning, the typical Karwendel tour was chosen, reaching the Karwendelhaus (1771 m) at lunchtime. Antje and me still in a perfect mood.

Right time and spot for some refreshments and delights. After a while, fit and strengthened again, it was going doin, nice trail, nice pics - but too quick, unfortunately.

The Falkenhaus (1848 m) was awaiting us, the graveled path too steep to ride. Another break was more than deserved before speeding down the harsh trails. The clock stroke 5 already, and it was time for heading back. Easier said than done! Another two mountains were in the way, thus only two possibilities came into consideration.

  1. Crossing those two massive and unexpected mountains - would mean breaking our backs.
  2. Taking a detour of another 30 km.

Falkenhütte shouded grey clouds

It was getting dark already and we were not even on the way up the second mountain. A river carrying freezing cold water needed to be crossed. No bridge, no shallow water. Shit, the only way was just going through it. The feet won't be warm again before getting home. The only things working at that time were front and back lights, motivation and conditions were down. Mittenwald was reached at 9:30 pm, restaurants hardly open. But the sleep was more than tight. ^^

Buckelwiesen near Mittenwald, view to Wetterstein Mountains

The next day was starting with superb weather. The planed route was adapted to make it just as simple as possible. We were following it through the Mittenwald region, Elmau, up to the Wettersteinalpe, and down to Mittenwald, before heading home.

Wettersteinalpe, way up to Schachen