Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Duerrenstein, Austria

Bernhard and I have finally come back home again - if only for Christmas and New Year and to work a little from home.
We experience a quite unusual warm late December. I mean: we are really used to green Christmas by now, but this year beats it all: we had 10 to 12 degrees Celsius in 2000 meters! That is really not the usual green Christmas any more. A mountain that is on our to-do list for a long, long time is Duerrenstein near Lunz/See, close to home. The thing with this mountain is that it's not really spectacular. It's beautiful up there, it's one of the highest mountains in the area and it's alpine, tree free. But for summer, this is not the hike I'm really into... in summer, I usually aim for higher mountain peaks, glaciers, climbing... So we always planned a winter tour. Two times we tried to go up there, set up a wintry snowy bivouac somewhere only to have rain or snow or fog on the summit day - so we decided to turn around.

But this time, we, instead of getting up there and setting up a bivouac for a night before hiking to the summit, went to the summit first and then set up a bivouac. That really did the trick. And the warm winter also made it very pleasant up there, with higher temperatures in higher elevations than in the valley below. I also have a brand-new flashlight I brought with me, so that was a perfect trip to do some experimental landscape-flashlight photography.