There was no hurry, the forecast was for the weather to improve during the day. We woke to drizzle, which stopped when we set off from Haus Wiesenblick. The cable-car delivered us into a cloud, which kindly dispersed upon our arrival. We had soon rejoined the E5 belvedere path to Rettenbachalm, where we enjoyed timely elevenses. The cloud that had followed us down from there on Thursday now parted before us as we ascended back up the E5 route.
The road up to the Rettenbachferner glacier was free of traffic - closed from 9am until 2pm to allow cyclists complete freedom on the road. Not many cyclists seemed to be taking advantage, but those who were seemed to be enjoying themselves.
After strolling on up to the end of the road, which finished near the chapel pictured (top), at a huge car park occupied by a single vehicle, an alfresco lunch in the sunshine was taken whilst watching a couple of walkers struggle to find the route down from Pitztaler Jöchl. Our final few hundred metres of ascent had succumbed to overnight snow.
Anyway, it didn't produce any difficulties in ascent, and by 2pm we had reached the crux of the E5 route - 2995 metre Pitztaler Jöchl.
We had fine views back into the Ötztal (pictured) despite some distant cloud.
The way ahead, also pictured, was less certain. A slithery path led along an alpine ridge walk at around 3000 metres in fresh snow. We were grateful for a few wires. After reaching a junction on the ridge the difficulties subsided and a lovely mountain path led down to this large alpine hut.
It was only 3pm - a short day.
The place is pretty full, but the cloud is slowly clearing, so our hopes for tomorrow are high.
Gayle and JJ - where we are now seems so far from the hissing of summer lawns that we could be on another planet. We hope you both get some good walks in the sunshine, and sorry JJ, we can't join you tomorrow.
22 July 2012
9km in 5 hours with 1000m ascent
Flower of the Day - Dwarf Eyebright
Itinerary - http://www.topwalks.com/E5%20Route.html
[The phone. Has developed an. Annoying keyboard problem involving the space bar, so typing is. Proving to. Be very time consuming. Future. Entries. May be rather shorter!]
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