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In the Alps – DAV Glacier Tour

Already some weeks ago, I took a DAV course on “basic ice & glacier” stuff – The course was on 10th to 13th of July, but as always it took me quite long to upload the pictures and get some blogging ready :)

The glacier as seen from the valleyThe GlacierSo lets get to the point… We left Erlangen at 5 in the morning taking the long ride to Matrei in Tyrol, AT. Two DAV trainers and 6 participants. We left the cars at the Matreier Tauernhaus, just right around the corner from the Felbertauern-Tunnel. After changing clothes we took the whole stuff including climbing iron, ropes and ice axes and enough clothes for 4 days (altogether like 12..15kg) and started walking the valley. Starting point was around 1500m – and the destination was the Neue Prager Hütte at around 3000m… Waling up there in the glacing sun took us about 4.5 hours… Very exhausting – I thought I was gonna fall apart. But walking up there rewards you with an impressing landscape and a very quiet piece of nature.

PanoramaThe hut itself is quite nice – but gonna renovated next year. Neue Prager HütteAfter getting some food (quite good) we digged into some theory and got to bed quite early being exhausted from the long walk. Breakfast took part at 7.30 in the morning, so we were out on the glacier at around 8.30. Starting with some basic training on how to stop sliding at steep snow/ice we continued the day with training on walking with climbing iron and how to use an ice axe to support walking. Jumping over gaps with climbing iron and climbing with them in steeper parts continued the training. Steep slopeThe weather was…. absolutely great. Sunny, few clouds and quite warm – So most of the crew got a pretty intense sunburn. Walking up and down the glacier is really exhausting, so we quit around 17oo – but mainly because a thunderstorm was gonna arise. Instantly as we reached the hut, the rain started. Having a great dinner with Kaiserschmarrn and a Tyrolian Ham&Cheese Plate I fell into bed at 22h and slept instantly.

Climbing upFor the next morning it was planned to climb the Grossvenediger Peak with around 3666m – We decided to start at 5pm, but at this time it was raining like the end of days, so we slept some longer til 8 and started then after breakfast to reach the peak, which took us like 4 hours. The last part took forever with storm, snow and step parts… Thomas in the IceBut when we reached the peak, we got some sun! After a short rest we virtually ran down the glacier and reached it after about 2h before another thunderstorm started… and it continued raining/snowing the whole night til Sunday. On Sunday we climbed down the hill in the rain and storm being completely soaked when we reached the cars – And it was a great amusement for the people sitting and eating at the Matreier Tauernhaus to see us “stripping” and changing the clothes in a bus-stop-booth.

So: Very good and interesting course! Very exhausting, but it made “hungry” for more tours in the Alps!

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