FORESTIA ROUTES Julian Hrdina

Rappenalptal Valley _ Austria

47°33’35.86‘‘N, 10°26’43.84‘‘E – Rappenalptal Valley (Austria)
Starting Point: Birgsau
Difficulty level: Difficult

Day 1

We started our hike at the beginning of the Rappenalptal, a gorgeus mountain valley located south of Oberstdorf which is itself the most southern village in Germany. Planned for two days the Mindelheimer Hütte, a mountain cabin high up at the end of the valley and quite near to the Austrian border appeard as a perfekt spot to spend the night.

But first we had the make it there until sunset and so we started our hike in the small town of Birgsau. Soon we entered the forest and made our way up a very steep and rocky path. Altough we had to pay full attention to the difficult but still wonderful trail it didn´t stop us from enjoying the absolutley beautiful surrounding wildlife. After leaving the forest we wandered on a small path surrounded by deep green grass with fields of colourful mountain flowers and high peaks hidden behind some grey clouds. The mood was simply awesome and we forgot about all the ascents difficulties.

We arrived around three hours after starting in Birgsau at Lake Guggesee, just in time for a decent lunch break. We sat ourselves down on a big rock right next to the shore and enjoyed our first delicious Forestia meal really comfortable without bringing extra cookware. While waiting for the meal to simmer a herd of cows stumbled across the corner to enjoy some delicious green and mellow grass. We just finished eating when suddenly heavy rain started to pour down so we hurried up getting our stuff together to continue our hike and not to get completely soaked by the rain. Ironically it stopped raining just at the moment we set off.

Continuously we ascended higher and higher but the trails most difficult part was already over and we enjoyed the following section with destination Mindelheimer Hütte. It turned out as a gorgeous varied path with some wonderful scenic views at the opposite side of the valley and its no less epic mountain range. Meanwhile more and more clouds appeared, the fog began to roll in and even a little rain started to fall down. But the worse the weather went the bigger the smiles in our faces were. We love this kind of weather, especially when were in the mountains.

We reached the Mindelheimer Hütte around 6 p.m. and enjoyed a fabulous dinner after taking an ice-cold shower outdoors with water straight out of the mountain. The rain just stopped after we finished eating so we went outside getting some good shots. Happy, content but really tired we went straight to bed afterwards to be fit enough for the next day’s hike.

 

Day 2

The next morning we went up at 4:30 a.m. long before the other guests and descended a few meters till we found a perfect spot to watch the sunrise while taking a delicious breakfast with some good salami, tasty bread and some freshly brewed, hot tea (one of the best things you can have in early mornings high up in the mountains). When the sun appeared at last between the distant peaks warm rays came upon our freezing bodies and a golden light began to fill up the whole valley. We just sat there and watched, amazed by the beauty of nature. Then we packed our stuff and continued walking.

We followed a steep trail down along a small creek where we filled up our water resources and washed ourselves. After this we went straight down to the beginning of the Schrofenpass, a mountain pass guiding from Germany to Austria and entered the other side of the valley on this way. Up this pass we had a lot of great views but also had to pay much attention on the exposed path which excuses no missteps. Before we sided we reached the Salzbücheljoch, an absolutely gorgeous place with big fields of flowers interspersed with great white rocks and only a tiny path between them, one of the most beautiful areas I know so far. Slowly the day passed on to its noon and we got hungry, so we went on with our hike to reach Lake Rappensee, an insane mountain lake located right between huge rocky peaks and ultra green meadows, where we planned to have our lunchbreak.

We arrived there around 1 p.m., 6 hours after we left our breakfast spot and now on the complete other side of the valley from where we started. We were really happy to have some very good (and warm!) food with us, even more so effortless in preparing and so we enjoyed once more a delicious Forestia Meal at the shores of Lake Rappensee. Afterwards we took a quick bath and layed down in the grass to watch the clouds going by. We could have stayed there for hours but more and more clouds appeared and it became cold, so we packed our stuff for the last time and went straight down in the valley to the small village of Birgsau where we started just one day ago. We felt exhausted and tired but the smile did not leave our face for days.

Credits:

Who am I?

I´m a 20-year-old musician from Sonthofen, Bavaria with a big love for nature and hiking. That´s all. Oh, wait, I also love to photograph and share my work on Instagram @julixaver. And the lovely guy on the pictures is one of my best friends, Mr. Fabian Marquardt, an insane guy and also on Instagram @fabimarkwart.

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