Jul. 1st, 2012

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Finally sorted out and uploaded (although admittedly still rather indiscriminately) my pictures from last week's hiking tours in Salzburg to flickr. They're really nothing much photography-wise, all credit is due to the sheer gorgeousness of the landscape, but I enjoyed that time so much that my sense of self-critique refuses to cooperate. Hence, picture spam.

My level of fitness, or rather lack thereof, still makes 1.000+ m of hight difference a bit of an exercise in masochism, but I've never been to Salzburg this early in the year, and not only was it still incredibly quiet and peaceful — even on a Sunday I was more or less alone for most of the day and only met a handful of hikers towards the end of the tour —, but it caught me by surprise how much spring still lingers up in the mountains. Above 1.700, 1.800 m there were still plenty of snowfields, and in other places you could still see the pressed-down dried grass where the snow had molten only recently, with the first flowers coming out.

This batch of pictures is from Monday when we had a heatwave and I got up at 4:30ish and started out at 6:15 in the morning to avoid the worst of the heat, up to the Passauer Hütte. (Which I forgot to take a picture of, but you can sorta kinda see on a high resolution version of the tenth picture, where the right edge of the clouds meets the top of the mountain.) The pictures were taken on the way down, so they're in reverse order, snow and rocks to tree-line and flowers...


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Wednesday, up to the Ingolstädter Haus, once again im Frühtau zu Berge starting vey early because it was still very hot and they predicted thunderstorms for the later afternoon. This is essentially only across the valley from Monday's hiking tour — the treeless green space on the mountain in the background of this picture are the alpine meadows on the first picture.

Once again, so, so gorgeous.

This time I took the camera a couple of times on my way up because the morning light was so beautiful...


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These are from last Sunday, although after last week at work it feels so much longer than that. From Mitterlengau up the Schusterkogel, and then along the rim of the valley via Teufelssprung and Hohe Penhab back down again. The mood is very different here, because while the mountains are about the same height, this is slate rather than limestone, so there are alpine meadows right up until 2.000+ m. (Which personally I'm not so very fond of, because cows? Large heavy animals with pointy horns, and not always so peaceful, especially when they're in a herd with their calves. I'd definitely prefer them behind fences. At least it was apparently still too early in the year for them to be all the way up, so most of the hike was blessedly bovine-free...)

This was also the most relaxed tour, because I didn't put any pressure on myself, but let myself stop for taking pictures, breaks, or just to sit down and enjoying the view for a bit, because I knew I had to drive back to Vienna the next day and really, really didn't want to leave. I don't remember having felt so at peace for a long time, although sadly last week killed that mood pretty fast.

Horses, for a change. At least better than cows, although I try to keep a respectful distance too...


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