Day 2 - Hike Up the Schafbergspitz - A Wilde Ride In Salzkammergut - May 2022 - CycleBlaze

May 9, 2022

Day 2 - Hike Up the Schafbergspitz

“A flower blossoms for its own joy.” ― O. W.

Rather than jump back onto our bikes today, we had this inspirational idea to go for a hike up to the summit of the Schafberg mountain that looms above both the Wolfgangsee and Monsee. Who else would of thought of doing something like that!

The weather forecast for today, from trusty YR.NO was for mixed sun and cloud in the morning with full cloud cover and a bit of rain starting around 1 pm. With that we set off at about 9 for the ~ 9 km hike (with ~1250 m of elevation gain to the summit at 1755

The first 4 km’s was an easy stroll along very quiet roads to the village of Winkl that straddles the small pass between Monsee and Wolfgangsee. We rode through this village yesterday.

Once past Winkl, the real hike and climb started with 1100 m of elevation to be gained over the next 5 km’s. The conditions for hiking were perfect with the early morning temperatures in the mid teens mostly sunny and no wind.

The 2km’s past Winkl was a steep ascent through forest on rocky and slightly muddy paths. Once we hit the 1300 m elevation we broke out of the forest into open alpine terrain.

The views to the south over the Wolfgangsee were beautiful and to the north, we could see the Schafbergspitz with it’s gasthaus and train station. Yes, there’s a train station right near the summit. A small cog railway was built in 1893 to bring the fine burghers of Vienna to the summit of Schafberg when they were vacationing in the area. The train starts in St Wolfgang, situated about halfway along the north shore of the lake. Our plan was to hike up, train down and then catch the boat ferry back to St Gilgen. I think a few other folks may have done this before too!

We reached the summit after a little under 3 hours of hiking time at almost exactly 1 pm. Also at almost exactly 1 pm, as predicted by the Clever Norwegian weather people, clouds rolled in to more or less obscure any views from the summit. Views to the north, the direction we could not see while climbing, were particularly affected!

No problem, it was a great hike, we had a celebratory beer at the summit and then had an interesting ride down on the cog train and a very pleasant boat ride back to St Gilgen. All in, a great day out. I’ll let the pic’s fill in the blanks.

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Ready for the daily commute to school
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Lovely view of the Wolgangsee over the rooftops of lakeside Gasthaus’s.
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Very Bavarian-like totem poles outside the villages in these parts. This one is at Winkl. They were used to ‘advertise’ what services and trades were available in villages
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The up-track leaving Winkl. Most sections were steeper and narrower than this
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Very colourful beetle on the trail. He was pretty big too, about 2 cm long
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Bill ShaneyfeltI think I found an ID. Golden Ground Beetle (Carabus auronitens).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carabus_auronitens
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1 month ago
Lyle McLeodThanks Bill ! He was very content just to hang out and let us takes pictures
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1 month ago
We broke out of the trees and into open alpine terrain. The track was very well defined and maintained up to here. Our objective is starting to come into plain sight!
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An hour and ~450 m to go!
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As this is a very Germanic culture …. Here’s the long list of ‘trail rules’. I can see that the second rule (in red) is basically “keep your dog on a leash”. The rest of them???? We’ll …. I’ve heard it said from a well known Irish poet “ Life is to short to learn German - O.W.”
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Ukrainian themed wildflowers
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Bill ShaneyfeltBlue flowers are gentian. Not enough detail to tell the yellow ones.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gentiana
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1 month ago
Stunning views to the south west towards Salzburg and the Gastein mountains
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More of the same …looking SW
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Nearing the summit …and cumulus clouds building in the east!
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Almost there!
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We could have taken the easy way up! Cog train tracks
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Looking south with Strobl on the south shore of Wolfgangsee. The Dachstein mountains are on the south horizon
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Cog train on the way down … that will be us in a few hours
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Zoom-in shot of the Dachstein range to the south
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The final push to the summit and the amazing views to the north if …..
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At the summit train station. Weather still looking good to the south!
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Finally, the last few steps to the summit of Schafbergspitz!
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And the clouds arrive from the NE at exactly the same time! The railing on the left protects folks from a near vertical 1000 m fall to the mondsee on the north side of the summit.
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Trust us, the views to the north are stupendous. We saw them on the postcards!
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At least we can see the first 50 m or so of cliff face!
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And for a few fleeting seconds we can see a bit more of the drop on the north side
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Wow! Look at that! Just imagine!
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And look at this … cleared right off for the cog rail ride down!
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Waiting for the ferry in St Wolfgang. It was a beautiful afternoon and a lovely place to hang out waiting
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The ferry back to St Gilgen took about 40 minutes with two short stops along the way. A wonderful way to end a great day.
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Back in St Gilgen for another night!
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Cheers from the summit of Schafberspitz!
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Scott AndersonYou took the hike! I was going to ask if it was in the plan but thought it unlikely since you’ve only got a week to work with. Congratulations! Sorry you didn’t get a break with the weather though.
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1 month ago
Lyle McLeodBut of course we did …. We are really working hard to ‘sincerely flatter’ the two of you! We also need to get a couple of tough hikes in. One reason we’re only staying here for a week is that shortly after we get back we are leaving for a multi-day hike in Peru. Over 100km’s at altitudes between 4200 and 5000m! There is no hiking at home yet …. Only skiing! Just got word from folks back in Canmore that 10- 20 cm of snow fell again yesterday! We saw your comment about feeling bad about the good weather you are having in France compared to the rain in Portland. At least they’re not getting snow in May 😳. Very happy we did the hike, great all round day with the hike, the train and the ferry! The fog at the top added Something unique too.
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1 month ago