Walking on Thin Ice, a Tirolean Adventure

Untitled by fiolafoley
Untitled, a photo by fiolafoley on Flickr.

Just back from a great weekend in Tirol!

Bad Snow

The snow wasn’t the best, in the morning it was really icey and after noon, slushy. But I enjoyed it anyway. On Friday I did a short 1 hour skin up the small ski piste in front of our hotel and then 90 mins on cross country ski’s, it was my first time and I really enjoyed it! I think I will do some more of that next year.

But Good for…

Then on Saturday we spent most of the day on the slopes which was good fun and I really enjoyed the chance to focus on my technique which is more survival mode these days from all the off-pisting on the tours.

An Extremely Adventurous Morning

Today I headed out on my own in the morning to climb up Seefelder Joch.

I didnt realise just how much of an adventure that was going to be, especially since I had seen so many people walking up on the piste yesterday (apparently “pistentouring” is BIG IN Austria these days, the amount of people I saw walking up the ski piste yesterday was pretty impressive) It was all going ok until I hit any slope with an angle greater than 30 deg. Then the trouble began, as there was absolutely no traction on the snow, which was actually pure ice and I hadn’t brought any ski crampons with me.

Sliding on Ice (going uphill)

I struggled my way up to about 1,600mtrs then had to get tactical and take great care to traverse the steep slope that led up to the summit. There was absolutely no chance of walking on the piste and the off-piste was just bumpy ice and very steep. Even making kick-turns felt challenging because of the extreme angle. I also realised that it was too late to turn around and ski down as there was no safe place to stop and take my skins off it was all so steep.

Keep Calm and Move On

In the end, I stayed calm, and made my way slowly but surely up to the top. There were plenty of people around, so there was no fear of being really stuck in a bad way but I now appreciate a lot more that bringing extra equipment “just in case” is very wise indeed.
Glad to only have a few ice scratches from some little slips on ice and a bruised ego for not having planned better!

Here are some more pics from the weekend.

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