Stubaier Höhenweg V – another ‘short’ day.

Nuernburger Hut  –  Sulzenau Hut.

First thing we were above a sea of clouds.  Then yet another blue skied day encouraged us to linger over breakfast.  The rockman was trying to hammer out the blister-inducing ridge in the heel of his right boot. We chatted to two Dutchmen out for a couple of days. Most walkers were German, understandable considering the ease of access. The guide book gives this stage as 4K and yet states 3-4 hours so you can imagine the terrain. We took 5hrs with stops etc.  It also suggests 400m of ascent which is misleading and was actually measured as 550m by my altimeter, this is a recurrent fault everyday as we usually climb 30% more than expected.You could see the wooden cross on the Niederl pass 400m above the hut. [click to enlarge]  All we had to do was plod up.Once there time was spent photographing and relaxing on a wooden bench next to the cross.A group of excited kids came up the cables with a guide, it was their first ‘summit’ and let’s hope it ignited a passion for the hills. There were excellent views of the Wilder Freiger and back to the Feuerstein, as well as steeply down into the next valley and its lakes.Initially we dropped straight down a cliff face on cables and then zigzagged steeply into the cirque and its turquoise lakes. The glacial moraines were set out before us like a geology lesson, of course the rockman interpreted all the features for us.

The steep drop with the Sulzenau Hut in the distance.

The steep drop with the Sulzenau Hut in the distance.

We weaved our way through bouldery grazing land where the shepherds were bringing down the flop eared flock before the Autumn snows. Crossing a summer plank bridge held up by an acrow prop we reached the modern clean Sulzenau Hut owned by the German Leipzig club.This coming weekend the Sektion Leipzig were having their annual meet at the hut and they were not taking bookings, this was the reason for our changed schedule. Even tonight the hut is busy and some of the members are arriving early – it will be a jolly party. The hut girls were very friendly and helpful but the guardian himself was a bit surly, maybe he had a lot on his mind. Having arrived early we enjoyed a creamy noodle soup and a Radler [Shandy made with real lemonade – delicious] We had our own room with a view but getting in and out of bunks isn’t easy at our age!

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