On 28th of August 2018 it was finally done: Ina and I completed successfully our crossing of the Alps from Garmisch-Partenkirchen (Germany), via Austria, to Lake Garda (Italy). This led to mixed feelings on both of us: On the one hand, we were naturally proud and happy to have reached our destination – but on the other hand, we were also a little sad that this adventure was over now.
26 days of hiking
For the entire tour we needed 26 daily stages, which we have covered in different years:
- Stages 1 – 12: Year 2014
- Stages 13 – 17: Year 2017
- Stages 18-26: Year 2018
We followed the instructions of the hiking guide from author Bernhard Flucher (publisher: KOMPASS-Verlag).
Since the Alps are actually running in east-west direction, but we were hiking from north to south, we had to climb and/or descend a considerable elevation gain every day (to be precise, a total of 20,330 meters up and 23,220 meters down). The total distance was 373 km.
Sometimes we spent the nights up in the mountains, in different mountain huts, and sometimes down in the valleys, in guesthouses or hotels. This resulted in a good mix of rustic mountain ambience and sometimes the comfort of a warm shower and good restaurants.
The tour was particularly varied: there were extremely long and exhausting stages, but also short and relaxing ones. There were easy to walk sections, but also challenging via ferrata (climbing routes). We ran through rain and snowstorms, but also at 34°C. We passed lush meadows, rocky scree slopes, icy glaciers, vertical rock faces, raging torrents, breath-taking mountain ridges, steep summits, hidden valleys, small mountain villages, inviting cities, …
On the way we had a lot of time to talk with each other. We shared our joys as well as our sorrows. But sometimes everyone went by themselves and in silence. We met interesting people who shared their stories with us. And we learned a lot about ourselves.
However, one thing has certainly not changed: mountain climbing is and remains our greatest passion and it is wonderful to be able to share it with eachother! What could be our next goal?
Here are a few impressions of our crossing of the Alps: