Route: Kreuzjoch

Area: Austria, Stubai Valley, Tyrol

Date of walk: 12th September 2023

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 3.5 miles

Ascent: 900 feet 

Weather: Mostly sunny and warm, distant views very hazy

Inspired by the wonderful views seen on yesterday’s walk we decided to revisit the start point and explore the area further. The base station of the Schlick2000 cable car is located just above the village of Fulpmes, and is served by the local bus service. Our Stubai Super Card ‘One Valley, One Card’ covered both the bus journey from our base in Milders, and the cable car

We passed through the middle station, where we’d ended yesterday’s walk, and alighted at the Kreuzjoch top station at a height of 7,200 feet. The views of the Stubai Massif were as awesome as they’d been the day before, and we were lucky to enjoy the scene in good light. We had in mind that we may be able to get as far as the Starkenburger Hutte but were prepared to turn back earlier if the going got too difficult or dangerous

We headed along an initially easy narrow path below Kreuzjoch, with dramatic views ahead, before reaching some rather more testing terrain. This started with an eroded staircase and was followed by a narrow metal bridge over a gully. There were steep drops to the side and we needed to concentrate carefully – a slip could have had serious consequences. Eventually a viewpoint appeared in the distance and we decided to climb up to it and make that the destination of our walk. Continuing to the Starkenburger Hutte would have involved a steep descent and re-ascent through rough and unknown terrain and I wasn’t sure if my new knee would be up to that yet

By the time we reached the viewpoint, blue skies had been replaced by grey and the views of the distant mountains were very hazy and rather disappointing. It was a dramatic scene nonetheless. From this point there was no alternative other than to retrace our steps, more confidently this time as we knew what lay in store. It was a fabulous walk and a fitting climax to our walking holiday in the Stubai Alps

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