Report about our fundraising run from Obernberg to Nals (111km, 5 days, 6.159 HM+, 7.216 HM-)
Wednesday, 21.6 / 1st stage: Obernberg – St. Anton/Pflersch
(842 HM+, 1,012 HM-, 18.2 km)
The starting signal for our five-day adventure was given at 8:00 a.m. in gorgeous summer weather, and admittedly I was a little nervous. After we had picked up Beat at his overnight accommodation in Steinach am Brenner, I already felt a bit better – because the chemistry between us seemed to be right from the start. We were then taken by car to the Waldesruh car park at the head of the Obernberg valley before heading up to the idyllically situated Obernberger See lake. Overlooked by the mighty Obernberger Tribulaun, we reached the Portjoch at 2,110 m, sweating on the steep Steig Nr. 93. The joy of the gained height lasted only for a short time, after crossing the state border we went down very steeply on the former military trail into the Pflerschtal valley. In the past, this route was often used by smugglers, but on our tour only half a fox crossed our path.
The descent was almost more sweaty than the ascent, and our toes also thanked us when we reached the valley floor again on the South Tyrolean side. With a view of the Pflerscher, Gschnitzer and Obernberger Tribulaun as well as the impressive Weißwandspitze, we reached St. Anton in the Pflerschtal and could thus tick off our 1st stage.
Thursday, 22.06. / 2nd stage: St. Anton/Pflersch- Moarerbergalm/Ridnaun(2,036 HM+, 1,142 HM-, 21 km)
When the alarm clock rang at 6 a.m., we were expecting bright sunshine, as predicted. However, the sky was cloudy, which we attributed to high fog or Sahara dust in the air.
The ascent to the Allriss-Alm and on to the Maurerscharte at 2,511 m was very strenuous despite the cloud cover, below the Scharte we had to cross snowfields and a short rain shower welcomed us as we crossed into the Ridnauntal. At the rustic Prischeralm, the mountain weather was perfect again. Not only the rustic alpine innkeeper Gilbert there, but also the impressive mountain panorama of the Stubai Alps with Feuerstein, Wildem Freiger, Wildem Pfaff and Zuckerhütl made us forget the exertions of the ascent. Now it was a brisk 700 metres downhill into the valley. Arriving at the mining museum in Maiern, we had to mobilise our last reserves of strength to make the almost 700 metres of altitude difference and 7 km ascent to the idyllically situated Moarerbergalm. The warm welcome from the innkeepers there and the culinary delights adequately compensated us for these hardships
Friday, 23.06. / 3rd stage: Moarerbergalm/Ridnaun – Pfelders
(1,355 HM+, 1,845 HM-, 25.5 km)
The weather forecast for this day was not good, because of the heat, severe thunderstorms were predicted. And indeed, we were woken up by a thunderstorm at 6:00 a.m. that morning, so we decided to wait a little longer. After all, the highest point of our tour – the Schneebergscharte at 2,700 m – was on the agenda for this stage. We were expecting snowfields anyway, but we didn’t want to be surprised by a thunderstorm or wet slippery stones at the summit. The weather gods seemed well-disposed towards us. Thanks to a window of clouds and even a few rays of sunshine, we reached the Scharte on dry feet and made the transition to the Schneeberghütte in record time.
Passing the numerous abandoned tunnels of the mine and a magnificent view of the precipitous walls of the Gürtelspitze and the bright lime band of the Schneeberger Weißen, we descended steeply into the Passeier valley. In the mountain village of Rabenstein we had to contend with difficult conditions, the path was poorly marked and high grass and undergrowth made our already tired legs even more tired. I knew that this would probably be the toughest stage of our tour. Arriving in Moos in the Passeier Valley, we still had to climb 8 km and a whole 700 metres in altitude to Pfelders. The scorching afternoon heat and the steep meadow slopes contributed to the fact that this stage will remain in our memories for a long time. We were all the happier when we arrived in Pfelders at around 4.30 pm.
Saturday, 24.06. / 4th stage: Pfelders – Meran
(959 HM+, 2,270 HM-, 22.3 km)
A few highlights awaited us today. We crossed two passes at once, the Falschnaljöchl at 2417 m and the Spronser Joch at 2581 m. For centuries, the dead of Pfelders were carried over the Falschnaljöchl and the Spronserjoch to the cemetery of the original parish of St. Peter im Passeier for burial. Hunters, shepherds and smugglers also knew about the advantages of this hidden crossing.
Due to the north-facing shade, the ascent via the Falschnaltal valley to the 1st Joch was quite pleasant – our tired legs of the previous day thanked us. Arriving at the Joch, 2 ibexes welcomed us. After crossing a few snowfields, we reached the Spronserjoch, from where we had a wonderful view of the impressive Spronser lakes in the middle of the mountains of the Texelgruppe Nature Park; they are also called the “largest high alpine water plateau in South Tyrol” with 10 lakes.
Now we had to descend a whole 2,200 metres in altitude, the descent was more difficult and more sweaty than we had expected: over a path paved with natural stones (dating back to ancient trade routes) we went steeply via Dorf Tirol into the Merano valley basin. There, a Mediterranean climate of over 30 degrees awaited us, which is why we were finally happy when we reached our destination for the day.
Sunday, 25.06. / 5th stage: Merano – Nals
(967 HM+, 952 HM-, 23.9 km)
On the last day of our tour, high summer temperatures greeted us early in the morning, which is why this final section of the route was also a challenge. The degrees rose rapidly, no wonder we had now reached an altitude of 300 metres in the valley – nevertheless, we had to overcome another 1000 metres of altitude via the old “Waalweg” between vineyards and apple orchards to reach today’s highest point – the plateau of Platzers. The exertions of the last few days were in our thighs, but we persevered and reached our final destination, Nals, after almost 6 hours of walking
Unforgettably beautiful, but also challenging days now came to an end. We were a good team and helped each other. That’s the only way this project worked and it also sets an example of what people can achieve together.
All the sweat and hardships are forgotten, but the thought of having done something good prevails: Girls in Kenya get a chance for education and an independent life.
Thanks to all supporters!
Special thanks to Beat Lohner, without him this project would not have been possible.