But back to the sheep. We had done the usual summer skier routine, skied the glacier near Kitzsteinhorn here in Kaprun. But I wanted to do something else for my last run, with Janne already enjoying a lunch in the valley.
I wanted to ski all the way down to the station at 1976 meters. The only trouble was that there really wasn't much snow left. The ski patrol advised against it. The route looked nasty from the ski lift, and I'd have to walk quite a bit. No matter. There was a stream running through a steep gully that still had some snow left.
My route runs under the Langwiedbahn chair lift, and it turned out that I only had to take my skis off for one small part. And at the end I had to walk down maybe 100 meters and cross a few streams. But what a wonderful run! The gully was narrow, occasionally narrowing down to less than my ski's length. The snow had not been touched by other skiers for a long time. The snow was soft and it was a pleasure to ski. In the winter this route is an off-piste run called X5, The Pipeline. The only danger on this route was from accidentally falling through the snow cover to the stream. There was not much water, but it was still scary. On one point the snow fell off under me, but not enough to sink my skis in.
And on the walk down, I met my new skier friends, the sheep. They were running scared, however. I'm guessing they do not see too many skiers. And to be honest, this part of the mountain was more suited for pasture than for skiing.
The area feels relatively flat, however. And due to its relatively low altitude - 3000 meters - the snow seemed softer than on some of the other summer ski places that I have been to. I usually enjoy the early mornings when the slopes are still hard ice. Not that skiing soft snow is bad - I like it too. But it tends to stick to your skis and make you feel like you are falling. Particularly if you go outside the tracked area, unless it is steep enough.
Where Did the Eskimos Go?
I also liked the design of the restrooms:
Winter in Kaprun
The ski lifts in Kaprun work well. I liked the Gletscherjet cabins. Floor photo of the round cabins is here:
As many people may remember, Kaprun has a train that runs through the mountain to one of the top stations, but after a catastrophic fire claimed 155 lives in November 2000, the train has not been used. The track and stations still exist, providing an eerier reminder of the tragedy. The ghost train of Kaprun. May the victims rest in peace.
Here's a street sign from the Kaprun village. I don't know what this is, but it certainly looks like my kind of a working group:
The glacier is well equipped with bathrooms and other facilities. Here you can choose your direction based on the seriousness of your emergency:
Our summer vacation was not entirely spent skiing, by the way. In addition to liking skiing, my son insists on visiting aviation and technology museums. We did a wonderful tour of museums in Munich, Sinsheim, Speyer, and Frankfurt. In particular, I can recommend the Sinsheim and Speyer museums as one of the best museums in the world for covering aviation. The only downside of this trip is that my ankle has gotten very sore for some reason. Maybe too much walking in the museums. Lets hope it heals soon, so that I can get back to skiing. And walking.
The following picture is from the mining demonstration in Deutsche Museum in Munich: