the people square

a community serious about adventuring

Halloweensbruck – We Climbed a Mountain Backwards

Signs that it’s Halloween in Innsbruck, Austria: tomboy tween gangsters hucking  bottle caps in any general direction or at anyone’s general direction; three wannabe gangsters exiting the corner gas station with a fresh carton and a mission to take up egging; one bed sheet ghost; one bloodied beer wench with crazy-haired killer (or world’s worst hair day). Other than that, Halloween was pretty much non existant in Austria.

It was over some traditional Austrian cuisine that we were told the best thing to do in Innsbruck Austria was to go for a hike. Not really sure if the Austrian Alpes only offered the types of hikes you have to train regularly for, and half expecting that it had just been assumed that Morgan and I were avid hikers and had just signed up for a full body summit climb, we did some impromptu pantomiming research. We’d asked the two Austrian ladies who’s idea it was we do this, with our hands at a 45 degree tilt showing the easy degree at which we’d like the hike to be, if there were hikes catered to the less avid hiker. We were in luck, so on October 31st, we climbed an Austrian Alp.

The bluest sky meeting mountains wrapped in a motionless wave of white wind kicking up the freshest snow. Below followed the firey amber colours that make autumn. The small town that is Innsbruck laid out at the perfect bird’s eye view. Each apartment/townhouse complex is the boarder to its own inner-residential courtyard. The smoke stacks puffying white. The turbid mountain water, a somkey turqoise.

Other than the handfulls of locals and tourists that made it up the mountain that day, there was little in the way of wildlife. That was until we came upon the Landmark Donkey. I’m not too sure if the donkey came with the trail or not because all it did was sit in the middle of the path staring at the ground. I’d like to think that the tenants of the bar, that was the resting point for hikers, were the owners of the lost looking Landmark Donkey. It was either world’s laziest donkey or it was down on life that no one dresses up as a donkey for Halloween. What is it with us and running into small, not-quite-horses horses (roadside midget poney in Beglium)?

It wasn’t until we were sliding down the side of a mountain on our asses that we figured out that we’d picked the intended route up as our exit down. That we had made the wrong choice was made evidentally clear by contorted faces people would make as they passed us on their way up the mountain. No, it wasn’t from their hiking exasperation. It was straight fear. There was one couple in particular that passed us and stopped to make some full volume comments in German that Morgan was sure he had translated into “You guys are ****** idiots!”. I decided that we must have either looked like serious professional climbers who did this sort of thing all the time or like dummy tourists who have no concept of how to hike. It wasn’t until the Mountaineer Pole Master literally speed hiked his way passed us and half way down the mountain by the time we’d made any progress.

Eventually we made our noodle leg descent to the base. We would feel the mountainous effects for days after.

Thank you, Innsbruck. You’re a beauty.

Ps: On our train to Austria we were asked to move from the business class section to the first class section. When asking the train attendant what the difference between the two were he said “Business is more”. It’s actually less. Two chairs less.

The Limey

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This entry was posted on November 10, 2010 by in Austria, Innsbruck.
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