Pitztal Holiday

Hiking and sightseeing
in and around Pitztal Tyrol

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    1. Background / History

    Background or history of the destination, including a link to it’s website if available. 

    Optional:

    • a map with icons
    • photos

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    2. The hiking trail

    Summary about the trail.

    Map loading, please wait ...

     

     

    The duration, possible other routes.

    2.2 Starting point

    The trail starts at the bus stop “Wenns Pitztaler Hof”. There is a parking lot near this hotel-restaurant.

    2.3 Turn-by-turn directions

    The trail starts at the bus stop “Wenns Pitztaler Hof”. Follow the signs “Hochasten” to the north. From Hochasten we walk along the road to Gasthof Plattenrain. At the inn we take the abbreviation steeply uphill towards Hochastner Alpe after the sight of the meditative chapel. We can have a rest on the Sonnenbankerl of the alp and then we use the forest path for the descent to Hochasten. At the chapel we leave the road and follow the road to Ameishaufen and Trenk. The circle in Wenns then closes over the hamlets of Auders and Farmie.

    2.4 Duration

    For people used to heights it takes x-y hours to reach the destination. For others it will take zz minutes more. When enjoying the scenery more relaxed, taking photos etc. it will take around xx hours. Going down to the village yy goes much faster; around xx hours including zz minutes break for people not used to heights.

    3. Recommended maps for this region:

    Pitztal/Kaunertal – Mayr Verlag Ötztaler Alpen – Kompass Wanderkarte Blatt 43

    4. Photos

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    5. Useful links

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    1. History of the Taschachhaus

    The original lodge was built from natural stone, in 1873/74, as third hut of the German Alpine Club, (in German Deutsche Alpen Verein (DAV)). In 1898/99, the new Taschachhaus was built by the DAV section Frankfurt. In the years 1969 and 1979/80, it was expanded and modernized.

    The current winter house was built in 1999. From 2005 to 2008, the main building was renovated and expanded, the volume of the house was doubled. The roof shape was retained and now it has a storm-proof form. From 2010, the Munich section of the DAV has acquired the Taschachhaus of the section Frankfurt.

    The Taschachhaus is situated near Mittelberg, at the end of the Pitztal valley, at an altitude of 2434 meters, next to the tongue of the Taschach glacier.

    Taschachhaus with mouth of glacier
    © taschachhaus

    As European bird sanctuary or in English “Special Protection Area” (SPA) is called the protected areas, which have been designated on the basis of Art. 4 (1) of the Birds Directive. Together with the protected areas under the Fauna Flora Habitat Directive (1992), the FFH areas, the special bird protection areas make up the European network of protected areas  Natura 2000. The size of the SPA in the Ötztal alps is 396.84 km².

    Map of the SPA of the Ötztal alps
    © www.outdooractive.com

    2. The hiking trail

    The trail starts at the parking lot of the Pitztaler Gletscherbahn in Mittelberg, take the rightmost parking, right next to the start of the trail. Just follow the yellow signs towards the Taschachhaus. During the hike, the Taschach creek is passed a few times, before reaching the goods lift, at the end of the valley. From there, the trail goes steep uphill, over the moraine hills, to the Taschachhaus.

    The trail is situated in the following protected areas: Naturpark Kaunergrat and Vogelschutzgebiet Ötztaler Alpen.

    2.1 Map

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    During the Second World War, an American Boeing B17 Flying Fortress (a four-engined heavy bomber for the long haul), crashed on the glacier. On October 23, 1944, this bomber was on the go from Sterapone (Italy), to an ammunition factory in Pilsen (Czechoslovakia). After the plane was hit by an anti-aircraft fire, the bomber got leaderless and the pilot Howard Dallman tried to reach neutral Switzerland. About Sölden in the Ötztal, the nine-man crew bailed out with a parachute.

    The bomber crashed on a mountain wall and the wreckage crashed to the underlying Taschach glacier. Nowadays, still several wreckage pieces are lying on the western edge of this glacier, to about 2,500 m. The largest pieces of wreckage are a tire (Ø 1,5 m), incl. rim and shock absorbers, an engine block (Ø 1.2 m), several wing parts (corrugated iron), up to 10 m2 and 2 empty tanks. This place is called “the Flyer” (in German: beim Flieger). From the hut to the Flyer is a 30 minutes hike, surefootedness is required.

    Coördinates beim Flieger (page 3, 23-10-1944) 46°55’N, 10°50’E (46.9146922, 10.8342988).

    Location of components of the B17
    © Keith & Helene Bullock

     

    A destroyed engine block of the four-engined B17
    © Keith & Helene Bullock

     

    From the place “Beim Flieger”, you can reach the Taschach glacier in a 15 minutes walk.

    At the Taschach glacier
    © Taschachhaus

    2.2 Starting point

    The trail starts at the parking lot of the Pitztaler Gletscherbahn in Mittelberg, the rightmost parking place is the closest to the start of the trail.

    Parking lot with starting point of the trail
    © Outdooractive

     

    How to get there:

    By car: From the center of Wenns, follow the L16 (Pitztaler Landesstrasse), up to Mandarfen and turn just outside the town on the right to “Parking Talstation Gletscherbahn”.

    By bus: There is a bus connection between Wenns and Mittelberg (ÖBB 4204), it takes 54 minutes.

    Mountains and summit near the Taschachhaus
    © berge-gipfel.de

    2.3 Turn by turn directions

    From the starting point, follow the yellow signposts towards the Taschachhaus. First you cross a wide wooden bridge over the Taschach creek, which is also designed for downhill runs in the winter.

    After a short time you reach the Taschach valley (1796 m) with its beautiful flower meadows. Here is a little lodge, the Taschach Alm. From there, go left down to the stream (the path on the right leads to the Riffelsee). After crossing the Taschach creek, follow the flat way until you reach the valley station of the material cable car (2042 m).

    Valley station of the material cable car
    © www.outdooractive.com

    From there, the hiking trail goes straight on, do not cross the creek – the old way to the west side of the valley is blocked because of a slope slip, as of July 2012.

    Take the road to the left
    © www.outdooractive.com

    After a while, you cross a new sturdy wooden bridge over the Taschach creek, follow the path along the glacial moraine begins to rise steeply.

    Crossing the new bridge
    © www.outdooractive.com

    Then it takes a few steps down before the last short climb begins to the hut.

    Final destination in sight
    © www.outdooractive.com

    Caution: The Taschach valley is also a large pasture area with free-ranging cows, so take care with dogs and small children.

    2.4 Duration

    For people used to heights it takes 2.5 hours to reach the Taschachhaus. When enjoying the scenery more relaxed, taking photo’s etc. it wil take around 3 hours.

    4. Photo’s

     

    Interior of the Taschachhaus
    © Taschachhaus

     

    Mascot
    © Taschachhaus

    Terrace at the back of the Taschachhaus
    © Wikipedia

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    1. The Ludwigsburger Hütte

    The Ludwigsburger hütte (formerly named Lehnerjoch hütte) is located at 1935 meters above sea level on the western slope of the northern ‘Geigenkammes’ in the Pitztal valley, just below the treeline on an idyllic meadow. It is surrounded by the romantic landscape of the Oetztal Alps (‘Ötztaler Alpen’).

    The Ludwigsburger hütte is family friendly due to its location and its amenities. It is recommended by the alpine club ‘Alpenverein ‘ in the brochure “Mit Kindern auf der Hütte” (With children at the hut). A large playground for small children is located in the front of the hut and an eight-meter-high climbing rock is situated above the hut for elder children.

    The view across to the mountains of the Kaunergrat is one of the nicest views in the Eastern Alps (‘Ostalpen’). Several hiking trails lead to surrounding peaks and neighboring huts. One of them is the ‘St. Leonharder Höhenweg’, which leads through lonely mountain landscapes with magnificent views. Some of the peaks are reachable via easy climbing routes (up to difficulty level III).

    In the surrounding environment you will find alpine flora and animals such as for example ibex, chamois, deer, marmots, grouse and mountain salamanders.

    2. The trail

    The hiking trail of 3.6 km to the Ludwigsburger hütte starts just above the small village Zaunhof and crosses several times the forest road before it reaches the hut. During the hike you can see the northern Kaunergrat at the other site of the Pitztal valley, including a view on the 3353 m high Rofelewand with even in summer time ice on the northern face.

    It takes about 2.5 hours for people used to heights to reach the Ludwigsburger hütte. We did it in 4.5 hours while enjoying the views during longer breaks and taking pictures. Walking back to Zaunhof took us 1.5 hours (including total of 15 minutes of small breaks).

    The village Zaunhof

    The village Zaunhof, starting point of the hike to the Ludwigsburger hütte

    2.1 Map

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    [sgpx gpx=”/wp-content/uploads/gpx/20140718a Ludwigsburger Hutte – Wandeling heen (Oregon 600).gpx” mheight=”0px” gheight=”250px” ]

    2.2 Starting point

    The hiking trail starts in Pitztal at the small village Zaunhof-Grüble (St. Leonard) near the materials lift of the Ludwigsburger hütte, where also a small parking lot is situated.

    To get there by car drive from the beginning of the Pitztal valley via Arzl, Wenns, Schön, Wiesle and Ritzenried towards the village Wiese. Roughly a kilometer after Wiese a  sign indicates the road to Zaunhof at the left side of the road. Carefully cross the road and follow the signs to Zaunhof/Zaunhof-Grüble till the parking lot of the materials lift. The building of the materials lift can be recognized by the wall painting of the Ludwigsburger hütte.

    Wall painting at the materials lift of the Ludwigsburger Hütte

    Wall painting at the materials lift of the Ludwigsburger Hütte

    Using public transport is also possible. The Pitztaler bus stops at Zaunhof-Moosbrücke from where the materials lift can be reached by a 15 minutes walk.

    2.3 Turn-by-turn directions

    Walk along the materials lift building (at left side) and take the first street at the left (towards Außerlehn-Oberlehn). Continue on this road till the little Chapel at the right as shown in the photos below.

    Just above the chapel the hiking trail towards the Ludwigsburger hütte starts. When the forest road is encountered it can be decided to follow this road, which is easier to follow then the hiking trail described in this article. The hiking trail follows largely the historical road “Historischen Almenweg”, which was specially made to built the Ludwigsburger hütte in 1930.