15th August: Epic walk up Brunnsteinspitze

Today was tough. The book said 6 hours but, after we got back, I worked out that was just for the outward leg! Needless to say, I am shattered. At one point I didn’t think I’d make it to the top but I did, so I’m pleased 🙂

We got up later than we should have done really, and had breakfast and made some sandwiches. John was quite pleased with the sandwich ‘art’.

The terrain and vegetation in the Bavarian Alps is very different from that in the Italian Alps. Rather than meadows full of alpine flowers, and rivers and waterfalls, there are forests at the foot of the mountains which turn to scrub higher up, and then rocky paths and scree. That’s probably why the walking today felt so much harder than it had in Italy… We were either picking our way over tree roots, scrambling up rocks, or trying not to slip on the scree.

After the first leg of ascent through the forest today, we came to a suspension bridge. I didn’t like it very much!

A more welcome sight was the mountain hut which marked the end of the second stage of the route, approximately half way up. However, we decided a beer wasn’t a good idea with 700m still to climb, so we promised ourselves one on the way down.

We finally reached the top of the mountain after about 4 and a half hours of relentless climbing. The highest peak was Rotwandlspitze at 2191m. The views were absolutely amazing, with mountains in all directions, and Mittenwald, where we started, looked like a model town in the valley.

After a short rest, we continued a short distance to a second peak, Brunnsteinspitze, 2179m, before making our way back down.

The descent over the rocks and scree was quite long and difficult, especially as it was now quite hot. We have never been more pleased to see a mountain hut!

Once we finally got to the bottom of the mountain, the walk back to the campervan along the valley seemed to take forever. However, it was great to look back up to the top and think ‘we were up there a few hours ago!’

Now we’re showered and changed and will shortly be going to find something to eat as neither of us has the energy to cook. John is talking about going walking again tomorrow but one thing is certain… It’ll have to be an easy one! My legs are on strike!

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