Schneeberg - Breite Ries 14.1.2015

Karl ("Koarl") Tisch, passionate climber, member of the local mountain rescue team and photographer living in Puchberg/Schneebergdörfl, got a few of my pictures for his slide presentation on Schneeberg. Gladly, I followed his invitation for a walk up to the Bürkle - hut. As it is winter, of course we took the opportunity to continue the walk with our touring skis up the huge scree of Breite Ries (an English translation would sound like "broad scree").


We meet up at 8 a.m. in Losenheim - shortly after sunrise.

Nearly all the way up to the Breite Ries, the route leadfs through dense forest. This is the only place where you get a good view down the valley to Puchberg.

All of a sudden, the forest comes to its end and we enter free territory - the Breite Ries.

Panoramic view to the Breite Ries.

On tour on ribbed snow, frozen after heavy rain. Not an optimal skiing piste today.

Snow sheets on Karl´s climbing skins are an advantage - with my nearly new skins, I have to go zig-zag in serpentines, whereas he can choose a more direct ascent route.

View down to Puchberg ...

 ... with Schneebergdörfl in the foreground. A dust layer over the distant Vienna´s plain.

Not very much snow in the Ries ...

Here, several avalanches have come down. This year, it snowed a lot on snow-free ground - so there was no good connection. The result was a big avalanche at first. Afterwards, there was strong wind that deposited huge cornices at the ridge, which came down as avalanches afterwards. However, Karl also works for the avalanche alert service, so I can trust him as he is very much experienced. Furthermore, it is too early in the morning for avalanches to come down.

A bit further up.

Skiing wouldn´t be fun here.

Still rather far up to the Kaiserstein, the Northern summit of Schneeberg. It wouldn´t be possible to walk up to the summit with skis, becasue the uppermost parts are steep gullies with nearly 45 degrees inclination. So, at the upper end of this smooth snow band, we turn back.

Panoramic picture of the Breite Ries: far left the Rieswände, then Kaiserstein, Festenkogel and Nandlgrat, far right is Puchberg, with Hohe Wand behind. Click here or into the picture for a larger display.

Big rocks laying around.

Short rest at our highest point. Skins and camera into the rucksack, put on the skis and run down.

On our descent, the planned rest in the Bürkle hut. This hut belongs to the mountain rescue team, and being a team member, Karl has a key.

A bit of a view up into the Breite Ries. Karl heats the oven, offers apricot schnaps, and serves hot sausages. Thanks a lot for your invitation, Koarl!