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Ski touring in the Gesäuse

Skitouren im Gesäuse

Winter has finally arrived and all you have to do is get out there and up those mountains – mountains that look so very different in summer. Surrounding you is complete and utter silence and, while moving smoothly on the snow, you will begin to feel your spirits come to life.

When ski touring in the Gesäuse there’s simply no way to avoid the mountaineering village of Johnsbach. Thanks to its fantastic location and the great snow conditions it’s a true ski touring paradise. That’s why at Kölblwirt Inn they came up with the idea of establishing a ski touring test centre where you can test out equipment. So, Johnsbach is a popular starting point for skiing tours, which is why we recommend visiting it on a weekday or outside the holiday season.

Out in the winter nature

Something that makes the Gesäuse special when it comes to ski touring are the National Park Routes, which are signposted even in Winter in order to not disturb the deer during the dormant season – and also to make sure that you don’t get lost! Be prepared to be wowed by the views of all the winter wonders, small and large, on your descent.

In good company

If you don’t feel entirely safe ski touring on your own, you should take somebody along that really knows his or her way around and understands how to read the snow conditions. And that brings us to the mountain guides, because they also offer their services during the winter when the snowy mountains are calling us. And let’s not forget about the BaseCamps, where you can receive complete training for ski touring in small groups.

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Highlights from Gesäuse

Hesshütte Lodge
Johnsbach

Hesshütte Lodge

Hesshütte Lodge

High above the valley at 1,699 metres, the largest and best-known lodge in the Gesäuse is surrounded by the Hochtor Mountain, Planspitze Peak and Hochzinödl Peak. These mountains also happen to be the most popular ones to climb after spending a night at the lodge. The ascents via Wasserfallweg Trail – for experienced hikers only – or via Johnsbach are two of the Gesäuse's classic hiking routes, while the lodge’s host Reini has ensured the lodge has become a real institution over the years.

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Johnsbacher Mountain Hut Loop Hike
Johnsbach

Johnsbacher Mountain Hut Loop Hike

Johnsbacher Mountain Hut Loop Hike

The Mountain Hut Loop Hike – pack a few Gesäuse Perle Lemonades and get started at Ebnerkreuzung junction in Johnsbach. Gear yourself up with a backpack, enough water and hiking boots and soon you’ll be hiking from hut to hut. The four cosy mountain huts waiting to receive hikers are Kölblalm, Ebneralm, Zeiringeralm and Huberalm.

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Mödlingerhütte Lodge
Johnsbach

Mödlingerhütte Lodge

Mödlingerhütte Lodge

Try to imagine the following scene: A lodge so cosy it looks like something out of a fairy tale with the Admonter Reichenstein Peak as its backdrop. On the inside, the scent of culinary delights is sure to get your stomach grumbling, while outside the crystal clear mountain air awaits you. Traditional meals and drinks are always available here and the nights at the lodge couldn’t be any more relaxing. By the way – Mödlingerhütte Lodge is the only lodge in the Gesäuse that can also be reached from Paltental Valley.

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A Cemetery for Mountaineers
Johnsbach

A Cemetery for Mountaineers.

A Cemetery for Mountaineers.

Johnsbach. A small church stands alone near the edge of the forest. Surrounding it is one of the area’s most well-known cemeteries. In the mountaineering village of Johnsbach people know how to tell a good story, including quite a few tragic ones. At the mountaineers’ cemetery, those who lost their lives in the mountains of the Gesäuse, and indeed the world, are laid to rest. Walking through the remarkably beautiful tombstones and reading the stories they tell is a truly touching experience.

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Ebneralm Hut
Admont / Johnsbach

Ebneralm Hut

Ebneralm Hut

Hiking the loop.

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Weidendom Visitor Centre and Ecological Footprint
Johnsbach

The Heart of the National Park.

The Heart of the National Park.

Weidendom Visitor Centre is one of the first points of contact for visitors coming to the National Park. Coming here means you will be surrounded by the Gesäuse Mountains and the beautiful, green ‘willow tree construction’. You can also discover the smallest of species in the micro theatre or become informed about your ecological footprint by following the labyrinth in the oversized footprint. If you are in the mood for it, you can also go on one of the theme trails directly.

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Huberalm
Admont / Johnsbach / Johnsbach

Huberalm

Huberalm

Entlang der Johnsbacher Almenrunde.

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Odelsteinhöhle Cave
Johnsbach

Odelsteinhöhle Cave

Odelsteinhöhle Cave

Johnsbach and its cave.

Still looking for an exciting excursion? Why not book a guided tour of the Odelsteinhöhle Cave at Kölblwirt Inn? Famous for its aragonite crystals, the cave is a true highlight among the caves in Styria. It is located at 1085 m and while wandering through small and large halls, your guide will also tell you why it was declared a natural monument back in 1931.

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