Expedition To Austria

To the Lechtai Nature Park

Wednesday 22th August 2012

We’re setting off today for our Centenary trip to Austria. We’re due to arrive tomorrow into Lechtal. We’ll keep you posted on our progress.

Lechtai Nature Park

St Cuthbert's Church

Thursday 23th August 2012

It was a long journey, but we have arrived!!!!
Everyone got settled into their rooms (some with ensuite) and we enjoyed a hearty meal of spaghetti bolognaise.

Friday 24th August 2012

First full day and aclimatisation walk.

We walked along the river Lech and took the chairlift to gain some height (thank goodness) on the Jöchelspitze.

From there, the Scouts had a light uphill walk (at alpine pace) to the viewpoint looking over Bach, our home for the next 12 days.

The Explorers decided to go higher and summited the Jocklespitz (not bad for a first day in the mountains).

Saturday 25th August 2012

Today we’re off to Neuschwanstein castle (or Baron Bomburst’s castle if you’re a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang fan), the weather is a little bit a bit damp so good day for a bus trip!

Impressive castle although Akela wasnt too impressed to find out it was only built in 1886.  We had a guided tour and then took the scenic route back via the bridge. This photograph shows the viewpoint down onto the castle …does anyone recognise it yet as the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang castle or better still as the (so it is believed) the castle that inspired Disneys Fantasia castle.

We stopped at Lake Plansee on the way back, with plans for paddling and pedalos. Disappointingly there were no pedalos available today. When it started to rain we all took cover in the cafe for Hot Chocolate and ice cream.

Sunday 26th August 2012

Early night last night ready to leave for a 2 day (Scouts) and 3 day (Explorers) mountain expedition in the Lechtal Alps today. It’s another chairlift for us, but only once we get onto the bus to the base of the lift.From about the 2000m contour we began a long traverse around the head of the valley in typical Lakeland summer weather conditions (rain) taking us to the German – Austrian border encountering a steep scramble down-climb at one stage.

For a few brief moments the sun came thro to lift the spirits only for them to be washed away by the rain and hail!
From the border it was a short descent to the Kemptner Hutte that was to be our home for the night.
From previous experience mountain huts are small homely affairs with basic but comfortable accommodation, however this one was a veritable palace with 200+ beds plush dining area, waitress service and best of all a real bar! Never were the Scouts so glad of a refreshing Coke or Fanta and the adults a well earned beer!

Monday 27th August 2012

After a good night’s sleep and breakfast the Explorers set off in blue sky conditions for the second night mountain hut and the Scouts set off to climb the Muttlerkopf, 2366m

Scouts:  Following a steep climb we emerged at the cross on the top of the peak at around 12.30. Back to the col for lunch and a rest then the long march out down the valley in sweltering heat to Holzgau past a rather impressive waterfall.

Thank heavens for the Postbus back to the chalet.

Tuesday 28th August 2012

Scouts:  Bit of a late start after the hut trip but after a hearty breakfast the Scouts went rock climbing a short way from the chalet. 3hrs of vertical fun in the blistering heat climbing and abseiling.

Time to cool off in the pool now.

Explorers:  After a second night and a typical Austria breakfast, bread, cheese, jam etc  we set off in for the Grosser Krottenkopf, 2656m.

Once back the Explorers had a light snack and set off to the pool for a ‘refreshing’ dip

Wednesday 29th August 2012

Been to Imst today for rafting on the river Inn. All 27 spent 1hr30 on the water thro the grade 3 rapids spending time both in and out of the boat!
On the way back we stopped for a run on the Alpine Coaster – the longest dry toboggan run in Europe. weeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Full day out in the blazin sun! 9 pin Bowling later at the hotel Alpenblick next door after beef stew for tea.

Thursday 30th August 2012

So biking today! All aboard the bus to Holzgau to pick up the hire bikes. After a bit of sorting out with tyres, gears and brakes it was off to the suspension bridge above the Holenbach river. 200m long, 100m above the river and a bit wobbly.

After a thrilling steep descent to the valley we had lunch before continuing up the valley along the river path in the pouring rain crossing some spectacular bridges on our way to Steeg. After a coffee and strudel in the cafe to dry off / warm up it was back to Holzgau along the river – this time down hill!

Friday 31st August 2012

Canyoning this morning and managed to sneak in a little abseiling in too! Then for a spot of Souvenir shopping in Reutte this afternoon, ready for our very long journey back tomorrow.

Saturday 1st September 2012

Well, we’re now on our way back to the sunny UK. We spent this morning tidying the chalet, stopped for lunch at the Gruener Baum restaurant.

Sunday 2nd September 2012

After a very long drive back, we arrived back at our HQ at 13:00 today. A massive thank you to all of the leaders who helped make this a successful expedition and thank you to all Scout members who came  – we all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

There’s more information on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

© 5th Preston (St Cuthbert's) Scout Group & Indiana Explorer Scout Unit

Registered Charity 521653