The ski season is over in Geilo for this year and before the summer season starts for real my boyfriend and me are spending almost two weeks in Tirol, Austria. From one mountain village to another. However the small Austrian village that I am spending time in at the moment is a lot greener and warmer than my mountain village back in Norway.
My first visit to Austria was earlier this year when I spent one week at one of the more exploited Austiran tourist destinations for skiing, located an hour or so outside Salzburg. Even if 90% of the people there spoke at least one of the Scandinavian languages I was still speechless over the amazing mountains that we experienced there. And I am not less impressed this time-rather the opposite. It is almost a bit daunting how impressive and awe-inspiring the Tyrolian alps are.
On our second day here we drove to Mandarfen- a village located 1675 MASL where one can access the ski area at Rifflsee (a part of the Pitztal Gletscher ski area). However, the lifts are closed since a few weeks ago due to lack of snow in the lower areas and our aim this day was to hike up to the lake Rifflsee located at 2232 MASL. We followed the marked trail towards the top of the gondola until the snow became too deep to walk. We found ourselves an alternative route in order to avoid the big snowfields that we came across. After four hours of walking and climbing up far too steep mountainsides we reached the lake tired but happy.
After relaxing and eating a bit in the sun we headed towards the lake in order to see if it was possible to walk around it. However, since the area was covered in snow we did not dare to walk the whole way around since the ice had started to melt at some places and it was impossible to decide what was lake and what was land.
The decent took approx. two hours and was rather easy since we walked on the gravelroad that lead up to the top station of the main gondola in the summer. After enjoying a Radler at the local pub we drove home happy but tired.