The day started grey and cold but got better
and better. This was the start of a week of really good weather.
We took the ski lift to the top of the Hohe
Mut. This was the same side of the valley that we'd been two days before and we
didn't see any great sense in repeating the climb out. Actually there are two
ski lifts, a double and a single. We had fleeces and waterproofs on for the
second and it was still cold.
Whilst the Hohe Mut is a skiing hill, it has a
long long, unspoilt ridge leading to the high hills of the Italian border. There
are pretty valleys on either side, the Glaisbach and the Rotmoos, both of which
end in impressive glaciers.. As we walked along the ridge I wasn't sure which
way we were going to descend. My mind was made up for me by the paths: as the
ridge started to rise seriously, the Glaisbach path descended steeply into the
valley. Having gained the height I wanted to keep it so we took he Rotmoos path
which took followed a lovely contouring line higher and higher up the valley.
Even then we weren't sure how far we could go before having to turn back. In
fact we were rewarded by a lovely circuit. Initially we did have to cross a
number of pockets of ice before we reached a small ridge just in front of the
glacier; this was a sufficiently stimulating target for walkers that it had its
own stamp with a height on it (2700m).
We dropped off jsut a little to a bit of a
corner with lots of cairns and a shelter and we had lunch there. There was then
a good return path (and lots of people) along a ridge before it dropped back
into the Rotmoos valley and we stopped for a drink at the Schonwieshutte before
returning via the lower ski lift.
But one bit of excitement on a fairly dull
final section. If you've been to European mountains you know that they are alive
not with the sound of music but the whistling of marmots (otherwise known as
hamsters on steroids). They are easy to hear but hard to spot. In fact the only
place I'd seen them before was the tourist viewpoint out on to the Grossglockner
where they are virtually tame. However we took a wrong turn to a dead end but
going up this path I heard a great screech in front of me and just caught sight
of a marmot going down a hole. Beryl missed this but she did see the second one
which ran across the track ahead of us to return to the same hole. The first one
was clearly the sentry warning of aliens about.