Bavarian Classic — Alpspitze from Kreuzeck Hutte


This post by WildSnow.com blogger  

Like a rising lake of cotton balls, fog moved in during the night and covered the Kreuzek Hutte in smothering white. But the cold air of high altitude Bavaria also pulled enough moisture from the froth to make a few more centimeters of fresh snow.

This at the Dynafit press event in Garmisch, Germany, a few weeks ago. Dynafit figures the way to work with media is to hold a mini-conference up at an authentic mountain lodge or hut, then evangalize the captive audience with the Dynafit way by having top mountain guides take the group on various ski tours for the day. Works for me, as they make great stuff so I’m an easy sell. Today’s goal: Alpspitze, a Bavarian classic alp that rises just to the east of Zugspitze, Germany’s highest peak.

Backcountry Skiing

View of Alpspitze (left) and Zugspitze from parking lot at cable car. You take the gondola for the first 1,000 meters up to the hut, above there the human powered tour and climb to Alpspitze is a bit more than 1,000 meters.

Backcountry Skiing

Extreme skier and mountain guide Luis Stitzinger gathered our group in front of the Kreuzeck Hutte for a talk and beacon check. From the looks of things, I was wondering if he had a GPS and we were going to simply follow a track to the summit and back, with no view. Nice to be wrong, as we soon climbed above the fog.

Backcountry Skiing

What Alpspitz looks like from the hut without clouds. The ski climbing route swings way around to the left, while a few cable routes take the rocky faces.

Backcountry Skiing

Clearing clouds, strong legs and a summit you've never been to, that has to be one of the best combos in mountaineering.

Backcountry Skiing

The chamois around here are prolific.

Backcountry Skiing

Our guide Luis Stitzinger is known for his recent climbing and skiing on Nanga Parbat. He's a really personable fellow, and unlike the stereotypical European alpine guide spent quite a bit of time chatting folks up and pointing out different mountains and routes.

Alpspitz route.

After a bit of slogging through forest and ski resort, you crest a shelf and Alpspitze looks good rising above. Up route takes left ridge, down route takes the steep bowl..

Backcountry Skiing

Looking easterly, nice mountains.

Backcountry Skiing

And, the obligatory pointer shot.

Backcountry Skiing

This is Federico, manager of the Dynafit boot line. He's the guy who's been leaving those informative source comments about Dynafit boots. Thanks Fede! Parts of the ridge climb were actually somewhat exposed, a cable route helps with some of it, but during parts you're on a knife ridge and you'd better keep your balance! (Fritz Barthel photo)

Backcountry Skiing

Another view easterly.

Backcountry Skiing

Your friendly blogger on the summit, Zugspitze in background.

Backcountry Skiing

Skiing the nice line on the face turned out to be rocky and crusty, but we got some good turns lower down. That's me getting started. (Fritz Barthel photo.

Back at the Kreuzeck Hut, it was time for a few brews and an earful of Dynafit. For sure this was one of the nicer alpine tours I’ve been able to do over here. Lots of history, a nice summit, some challenging skiing — excellent.

Check out the video of this trip at Bergsteigen.at

(I blogged a few days ago on the highlights of Dynafit’s new gear (start here and read ahead), and I’ll soon file a few more blogs covering their accessories and clothing.)

Comments

11 Responses to “Bavarian Classic — Alpspitze from Kreuzeck Hutte”

  1. george dech January 27th, 2009 5:53 pm

    HI .. I just bought a pair of Ramer military cable ski bindings… the gold plate with the flex plate .. and large side-toe wire boot holders.. I can’t figgure out how to mount them.. the instructions are all written ..no photos … or diagrams…the store army surplus don’t have any assembled… and I go tskis also . with pre-drilled holes .. that don’t match the configuration of the bindings..it tells that the cable goes under the toe-hinge part of the sole plate… a small heel plastic plate is to level the shoe when in the down position against the ski… this I figgured out .. but is there a picture or some thing to see how it is supposed to be done..??? the bindings that are in yur blog are not the same varity… much different …can yu help me ..??? George…

  2. Lou January 27th, 2009 5:59 pm

    George, sorry, no mounting instructions here. They’re pretty basic, however. Tricky part is getting the cable front-throw in the correct location. Use trial and error for that.

  3. Sean January 27th, 2009 6:04 pm

    Great pics. Thanks again to Federico for his helpful comments.

  4. Mark January 27th, 2009 6:26 pm

    Superb summit! Alright, how ’bout a photo of the Dynafit Nanga Parbat ski??

  5. Njord January 27th, 2009 6:35 pm

    Nice work on the Alpspitze! Did you go via the Feratta route or the direct? Some of my favorite skiing was done on that hill… yet for some bizarre reason both Germans and Austrians poo-poo the area!

  6. george dech January 27th, 2009 7:01 pm

    I bought RAmer military bindings and I can’t see how to mount them… the written instructions are not a help…I can’t find photos or see a mounted example… the bindings are not what I seen in your blog.. can you assist me…

  7. powderjunky January 27th, 2009 8:34 pm

    Beautiful Pics! Germany’s mountains look as good as their tubed meats!

  8. Lou January 28th, 2009 7:07 am

    Njord, we used the ridge as marked to left looking up, it has a feratta on part of it, but apparently there are a number of ferattas on the peak (all sound like a lot of fun).

  9. Lou January 28th, 2009 7:46 am

    Dynafit Nanga Parbat ski photo added to the Dynafit ski report.

    http://www.wildsnow.com/1658/new-dynafit-skis-2009/

  10. Stefan January 28th, 2009 3:32 pm

    Lou you are making me a bit homesick…Garmisch and the Alpspitze that’s where I grew up and spend plenty of time in the backcountry. Glad to see you had great weather and company for this classic route. Did you had a chance and visit the Stuiben Huette for a refresment (AKA beer), that is a nice stop on the way down from the Alpspitze before decending home or traversing back towards the Kreuzeck.

  11. Terry January 28th, 2009 6:11 pm

    george dech – check this thread on Ramer’s here, and maybe contact some of the people posting:
    http://www.backcountryworld.com/showthread.php?t=1467

    Great photos and report, Lou! Has me wanting to go to Garmisch!

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Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information opinion website and e magazine. Lou's passion for the past 45 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about backcountry skiing and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free back country news and information here, and tons of Randonnee rando telemark info.

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