(Note from Lou: I’ve got another post re Steve Romeo I’ve been working on. Didn’t feel it was quite ready, more, I just know Steve loved backcountry skiing so much he would have been psyched to see the post below from the old man. So that’s what goes up today. It sounds like a memorial for Steve and Chris will be held tomorrow at Jackson Hole Resort. I’ll try to make it, but that’s going to be difficult. If not, will do something personal here — on top of a mountain if possible. RIP Steve and Chris.)
Zillertal is a region of the Austrian Alps just north of the Dolomites (see map at bottom of post). The area has “real” mountains and plentiful ski tours, though resort skiing has compromised huge swaths and you get the feeling that the march of industrial tourism has no signs of stopping.
For today’s jaunt we headed for the Gabler (3,263 meters), a high shoulder/saddle just a hundred vertical feet or so below the 3303 summit of the Reichenspitze massif. Doing this is a big day for average fitness guys like me, about 1,800 meters (6,000 vertical feet). The high terrain around here is good, with some smaller glaciers and ice cliffs to take it up a level. Unfortunately you waste quite a bit of energy on the long valley approach march. But it is all beautiful — especially when you’ve got 20 centimeters of fresh “zero avalanche danger” powder rising your smile. The day in photos: