TIROLEAN MAGIC GETS EVEN CRAZIER IN THE ALPS
SWISS IRON TRAIL July 6-7
Wow this goes way back…a month ago! But I still remember clear as day that exhausting climb up to 3000m in the middle of the night in rain/sleet/snow…. With my partner Berthold…. This amazing guy would not leave my side after running together from the 30km
mark….he says you don’t want to be alone in the middle of the night up there so
we will partner up….
First of all, due to weather..the race had been delayed until 4pm (from 8am)…We were all pumped and fired up ready to go and BOOM…had to wait 8 hours…NO way I could go back to sleep..i went off in search of a Swiss Phone SIM Card…while my buddy Simone (who LOVES sleep) went back to the campsite for some ZZZZ.. Yes we had tented it the night before..and I am learning ..I am not so fond of that…seems so much harder to organize yourself. I’ll take a hostel or a Haystack any day over that..and that hardass surface (because I forget a mattress) I can feel the next day! I must be allergic to camping a bit because I always have puffy eyes
and face the next morning too!
For the upcoming Transalpine Race in September…we are going LUXURY baby..I am booking simple B n B’s for sure…I think I will avoid the tenting and the Gymnasium Camps and be the PRINCESS
OK now back to Swiss Iron Trail….Boom! the gun goes off at 4pm and sends us off high into the Alps to tackle in the night …the thought of doing 160km (it had now been shortened due to weather) seemed a little bit unreal BUT ONE STEP AT A TIME BABY……I think my steps were a little too hurried at one point as I fell flat on my face at the 5km mark….hit my knee hard on a big rock…It swelled up pretty fast…so we found a cold river to dunk it in for a bit and I got it taped up a bit at the first FOOD STATION.
I was having a sluggish run so far and actually enjoyed my long stop at the FOOD STATION getting taped up and slurping the soup and more! A while later running through St. Moritz – el Ritzo place – Berthold and I had to run a long flight of stairs which felt like ..I had never done stairs before…they were brutal and we still
had over 120km left to do…Yeah!
We do these races for many reasons including enjoyment..connecting with others, love the challenge etc….but I’ll tell you the SPIRIT in the air of brother and sisterhood is awesome. On the long trek up to 3000m, in the dark..the cold really set in..we could see the lit up Mountain Station and a array of lights snaked up the
mountain. I was suffering…feeling not strong, breathing hard, cold, etc….that
station seemed far away…even if it was a couple hundred metres away. As B and I
were nearing the top we heard a man behind us moaning and groaning….a mixture of
exhaustion and cold…he was sooo cold…He kept moaning and B helped him off with
his wet mits and gave this man his own mits that he needed! Wow…I saw this
everywhere though…people offering there own stuff to help out others….another
great guy gave me his dryer gloves and well. Next year I am investing in a very
expensive pair of waterproof, warm mits! I don’t care if they are $200…they are
By the time we blasted through the door of the Mountain Station at 3000m…it was packed of people…then I hear this Karrrrrriiiiieeeee ….Simone my darling was sitting on the ground giving me the look of death….I AM DONE…she said and a lot of others were pulling out of the race too! After warming up in there for awhile …it was so hard to get going again…They put those who were continuing down the mountain in a couple groups ..so I joined a grouped of 7…I had to continue to as far as I could. I did not feel strong but I knew I could handle the cold…..So we trucked it down the mountain….and a couple hours later…the whole race was called
off….they had to retrieve everybody that was still high up in the mountains.
Part of me was disappointed but a big part of me was grateful…
2 hours later we arrived back at Camp….almost 60km covered…an experience never to forget…that was my SWISS IRON TRAIL….
Livin' Adventure has had one WILD summer so far! 3 Adventures in June-July that were truly incredible and now more of my own Mountain Madness!
Livin Adventure gave birth in 2012 with one wonderful woman, named Helena, who dove into the 10 Day Adventure. We have been close friends since and Tirol, Austria had such an impact on her (the place, the people...everything) she has also returned for another two weeks last summer. That's what happens here, people must come back!
In summer 2011, the 10 Day Adventure had 3 people...Lynne, John and Chelsea
In summer 2012, 9 new people were here to experience the Magic of Tirol and it's mountains but especially the people...
CLASSIC TIROLEAN -
for 19-26 yr old was a BLAST of fun with Reannan and Valerie. A supreme mix and taste of everything Tirol has to offer for these Madls (girls in Austrian
Dialect). Included in the 10 Days were many stunning mountain hikes, Lumberjack
Yoga and Bootcamp, a little bit of Schnapps, a Silent Disco dancing night,
paragliding...even a hot sun bathing hang out by a mountain lake....Miss you
TIROLEAN MAGIC - took off with 4 fabulous men, 1 swedish goddess, myself SHERPA 1 and Simone who is SHERPA 2. I couldn't have dreamed for a better mix of people in which we created an instant FAMILY! It was MAGIC...It all started with the clanging of Espresso Machhiatos in SHERPA 1's Fav Cafe in Innsbruck, called SEGAFREDO. The welcome day finished with the clanging of Schnapps glasses at Franz and Vroni's Silberanch ...then another, then another...Franz just ROCKS! Here the 'on our knees' laughter began..and didn't stop the whole week. That was the best part! Along with the instant friendship and non stop laughter we enjoyed the following:
- grunting it out on some long steep climbs that were breathtaking,
- spontaneous Dancing spurts with DJ Stevo and Harbear down the mountains and in the Hut rooms
- sprints in flip flops to the train and/or bus stations
- luscious Knodel, snitzel and a Radler
- having SHERPA 2 – Simone Huettl from Bavaria as our Personal Schnapps and celebration HOST
- and she wins the big PRIZE for world’s BEST SHERPA (so attentive, patient and a bundle of laughs!!!….I know Harry would agree.
tons of Personal Reflections and unforgettable AHHHHH moments
Tirolean Magic finished it's 10 Days with a MOUNTAIN RACE - called KARWENDEL BERGLAUF - this is a Mountain Run competition that is approx. 11km straight up the Mountain...with our finishing shute being a 500m long Tunnel....it is steep, challenging and an exhilerating experience! The best part was watching my two boys run through the finish Shute - Stevo and Mikey! Sherpa 2 - Simone came in strong just ahead of me...Harry was our incredible support and photographer for the whole event!
Whenever I think of our time together...I cannot wipe the smile off my face. I am truly blessed to guide and PLAY with such a crazy good group!
Adventure #3 - Kress Kreation
- A Father and Son create an unforgettable Birthday Present in Munich, Tirol, and
I met Will and Jack (11yr old) for the first time at the Innsbruck Airport on the first day of our 5 Days together. Incredible down to earth people! Will and Jack had flown in from Wisconsin in their private jet and had invited me to start our Adventure with a 90min flight over all of the Alps ! Whoaaa How could I turn that down!- Dolomites in Italy, Swiss Alps (we saw the Matterhorn sticking right up through the clouds) and back over the Austrian ALps into Innsbruck (that was a white knuckled experience bouncing back into Innsbruck Airport!)...Of course the day finished with Franz's birthday party and much food and...well...welll Schnapps!
Then we did a Lantern Hike on the streets of Rietz (Base Camp for Livin Adventure)...perfect it was...the end of the first day. It was exciting to see
an 11 yr old so excited to be in the mountains!...and it is amazing what one can
do in 4 full days....a hike with the sheep above Innsbruck, a visit with Benno
and gang in his sheep's Hut..high above Rietz after a couple hours hiking, and
A two day Hut to Hut hike in the Stubai Alps - one of the days over 6 hours hiking over steep, rocky terrain, past sheep, glacier lakes and hundreds of Inukshuks (not sure how to spell). Jack even has the Tirolean Record at the Nuremberger Hut (Stubai Alps) of drinking 5 Hot chocolates over a couple hours! + 1 more for breakfast the next day! Congrats Jack!
When asked what do you want for your birthday present, Jack responded, I want to go to Germany! He is a history buff...and Will and Jack also had the opportunity to hang out with Klaus...the infamous lumberjack/forest ranger of Rietz..who is History obsessed!
In summary..I could never have dreamed of a better outcome for all 3 groups! I have this strong feeling that ALL OF THEM...at some point will be back to Rietz and Tirol...a seed of something WOW was planted in all of them. In fact, Paul, one of our boys from group 2 has returned NOW....only 3 weeks after his return to Canada.
Some words from
.'And, I for one, feel blessed in knowing some of the most kind and unselfish people I would ever have wanted to be with. Because, without you, I truly believe my horizons I attained would not have been possible - you ALL gave ME the courage, the time and the space, to take back myself - a person I loved and lost so many years ago - I am so truly grateful. My heart pours out and my eyes well, while I write this, because .......................... I have finally come home.'
I will leave my story at that...
I wish the best LIFE EXPERIENCES to you all and look forward to seeing many of you next year with SHERPA 1 and SHERPA 2 - LIVIN ADVENTURE in TIROL