2022

Day 23 – The Mountains and Lakes Tour

Lofer to St Johann in Tirol, 28Km

Hotel Park, 76 euros

Lisa said the busy period in the Tirol (or Tyrol) is July and August plus the public holidays when a lot of people come over from Germany. “Are you taking the 21 euros breakfast?” she wanted to know. Not a chance with a little bakery/cafe immediately opposite.

It wasn’t a great day. A heavy rain fell all night and continued all day and it’s still raining. I wasn’t going to book a room on Booking.com for tonight because there are so many hotels in St Johann in Tirol and they are all empty. But while I was munching on my croissant I decided not to arrive soaked through after 28 gruelling kilometres only to start calling on every hotel to check their rates etc.. I booked the Hotel Park which was well located, cheapish and offered an inclusive breakfast experience.

Jakobsweg was well behaved at first. I followed a raging torrent of a river on a decent cycle track all the way to Waidring (10Km). Here I popped into a Spar store to buy lunch and another croissant (a fraction of the cost in a cafe) and then found a coffee shop for the cappuccino booster (3.60 euros for a small 3 sip cup, a small glass of water and a tiny plastic clad wafer biscuit. That price seems to be fixed throughout Austria).

After that I was led into the soaking long grass and then the waterlogged forest trails. The rain was falling and the clouds covered the dramatic scenery so I might have been in Surrey. By the time I returned to the cycle track I was saturated and all I could do was count down the kilometres to the Hotel Park.

Be careful what you wish for….,

The man at reception spoke good English; suspiciously good English. I enquired about having dinner to save going out. “Oh we only have a very limited menu, it’s only really for the hotel guests. I suggest you go to the Italian down the road. You’ll prefer it”.

After a long hot shower and washing of socks I came down and made a cup of green tea (no charge). It was then that the horror of the place confronted me. The name of the hotel, the free tea and the manager’s dire warning about dinner should have alerted me but now it was too late. A coach load of British tourists poured into the hotel, on a Mountains and Lakes tour. They’re planning their walks for tomorrow and will be crawling all over the hills, whatever the weather. It’s horrible. I’m preparing myself for a full English breakfast in the morning. From now onwards it’s going to be Austrian sounding guesthouses only.

Raging torrent, normal in this part of the world
Wet landscape but a good path to start
Open chapel
Wet muddy trail
Appropriate name for this trail
Quick flick but I stood here for ages watching at the force of water flowing by
Enough said

6 comments on “Day 23 – The Mountains and Lakes Tour

  1. Roger Clarkson

    Some nice photos between showers. Where does the train go?

    • It’s in St Johann in Tirol which I think is a bit of a centre for the Tirol resort area.

  2. even the raging torrent photo is spectacularly beautiful !

  3. Tassie Kaz

    Gorgeous scenery (& pics of course) ….the mist & crispness of colour brought on by the rain make it beautifully atmospheric.
    You’re a very experienced walker…so how are you going on the packing-gear-appropriateness front this trip?

    • Good question and not too well! I had to pack for all possible weather but this lot is unused: ultra lightweight down jacket, fleece, trek towel, sheet sleeping bag, first aid kit and battery pack. Also, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire Vols 1 to 6 by Edward Gibbons, Kindle edition

      • Tassie Kaz

        🤣 I’m hugely relieved you wrote ‘Kindle edition’ at the end of that….
        Maybe now you’re in Alp-ish country, some of that gear won’t just be pack ballast.
        Not needing your First Aid kit is of course, a good thing. 🤗

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