Like a little city monkey, I hang from the steep cliff face, clinging to the rock. It feels cold and rough, but comforting. 500m above the ground, I am strapped into my climbing harness on the Huterlaner via ferrata, high above Mayrhofen. I’ve got a few butterflies in my stomach but I feel free and energised. I’m in another world: Tyrol! In the mountains I feel footloose and free. I can leave the stresses of everyday life behind me. As a German city girl, my only experience of mountains is from books, I have only heard stories of summit expeditions, and I have only felt this freedom in my dreams. It feels as if I am hanging between two worlds: my usual German vista and the liberating Tyrolean mountain scenery.
Family Via Ferrata for the Brave
I tread on the next foothold, grasp at the rock face above me, and climb step by step up the steep cliff. The Hutelaner via ferrata is suitable for both beginners and experienced climbers, as well as for children from 10 years old. Even on hot summer days, it is a refreshing climb, as the surrounding trees provide dappled shade from the glaring sun. The 210 altitude metres sound so easy, but shouldn’t be underestimated: surefootedness, a good head for heights and good physical fitness are a must. A little bravery is also recommended!
After almost an hour I reach the top. Full of energy and bursting with adrenaline, I clip my carabiner off the last cable. I am back on solid ground and notice how my muscles relax. Everything seems light and easy, and I feel courageous and strong. Climbing is like a drug. On an adrenaline high, I descend to the valley on the adjacent forest path.
Mayrhofen – prettier than a picture
As I get to the bottom, Peter, my personal chauffeur, is waiting with his “Four Seasons” taxi to take me to the next highlight of my holiday. I can’t wait to see what else awaits me in Mayrhofen. There’s so much to see and explore here: mountains and valleys, meadows and forests. It really is prettier than a picture!