Transalp stage 5: Top of the pass Rabbijoch
St.Walburg - St.Gertraud - Rabbijoch - Dimaro (49 km, 1560 altitude metres)
We get up very early ion the morning, as a very exhausting stage is waiting for us today. We already start at 08.00 a.m. We have to get up the complete Ultental and there is a lot of motorway on the way.
The Tarscher pass would have been an alternative to this stretch, over which one gets far back into the Untental. But this would have meant that we should have to stay over one more night and/or a side trip. This is why we prefer to take the traffic on the main road.
The first kilometres are very steep, the sun burns and there is no shade. The road is very curvy and the strong raffic does not make it better. I feel really relived when we arrive at St. Gertraud (1400 m) and have a small break there. I have a cappucino and continue on my own, as the others want to give me a headstart on the way uo to the Rabbijoch.
Ascend to the Rabbijoch
I leave the road at St. Gertraud and continue cycling on a forest road. Es geht weiter steil bergan, aber ich fühle mich hervorragend und komme gut voran. Auf der Bärhapalm esse ich zu Mittag (Nudeln natürlich, was sonst?) und fülle meine Getränkeflaschen auf. Dort holen mich die anderen auch wieder ein.
The way gets increasingly steeper and rougher, some deep gravel does not make it easier to get ahead. I give up after some hundred metres and push my bike. It is good to know that the others of the group push their bikes too. Only Jochen and Christian bravely continue striggling, but also give up after some hairpin bends. From time to time there are some rain drops but in front of us at the top of the pass, the sun is still shining. At the very top, at the end of the valley, there is a huge cross made of stone. But it is not the Rabbijoch, as we all hoped. There, the way continues a little. Only a small signpost with the inscription "Rabbijoch 2467 m" indicated the pass height. We get there around 02.00 p.m. and are happa to be finally up there. it is a nice feeling to be at a height of more than 2000 m with the mountain bike. This is not usual!
The Haselgruber hut
There are big clouds obscuring the sky. The Haselgruber hut is certainly still not at sight, but it cannot be too far anymore. We continue being a litte insecure and shortly afterwards, we get to a samll house that is well hidden behind a small hilltop. Finally, we reached the warm hut!
We get completely changed and decide then to have some spaguetti bolognese and an apple strudel as a desert. The food is very good and we can only recommend this hut. There are also some places to stay over night, but it is recommendable to phone and book previously, as the hat is very frequently visited and most of the times fully booked. We are not going to stay as after a long and exhausting ascent we look forward to a dream trial descent to the Rabbital,and will continue from there on a gravel path up to Male and Dimaro where our hotel is wating.
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Author: Kirsten Huber; Copyright: Patrick Wagner, www.tourist-guide.biz