Propst Wieser Weg 30
Völlan/Lana near Meran
in South Tyrol
F +39 0473 568143 .
www.alpiana.com . VAT-ID
This adventure is not the thing for grumpy sleepyheads.
It is 4.30 am and the shrill sound of the alarm clock goes off. This adventure is not the thing for grumpy sleepyheads. It is dark outside. A light burns in the warm ‘Stube’. A morning cup of coffee? No time for that. Punctuality is all-important.
Leaving by car from Lana. While our day is just beginning, last night’s Saturday night revellers are making their way home and looking forward to falling into their beds.
Up the hill we drive. 25 minutes on empty roads. Once at Gampenpass we are spoilt for choice, as there are plenty of parking spaces to be had.
With hiking boots tightly laced up and head lamps switched on, we share out our supplies to make our rucksacks lighter.
Then we set off. The path crunches underfoot. We have chosen to take the most direct route in order not to miss the precious moment. Practically vertical, you could say. You can hear each labouring breath in the silent countryside. Maybe we’re not so fit after our summer’s training after all. The path begins in the wood. The air is pure and fresh. A veil of fog enshrouds us. The forecast was blue skies and sunshine. Suddenly it gets light over the wood and we catch a glimpse of the moon. A rabbit, or perhaps a squirrel, flits through the undergrowth. Beneath us the fog forms an opaque blanket, as if the Etsch river valley were an endless lake. Our eager anticipation increases. Life has its precious moments.
Once at the small lake we have to make a choice. Left up to the mountain peak or right by the somewhat easier option. South Tyroleans like to have choices.
Once at the top we have to keep warm, with every layer making us feel a bit better. The view across the valley seems endless, the sea of fog like an apparition. Sweat and tiredness melt away. Sometimes you have to grit your teeth and get on with it if you want to experience something.
Good friends know how to entertain themselves. That morning cup of coffee? Plenty of time for that. The mountains begin to light up in the background, meaning that the first rays of sunshine will soon be here.
And then, like a dream, the moment we’ve all been waiting for. The sun slowly rises up over the distant Dolomite peaks. A majestic sight. People can achieve many things, but nature is capable of more. Sunrise over the ‘Kleiner Laugen’ peak – a moment to treasure.