Grossglockner Ultratrail: Spontaneity at it’s best! 🙂
Trailrunning and running in general is one of our hobbies ever since and comes hand in hand with our passion for Obstacle Racing, but we just started participating in official trailrunning events in 2016. After our spontanous “first try” with the 25k Trail Half-marathon at Innsbruck Alpine Trailrun Festival in May, we immediately got addicted and added something new to our schedule. 🙂 As we always try to challenge ourselves, the 48k long and 2700hm steep Hochkönigman Marathontrail in Maria Alm followed in June.
To continue the fun – and as we weren’t able to continue our Seven European Summits Project that weekend due to the weather in Slowenia – we spontaneously signed up fo the Grossglockner Ultratrail 2016 two nights before! 😉
The “GGUT” or Grossglockner-Ultratrail is a trailrunning event taking runners around the Großglockner, Austria’s highest mountain and through the Nationalpark Hohe Tauern via three different distances: 30, 50 and 110km. We took the 50K long and 2000hm gaining “Grossglockner Trail” from Kals am Großglockner to Kaprun/Zell am See and were this time accompanied by Nici, a good friend and Spartan Race lover. 🙂
50km from Kals to Kaprun
Start of the run was in Kals at the foothills of the Großglockner at 7am, Saturday the 23rd July 2016. The starting shot was right in time and the first trails climbed uphill slowly, taking us from Kals through the beautiful Dorfertal at first.
We had perfect weather and an amazing scenery when we climbed up the first ascent of 1300 height meters. Passing the Matreier Tauernhaus, first stopp to fill up water, we slowly made our way uphill next and above a beautiful mountain lake and through blooming meadows.
After passing the Kalser Tauern and running for 18K, we reached the Berghotel Rudolfshütte, first checkpoint and supply station. We were all far ahead of the Cut-Off times and had time to enjoy some Tortellini. 🙂
Leaving Rudolfshütte, we first descended for around 400hm, just to immediately start climbing up another 700 again. 😉
In this section, the first runners of the 110K Ultra-Trail passed us.. They were already running since 12 at midnight, had made over 80K so far and were still A LOT faster than us – awesome people! Some of them we knew from Innsbruck and Maria Alm and it was great to see them excel themselves!
The second ascent took us up to the “Kapruner Törl”, highest point of the run and doorway to the Kapruner reservoirs area. The 700 height meters were gained fast, but still half the distance was in front of us. With the height, the snow came and many smaller and bigger snowfield were to cross.
Kitzsteinhorn and Kaprun: WE MADE IT!
From Kapruner Törl it was 25K only downhill with an amazing scenery around us. The Großglockner in the back and the Kapruner Stauseen and Kitzsteinhorn in front, we made our way to the second checkpoint at K34.
From the second station there were still 16K left! The descent to Kaprun/Zell am See was long, in some parts steep and tiring. Passing the last reservoir at Kitzsteinhorn, in winter a famous ski destination, many serpentines lead us back into the woods.
Crossing the finish line in the heart of Kaprun was just amazing – this is a thing that never gets odd. 🙂
We all three made it and with perfect weather and sunshine, we celebrated another great day on trails. We met so many old and new friends with the same passion: Passion for mountains, sports and nature. And we want to encourage everybody to challenge theirselves and try it out. At the beginning of 2016, we both would’ve never thought that we would run such distances with such an elevation gain EVER – and now we do and we love it! 🙂
After the award ceremony of the 30 and 50K distances, we took the shuttle bus from Kaprun back to Kals. Fortunately we stayed in Matrei in Eastern Tyrol, which is only a 20 minute drive from Kals and on the way back from Zell am See and therefore a perfect base for this year’s 50K distance. The great equipped Hotel Rauter where we stayed in, was the perfect spot before and after the race and we rewarded ourselvers with a great Sunday at the pool! 🙂
It was our third trailrun in total and one more unforgettable experience – WE WILL BE BACK!
We also took a short video which you can find on our YOUTUBE-Channel, have fun watching: