Statistics: mileage 9 1/2 miles ascent 2051′ descent 3054′ 7 1/2 hours
After an enjoyable overnight stay at Guttenberghaus, we bid farewell to our host, Gunter, who runs the refuge in the summers and teaches cross country skiing during the winters.
We walked back up the mountain to rejoin the trail at Feisterscharte Gap overlooking the vast Am Stein landscape.
We navigated our way through very rocky terrain throughout most of the morning.
The rocks gave way to mountainsides covered in scrubby little pine trees, an interesting change of landscape.
Next, wide open views toward mountain peaks of unusual shapes drew our attention.
Soon the trail opened out onto wild mountain meadows interspersed with short trees, ice-melt ponds, and rocky outcroppings.
We arrived at Grafenbergalm in time for a much-needed snack.
Grafenbergalm was run by the amiable Bolda and his pet chicken, Bertha. Bertha greeted us all and was most willing to be held. Bolda had created an elderberry drink which we found very refreshing.
Leaving the alm we passed by several clear alpine lakes. From a distance, these are like emeralds in the forest.
For the remainder of the afternoon we walked through some lovely forests on the trail to the Stoderzinken.
With a final 20 minute uphill push, we arrived at the inviting Berg Gästhof Steinerhaus, a very comfortable mountain inn with an outstanding dinner menu!