If I close my eyes, I can still hear the sound of the soft, fresh snow crunching under my ski boots as I trudge to the Mühlbach lift station. Then I see the magnificent alpine panorama of the Hochkönig rising up before me and suddenly I feel a sense of glorious anticipation about the day to come. We meet just after seven by the cable car, and that’s an experience in its own right: not having to queue for the lift, but being able to get up the mountain straight away with no stress, no crowds and just a small, friendly group for company.
A Very Special Feeling
And the view during the ascent! There wasn’t a single track in the snow, just the occasional print of a rabbit’s paw. It’s so romantic and idyllic it’s almost kitschy. For a moment, when you step out of the lift at the top, the view leaves you lost for words. “It’s an amazing feeling,” Sebastian Nadeje from the Hochkönig Bergbahnen had promised me – and he certainly hadn’t been exaggerating: stretched out at my feet, the pristine slopes. Mountain peaks glowing in the first rays of sunlight. The glittering snow.
As If on a Smooth, White Carpet
And then the first downhill run. In three groups, we carve our way down the Schneealm, and then onward to the Fellersbachalm and to the Kings Cab cable car. My curves are fantastic! Today, not even my calves ache - I’m not a particularly fit skier. It can only be because the slopes are like a soft smooth carpet. Or has my technique really improved so much this skiing holiday? At half past nine and after two glorious hours in the powder snow, I take a break at the Karbachalm. And here too, I can have the same magnificent view of the mountains! But now I have a stupendous breakfast to go with it! Getting up early was really worth it!