Tag Archives: trekking

Valle Maira a jewel !

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Valle Maira – Maira Valley hiking:
We just came back from hiking in the Maira Valley / Valle Maira  a forgotten jewel and rediscovered luckily. It´s often revered as the a black spot in Europe be-cause of only 2 inhabitants per km2 but it is recovering from that status. Before and after the WWII the area was more and more abandoned and houses and land were left behind. The Schneiders a german couple found this jewel around 1980 and with the help of some extraordinary personalities from the valley they founded the Percorsio Occitani a connection of treks and posto tappas (shelter and some of best food + wine on this planet).

We met great people there, had a glimpse into a forgotten culture had great food and wine and will for sure continue this amazing experience within the next years. The combination of extraordinary trekking, culture and good food (wine) is just too unique!

Gränsfors Bruks – Wildlife Hatchet

Gränsfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet sharpening on wetstoneGränsfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet in grain leather sheat  Gränsfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet logoGränsfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet blacksmith signature MMGränsfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet cuts easily through paperGränsfors Bruks – Wildlife Hatchet:
It was time to give my buddy a bit of care. So it got a treatment on the wet stone. Now its close to razor-sharp again. Sorry I would have made the tomato test, like with kitchen knifes but no tomatoes available.

How to start this story about the ultimate outdoor companion?
Ok about 10 years ago I got a hint from a good friend about this company and their axes. A research in the net showed me some addresses and I decided to buy it at Lauche & Maas because they are a real down to earth outdoor company. A call there and the guy on the phone told me they are out of stock because it is winter. What ? He explained to me that the blacksmith hammer at Gränsfors is driven by water and in winter there river is frozen up in Sweden, so no axe. This really fixed me to get hold of one of their axes.

Every axe/hatchet has got the smith mark on the head and comes with a lifetime guarantee (MM for this one). My one, the wildlife hatchet has got a tough grain leather sheath and a hickory handle. It is about 26 cm long in total and weights about 700g. The size and the weight is just perfect. While weekend Rambos with their Bowie knifes are getting blisters by carving their marshmallow sticks, you have already cut town a tree with this hatchet. A serious tool, and probably the biggest danger on our trips when late at night and after some red wine someone goes away from the campfire to chop more wood.

Ah and not to forget, due to it sharpness it is great as a rough tool for shaping wood before you use chiseling tools and start carving.

Just found a guy who filmed his visit at Gränsfors Bruks.

fuc* fog but worth to do the climb …

foggy day but climbing was ok - sun behind the trees with the fogfoggy day but climbing was ok - sun behind the trees with the fog anotherfoggy day but climbing was ok - maria and kitty in the middle of fog and sunfoggy day but climbing was ok - the mountains of germany and austria peaking through the clouds Sunday was not a day to leave the house. Foggy, cold, time for a long breakfast and hanging around in the house doing this and that. But thanks to Maria who insisted to climb a bit higher – leave the lake and maybe have some sun over the clouds/fog. The hike itself is a quite path trough the forrest, away from the masses who also had the idea to escape the darkness. Luckily after about 2 1/2 hours and just below the peak, the sun made it trough the clouds and we were rewarded with a perfect blue sky and sunshine. So what ? It´s always worth to do it.

Hiking – Sibratsgfäll – “Austrian summer”

Sibratzsgfäll Schönenbach kapelleSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach frozen leafSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach autumn leafes1Sibratzsgfäll Schönenbach autumn leafes2Sibratzsgfäll Schönenbach autumn leafes3Sibratzsgfäll Schönenbach moss on dead treeSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach subersach riverbedSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach moss in the forestSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach river subersach looks like canadaSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach swamp or hochmoorSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach fliegenpilz mushroomSibratzsgfäll Schönenbach schilfLast weekend we went for a autumn hike to the Bregenzerwald – Austria and walked from Sibratzgfäll to Schönenbach. It’s the perfect walk in autumn and for snowshoe because you walk in a not to hilly valley by the river with a nice flora beside. It was like an “Indian Summer” in Canada, just in Austria. Thanks to Maria and “Kitty the dog” to drag me out of the bed for this walk. The night before there was quite a party going on with a traditionally dish for autumn “Zwiebelkuchen & Most” (German cider and a cake with lots of onions, bacon an cumin).


Pocket knife – lost & found

lost pocket knife massoptier thiers found itTwo weeks ago I lost my favorite pocket knife, a French one from Massoptier – Thiers. The knife is special, I bought it on a rugby trip to Montélimar where I played quite well and which also marked the end of my rugbytime.

I lost it while taking a break during hiking in the Alps. Luckily it was a not to popular place and I did not make too many breaks. So the options where to look for the knife where not to many. The knife was lying exactly on the grass, real easy to spot. So mission accomplished and after a bit of cleaning an some Balistol the knife looks even better with some new patina.