Sunday 23 August 2015
Rifugio Kostner at Vallon 2,500m. 8000 feet
We travel by bus, cable car and chair lift to the hut with our very big bags that contain everything we need for 2 weeks of climbing and walking. These bags made the last leg of our journey quite difficult, as we had to hoist them very quickly onto the small 2 seater chair lift that didn’t stop. I was terrified of not getting mine on fast enough, and it was so big that it was pushing me off my seat as the lift fly away above the field s and into the mist. We couldn’t both get one one chair so we had to go separately.
We walk off the chair lift in the mist and we can see nothing. We have to get the compass out to navigate to the hut. When we do arrive, the refuge is lovely and warm and welcoming. We have a small room at the pointed apex of the hut all woody, with a skylight.
It is raining nearly all the time we are at this hut, so after a while we decide to go out anyway and try to find the start of the Lichtenfelsersteig Via Ferrata. The signposts are confusing, seeming to lead in a circle, and the mist is so thick we can see no features around us to help.
The meal cooked by the hut wardens is fantastic, with candles, atmosphere, appetisers, snacks, drinks, At the end the hosts got a big round of applause.
The thick mist, cold and rain persists all evening. We go out again after the first foray and finally manage to find the base of the via Ferrata – the easy one. Some people are coming off it in the rain.