Water in its most breath-taking form – as glacial ice it has for many hundreds of years covered the wide expanses of the high mountains in the Hohe Tauern, opening up a breath-taking realm of adventure. In total there are 342 glaciers which characterise the entire area in the Hohe Tauern National Park, as at 2015 it was 10% – i.e., 173 km², of the park is covered by glacial ice.
How does the glacial ice come about?
Glaciers form in the high mountain areas, in the places where the summer temperatures are not high enough to melt the fallen snow. Year after year the layers of snow are deposited on top of one another, solidifying with the increasing pressure to form ice. Glaciers do not move, but they are not motionless, like every other form of water, they are in flux and move slowly, yet continually, towards the valley.
Glacier trekking on the Pasterze
Even 150 years ago it stretched to Heiligenblut and today it is still the longest glacier in the East Alps and is probably the most famous mountain panorama in the Hohe Tauern, the Pasterze. Feel the power and mysteriousness of this impressive glacier and follow a mountain guide on a glacier trekking tour across the Pasterze. Equipped with crampons and ice pick, head into the eternal ice, where interesting facts and impressive views and insights await you.
Grossglockner Glacier Cable Car
At the end of the Großglockner High Alpine Road and the start of your glacier tour to the Pasterze is the real attraction in the Hohe Tauern National Park. In days past, people travelled using the glacier cable car from Kaiser Franz Josefs Höhe into the eternal ice, today, after the descent, a walk is still required since the ice has retreated. In spite of this, the glacier cable car has lost none of its inspiration and appeal, continuing to transport visitors and holiday-makers into the realm of the eternal ice.
Pasterze Glacier Trail
The Pasterze Glacier Trail is “the” classic among the themed trails in the Hohe Tauern National Park. Without exposing yourself to any Alpine dangers, you can get really close to the eternal ice of the Pasterze and feel with your own body how the power of nature is at work here. The glacier trail starts at Kaiser Franz Josefs Höhe and proceeds without any technical challenges into the realm of eternal ice. A breath-taking journey through the time of the last Ice Age, at the foot of the Großglockner.
Mölltal Glacier Erlebnis 3000
A resounding name – after ascending via the ‘Gletscherexpress’ and the ‘Eisseebahn’, you can look forward to fantastic adventures above 3000m. The summit at 3122m is conveniently accessible via chairlift. Winter sports fans will be delighted with Carinthia’s only year-round ski area, whereas hikers and mountain lovers will want to get the Alpine paths in the high mountains under their mountain boots. Or maybe you would prefer to relax in the panorama restaurant and enjoy the legendary views?
Year-round ski area – Mölltal Glacier
The Mölltal Glacier is the highest and most snow-assured ski mountain in the south side of the Alps in Austria. In Carinthia’s only glacier ski area, skiers can look forward to very well-prepared pistes and superb glacier slopes from late summer right into spring. 17 pistes and 9 lift facilities, a Snow Park and fantastic free ride lines provide perfect ski fun. Up to 13 kilometres of pistes are open in the summer months too for skiing – as long as the snow conditions allow!