Yet another horribly hot day, but nice in the morning when going by the Hintersee out of Ramsau here in the photo. A bit later along this road one comes to a turnpike as access to the Hirschbihlstrasse is limited. There is no problem going over the Hirschbichl (1169m) pass on a bicycle apart from the steepness awaiting you here on both sides.
The road is sort of flat for a long time before it finally starts to climb. At first not so steep, but eventually you come to a place where it is up to 27%. Just here I passed by two mountain bikers finding it difficult and was just saying something like, here we have to spend a little effort to get up :-). But this section is not very long and given the extreme steepness up Bad Dürrnberg the day before, this felt rather easy.
Once up at the crossroads just next to the pass height, I turned right onto the gravel road that climbs a bit higher. The road is decently good and could be used with a road bike. The pass in this direction is called Hufnagei (1267m) (Hufnagel the map says, but believe it should be Hufnagei). The highest point is reached a little after this pass (photo here).
Here we are at the highest point – Eiblkreuzung (1273m), where one has the best views on this road. I met several mountain bikers on this road but no road bikers.
Another fine view from the top.
One could climb up on another asphalt road to the houses above here near another pass (but only a path to the pass there). Difficult getting this photo right. I continued down to Lofer (625m), where it was horribly hot. I went into to a grocery and bought the usual coca-cola and yoghurt and then had to walk a while into the village to find a place not in the sun (seemed like there were no escape from the sun this day).
Sat down on a cut down tree log by a house and talked a little with a local lady coming by with her dog before I went ahead up the Loferer Alm. This is also a toll road higher up.
It is a fairly step climb and a bit uneven. It became a bit easier with the heat higher up. There is a steep ramp up near the end and then again and ever-steep ramp on very bad asphalt up to Schönbühel. The very last bit was too bad and steep and then the last stretch on the gravel road is not too good for a road bike, but walked up to the top for improved views all around.
The Danish lady in the photo above took the photo of me here. Finally looking a bit more fit.
The last part of the road goes down here to the right. Nice mountains on the other side of the valley I was going to cycle through later. A photo of the same place with the bicycle instead of me.
Here I am looking back down to the Loferer Alm (sattel) (1458m).
Another photo in the direction of another nearby climb I had originally planned to do (also a BIG climb) to Steinplatte (1677m). That climb should be somewhat similar to this one and possibly with even better views, but choose this as one could claim to have reached a pass on this climb (but again no real pass name known here).
This is down the other side of the Loferer Alm (sattel) (1458m) where only a track (or gravel road) descends.
At the pass itself.
Looking down the Loferer Alm and valley I had climbed up. I stopped again for a Hollunder soda and maybe apfelstrudel too.
Here is the sign for Loferer Alm before the last hopeless stretch to the Schönbühel (the part you see is nice and easy).
Great views on the way down. I think this is just below the toll booth.
Then I continued westward over two small unnamed saddles: Schredergasse (779m), where the road goes up to Steinplatte, and after cruising through St. Johann in Tirol, Ellmau (March) (790m). Then a descent on a busy road with some road work to Söll (693m). Here I finally stopped again by the big grocery near the main road and got something to drink, yoghurt and maybe something more. Now it was time to do some climbing again. Slightly mixed feelings about this climb, but it should be one the highest paved pass I had not done before in Austria, even if unnamed and the last stretch was supposed to be gravel.
Here up at the pass which is simply signposted ‘Tafel Wegkreuzung’ (1571m). It was a very nice climb on a minor good road, however. Also the last part to the pass had been asphalted, so it was all asphalted. There were, however, one problem: there were two cattle grids to handle not far below the top and they were unusually nasty since the normal round iron rolls/bars? had a sharpish iron edge in the middle making them ideal to get a snake bite flat when running over them. I guess the risk is low for a problem there, but I was not willing to take the chance and walked over them both ways.
The above photo was in the direction I came from up here. This photo is down in the direction of the saddle I passed over on the way to Söll. Great views from here!
Here is in the direction of Kitzbühel and a little lake up here.
The mountain across the valley here might be Kitzbüheler Horn with its famously very steep road to near 2000m, but it looks a bit small from here.
I am pretty sure Kitzbüheler Horn (1996m) is the mountain behind the nearby top (Rauher Kopf) in this photo. This photo was taken from the Jochstub’n by the Holzalmjoch (1640m), which is best reached via the road that climbs up to the right when reaching the Brandstadl saddle. It is an easy gravel road even for a road bikers, apart from one steep ramp up just before reaching this little pass. I had a hollunder soda there too, but they were not really open, so nothing more.
This is a little beyond the restaurant on the other way to the Brandstadl saddle, which is shorter and starts a bit before reaching the pass (last road going off the road before the pass and where the asphalt used to end earlier). However this shorter road should be much less good, even if it looks okay from here where I had hoped to find a marker for the Holzalmjoch. Kompass maps makes it the mountain top you come very near after the steep ramp and from where there is a short descent to the restaurant, but the regional maps gives the mountain another name and thus the pass should be called Holzalmjoch as it is also noted near this sign.
The little dam by the Jochstub’n and pass.
Going back down you see it is a lovely road with views down to the Unterinntal (the huge valley up via Innsbruck). Now the temperatures were finally lovely again also. Back on the main road I hurried down to Wörgl to catch a train there as quickly as possible in order to try and get up the Inntal without having to cycle through it once again and ideally to get passed Innsbruck. Of course it took a bit longer than expected, but it went fairly fast. Only got minimally wrong before finding the station.
Bought a ticket for Telfs, which was the end station for the train from here and not caring about when I would be there. Had time to buy a pizza slice and exchange some words with a local before getting on the train. At last I could relax a bit and listen to music while slowly going up the long valley. When I finally arrived at Telfs it was heavy twilight already (around 9 pm). I just did not want to stay in the centre and started out on the road up to the next pass as planned, but instead of trying to get up there, which would have been nice if I had been there one and a half hours earlier or so, I instead stopped by a hotel at the outskirt of Telfs a bit on the way. It didn’t look like the best and was also not so cheap, but it had to do and it was ok. Two days left to go now (not what I had in mind, but).