Ascent of Hochstadl on 2022-01-15

Climber: Jörn Fiege

Other People:Solo Ascent
Date:Saturday, January 15, 2022
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
    Elevation:6296 ft / 1919 m

Ascent Trip Report

Hochstadl is the highest peak of the Ybbstaler Alpen and at 1919m well above treeline. The shortest ascent route is clearly directly from the South, yet that did not seem a viable option with snow shoes in winter. However, I had found reports on winter ascents of the peak from Dürradmer in the NE and figured I might well give it a try.

To get to the starting point drive from Mariazell in a W direction, leaving the main road at Greith. From here it was approx. 4.5km on packed snow to my starting point just before Dürradmer, i.e. Fangbrücke. Hochstadl is signposted at 4:00 hours walking time (in summer) here already.

Hence, no issues in route finding. The initial half of the trip is a bit dull along the forest road up the Nappenbach valley. Once the Kräuterinhütte is reached the terrain finally got more interesting, soon reaching the wide trough between Fadenkamp to the right (North) and Graskogel to the left (South). Eventually, Hochstadl comes into view, looking quite impressive across the wide plateau.

Easiest ascent in winter is along the ridge. The final push to the summit got much steeper but could be navigated reasonably well. Guess that in adverse conditions crampons could be useful. Peculiary, the summit cross is not positioned at the highest point, which is about 250m or so further down the plateau. Two summit registers, one trig point - and excellent views.

Did not linger around too long for the wind chill was substantial. Overall, a very pleasant trip and from Kräuterinalm onward highly recommended. Only met three other parties that day, one of which had been heading for Fadenkamp instead. Hochstadl is probably not too attractive for skiers as there are quite a few flat sections and re-ascents whereas snow shoers will have to bring a bit of endurance - but if you got that it is worth a visit!
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3966 ft / 1207 m
    Extra Gain:164 ft / 49 m
    Round-Trip Distance:12.1 mi / 19.4 km
    Route:trail 289 (via Kräuterinhütte)
    Trailhead:Dürradmer / Fangbrücke  2658 ft / 810 m
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Snow on Ground
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles, Snowshoes
    Weather:Cool, Windy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Time:3 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 30 Minutes

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