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Monday, November 22, 2010

Its Almost more than a month now in Europe, and almost every weekend I had been to some or the other place for sight seeing.  Also visited to some neighboring European countries too and found that almost all the countries looks more IMG_2042jpgIMG_2042jpgIMG_2042-1or less the same especially one non-ignorable similarity is all of them have their history as main attractions. After covering most of the tourist towns, stumbled across the official Austrian website and in particular the Vienna [wien] official website and one particular topic caught my immediate attention, that's  hiking in and around Vienna and its beautiful Woods. After going through the details, finally decided to try Hiking/Trekking in one of the trails which is laid out by Forest Department here in Vienna. This  particular path includes some part of city and most part of Vienna woods and reserved an weekend for it.

The Day:
Sunday; 27th Nov the day was set for this hike, which is of 11Kms in distance and includes some 30% of outskirts of city and 70% of Vienna woods. And obviously this is special for me in many ways, it’s my first hike outside India,and I’m the first Bangalore ASCENDers (BASC) member who is organizing an event outside India. Hopefully this new trend of hiking in Europe will followed by many soon. By the time I packed everything and left my room it was almost 11AM in the morning and outside weather was bit cold and cloudy [A typical European Winter]. The route which I choose was from Station "Ottakring - Ottakring" whicIMG_2105jpgIMG_2105jpgIMG_2105-1h covers many places. Took a underground train [U3 Ottakring] to reach the start point, which was incidentally the last stop of this train. Once you come out of Underground train station, you will enter the street and just before the street found a big board from Forest Department giving complete route map of the hike; this made me bit relaxed, and after 10 min loafing the place started the hike.

The Hike:
As I started I had the map and name of each check points which needs to be crossed along the way; the initial start was in the city and as it was Sunday there were very few people on the road, unlike in India where for us weekends are meant to be on the roads. Experienced this cultural difference since I come out on weekends [LOL...hate to stay inside during weekends]. One more thing to notice is the weather as it was winter there was lot of coldness in the air. When I reached the 3rd checkpoint, started to notice the difference in the surroundings in term of buildings, roads and the way the city is built. Here it’s very calm and beautiful and each house is independent with lush fresh wine-yards and the terrain is hilly, which made me more relaxed and happy. All this time since from the start point was very much eager to see the Vienna Woods and now its almost very much near, as I cld sense the freshness of air, fragrance of wild and woods and also cold had increased now.

Nature Always Wins Over Man Made Wonders:
After almost one and half hour of hike reached Vienna woods entrance and was filled with joy after seeing it. Took some time to relax
IMG_2090jpgIMG_2090jpgIMG_2090-1 a bit and checked near by boards which explains the path that needs to be taken for different destinations through Vienna woods and also spoke to few fellow trekkers about the details of this hike. As the entire path is laid by Forest Department  they have made good markings along the way on every couple of kms with different color paint on trees for the each path. Later also came to know that in deeper woods they have put up separate boards to indicating the hike path. As I started the hike in woods was very much surprised to see many ppl walking in these woods which made me 100% worry-less and here the coldness in the air increased exponentially. As it was winter all the trees had lost leaves and stood there bare and the ground was totally covered with the dead leaf, the view of these sky high trees was really mesmerizing. When reached deep in to woods the visibility narrowed down and cld barely see 10 feet ahead, the fog engulfed and the chill of the winds made me freeze. Although I had brought good winter jacket and glouse, the freezing cold numbed my face and ears and it started to pain for a while before the view around made me to forgeIMG_2089jpgIMG_2089jpgIMG_2089-1t it. During the hike in these woods one can take ample time to relax and enjoy the landscape and every now and then one is able to see few hikers in groups and as well as solo.
After almost two hours spending in the Vienna woods, reached my next check point which enters the city again and I must say this part of city is also equally beautiful as other side from were I started into the woods.
Finally after covering all the checkpoints, reached the entry point from where I started the trek,and was damn happy about my adventure :)

Summary:
1. This was my best weekend ever in Europe, and this place scores num 1 in my list.
2. I suggest everyone who visits Europe to explore the possibilities of hike/trek. Trust me you will not regret it.
3. The route which taken was U3-Ottakring --> Thaliastraße --> Gallitzinstraße --> Funkengerngasse --> Rolandweg --> Johann-Staud-Straße --> Pelzer Rennweg --> Andergasse --> Eselstiege --> Savojenstraße --> Sprengersteig --> Paulinensteig --> Wilhelminenstraße --> Kollburggasse --> Erdbrustgasse --> Ottakringer Straße --> Weinheimergasse --> U3-Ottakring
4. Total trek distance 11Kms
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Written by: Nagoo (Courtesy: http://nagoo-trek.blogspot.com/)
Event organized by: Nagoo
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