Tag Archives: Austria

Hiking in the Dolomites, Part 2

The next morning, Jennifer and I took the train from Innsbruck down to Bolzano, Italy.

This part of Italy is called the Südtirol in German and Trentino/Alto Adige in Italian.  For a thousand or so years before the end of World War I, this area was part of Austria-Hungary and its predecessor states.  The primary languages in this area are German, Italian, and Ladin.

ToBozen

_DSF0109
View from the train to Balzano

Once in Bolzano, we met the rest of our party.  The trip was organized by our friend Kerrick James, a professional photographer and Ricoh Imaging Ambassador (Ricoh owns the well-respected camera brand Pentax).  See more about Kerrick at Ricoh Imaging Ambassadors, KerrickJames.com, and KJ Photo Safaris.  Kerrick’s fiancée, Julie, joined us, along with three other photographers who had traveled with Kerrick in the past.  Also joining us was our guide, Hayden, from our outfitter, AlpineHikers.

_DSF0113Statue of the poet Walther von der Vogelweide in Bolzano

For the next three nights, we stayed at the Hotel Kabis, in Val di Funes.  Before we piled into a waiting taxi van, I ran to the grocery  store and picked up an excellent €8 bottle of wine to take with us, a Lagrein from Kellerei Bozen.

ToKabis

That evening, the weather started to turn.  The partly cloudy and warm days were giving way to overcast skies and threats of rain.

When that happens, I turn to my infrared camera.  I have a Nikon D300 that I’ve had converted to infrared by LifePixel.com.  (I encourage you to use that affiliate link if you’re interested in converting or buying an infrared camera.  I get a small credit towards a future conversion.)  The conversion process removes a filter in front of the camera sensor, and replaces it with one that only passes infrared light.  The resulting images can bring out dramatic skies and landscapes.  The image below, from the cemetery at Pfarrkirche St. Peter, is an example.

_DSC6176 v2The cemetery at Pfarrkirche St. Peter in Villnöß

Next up, hiking around Santa Magdalena.

Hiking in the Dolomites, Part 1

From June 23 to July 5, I was in Europe, mostly hiking and photographing around the Dolomites, in the Alps of Northern Italy.

I met my friend and travel partner, Jennifer, in Munich.  She and I have been on several photography trips together—Utah, Alaska, Vermont, New Mexico, Hawaii.  Once we got to Italy, we would meet our friend and pro photographer, Kerrick James (http://kerrickjames.com/ and http://kjphotosafaris.com/) and a few others for the remainder of the trip.

But first, we spent the day in Munich.  We stayed at the Hotel Torbraü, near Isartor, and not far from the Marienplatz.  Despite advertising itself as the oldest hotel in the heart of Munich (since the year 1490), it was quite nice and convenient.

_DSF0045Hotel Torbraü

_DSF0044Marienplatz

After lunch, we met my friend, Rahman, and toured parts of the city that I’d never been to before.  We finished with a walk around part of the Englischer Garten, before returning to the hotel to get an early dinner and some much needed sleep.

The next morning, we departed by train for Innsbruck.  I’d been to Vienna, Graz, and Salzburg before, but never Innsbruck, and this was a convenient halfway point between Munich and our starting point in Italy.

_DSF0078Central Innsbruck

_DSF0070Griffon at Rudolfsbrunnen.  The statue behind, from 1863, commemorates the 500th anniversary of Tyrol joining Austria.

We had a difficult night’s sleep at the hotel, the Gasthof Weisses Rössl.  It was a warm day in Innsbruck, and the hotel was not air-conditioned.  Further, the windows did a better job of keeping the warm air in, and the cooler air outside out.

_DSF0081Hotel of the White Horse.

Still, the rooms were nicely and interestingly done on the inside.  Here’s a photo of one of the walls.  To the left of the television is a wall with a plexiglas front, with the gap filled with salt.  To the right, a similar panel, with the gap filled with peppercorns.

_DSF0096The Salt and Pepper Walls

Next stop, Italy.  Stay tuned.