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“The Road goes ever on and on
Out from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone.
Let others follow, if they can!
Let them a journey new begin.
But I at last with weary feet
Will turn towards the lighted inn,
My evening-rest and sleep to meet.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings


“At the heart of the Salzkammergut region, in the centre of Austria, lies the captivating World Heritage region of Dachstein Salzkammergut. The unique combination of the culture and settlement with breath-taking natural views won the region the UNESCO title of ‘historic cultural landscape of Hallstatt-Dachstein/Salzkammergut’ as a World Natural Heritage and Wold Cultural Heritage site.” Here in the Inner Salzkammergut region, the diverse landscapes of the Alps are reflected within a small area and the cultural significance of Hallstatt and its salt-based economy date back into pre-history. Even in the Bronze Age, this ‘white gold’ was mined and traded in the upper valley of Hallstatt. Exquisite finds from the so-called ‘graveyard’ confirm this and led researchers to name the entire culture of the time the ‘Hallstatt culture’. Later, salt became an important trade item for the Habsburg Monarchy – causing Salzkammergut to achieve special status within the Kingdom. A rich architectural and cultural heritage is derived from this long-standing tradition of salt mining and trade – all of which contributed to the region being named a World Cultural Heritage Site.

 

2014-09-14_0009 We ended up at the base of this mountain to explore. After doing most of the ascent in a cable car the previous climb in St. Gilgen, we badly wanted to do a long hike. Climb a mountain in the Alps, was a total bucketlist item for me. There were quite a few people at the base of the mountain and all of whom were taking the car up. Everyone we met discouraged us from climbing because they thought we were not equipped for it, didnt look the part and the area was slippery from the rain from the previous day. I started sulking and Harsha obliged. He was especially mad at me for my choice of shoes. In the name of minimalistic packing, i left my vibrams at home. And i paid the price for it along the hike. Everyone who advised us against it was right. We were under equipped, it was a hard climb and very slippery all along. But we had to do it.

“Adventures are not all pony-rides in May-sunshine.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien

2014-09-14_0010“It is not the strength of the body that counts, but the strength of the spirit.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien.

2014-09-14_0011“Little by little, one travels far” ― J.R.R. Tolkien.

2014-09-14_0014 “Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away, ere break of day,
To claim our long-forgotten gold.” 

― J.R.R. Tolkien.

2014-09-14_0013“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.”  

–J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring.

2014-09-14_0012“In western lands beneath the Sun
The flowers may rise in Spring,
The trees may bud, the waters run,
The merry finches sing.
Or there maybe ’tis cloudless night,
And swaying branches bear
The Elven-stars as jewels white
Amid their branching hair.”

2014-09-14_0015“And then her heart changed, or at least she understood it; and the winter passed, and the sun shone upon her.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King.

IMG_7146“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring.

IMG_1819“For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood in every spring
there is a different green.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

IMG_1830“Don’t adventures ever have an end? I suppose not. Someone else always has to carry on on the story.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring.