Wednesday, September 27, 2006

More about the Garmisch trip 

(Backdated so things stay in order!)

The second day in Garmisch we decided to drive down into Austria, quite the steep drive into Innsbruck. You could smell our brakes by the end of the descent! (Definitely not a drive I would make in the winter, especially since they sell snow chains at the border. If chains are needed I won't be driving there!)

We were headed to the Alpenzoo, which is the highest zoo in Europe. It is situated up on a peak above the city of Innsbruck, so there are really great views. Most of the animals are animals you would find in the Alps, so it was interesting too. It's not a huge zoo, but was quite nice. Just as we were finishing up it started to sprinkle, so it was good timing.

We drove back through Garmisch, and the views along the way are so beautiful. It's nice to just drive around and explore the area, because there are so many beautiful mountain views. We drove on to Oberammergau, which is just a short distance from Garmisch. With the rain coming down we decided to go to the reptile exhibit that is there. Jacob thinks this place is great, even though it is quite small. By the time we finished up there, the rain had stopped and we looked around a little. Finally went back to the hotel and had a swim in the hotel pool, plus a visit to the outdoor hot tub. Even Jacob can appreciate the hot tub with it's beautiful surroundings!

On Friday we decided that we would take a cable car up one of the mountains, and then hike back down. There was one that looked like the trail was pretty mild, and the info desk said it was about a 2 hour hike. The weather was perfect so we set out, and quickly were at the top of the Kreuzeck. The view was great, mountains everywhere and super blue skies. The trails are very well marked so we started our descent. Parts of the trail were gently sloping, others were very, very steep. It was slow going for Jacob, he made it though! It took us 3-4 hours to get down, and we were all pretty tired at the end of the hike. We made some fun discoveries on the way down though, here are a few pictures:

You can see the small black dot between the peaks, this is the cable car we took up the mountain

a little newt/salamander that we discovered underneath some old boards, he had a red belly

a cute tiny toad, one of many we would see in the grass beside the trail

the very first snake I have ever seen in Germany!

Our legs were killing us by the time we were finished, we went back to the room and relaxed, then went out for a great dinner at a steak house we discovered, called Steakhaus zur Waffenschmiede (located on Von Müller Strasse 15). It's situated in an old blacksmith building, dated from 1684. The food was great and the atmosphere was pretty neat too. Not the cheapest meal, but there aren't too many of those in Germany anyway! I had steak, Kenny had ribs and Jacob had turkey.

On Saturday we slowed down a bit and went for a boatride on the Eibsee, a lake at the foot of the Zugspitze. Again the weather was perfect so we really had a beautiful boat ride. When we were finished there we went into downtown Garmisch and enjoyed the street market, some shopping and lunch. We had chinese for lunch, it was very tasty. We went back to the hotel for a swim and then it was time for bed again.

We took our time packing up and heading out on Sunday morning, with a stop at the PX to check out the selection there. It was a really nice break for all of us, we had such a nice, relaxing time.

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