Today was Finns birthday and he got to spend it crossing our first Alpine pass! What a gift.
Leaving Lake Fuschl behind in the morning, we climbed for a bit and then came across the bigger and more spectacular Lake Wolfgang, another lake framed by the Alpine peaks which we followed for about 15k. We then turned inland, following the road into Bad Ischl. Here we hopped onto a cycle route that took us through shady woodland following along a fast running stream all the way to the next town of Bad Goisern.
It had been really hot all day, somewhere above 30° for sure. As we passed through Bad Goisern we crossed over a bridge where people had gathered on the grassy bank to swim. It being so hot, it didn’t take long for us to hop into the river for a swim too.
Nicely cooled down after our dip we had lunch in town and got ready to cross the first pass of our trip over the Alps. It was really hot still so we waited around as late as possible, hoping the heat would dissipate a bit. It did not.
We started climbing shortly after four and it was soon apparent this would not be easy. We had 500m vertical to do and the road was completely exposed to the sun. We both had to stop every couple of meters to cool down and so it was about 90min later by the time we reached the top.
As with any climb though, once we got to the top it was all worth it. We were really in the Alps now with huge peaks towering all around us. The vista gave us the energy to ride a bit longer along the valley floor, up and over a small hill and then down towards Bad Mittendorf.
At Bad Mittendorf we looked around for somewhere to camp. We finally spotted a small stoney beach on the other side of a stream, sheltered by trees. We carried our bags and then bikes over the water and set up for the evening, having a good wash in the stream.