After waiting for a stream of bicyclists, who were racing across East Tyrol and Austria, to pass, the bus from Innsbruck and train from Villach carrying the Austrian and Slovenian participants finally arrived at the train station in Lienz and met for the first time. Backpacks were slung across shoulders and faces looked tired after the early morning journeys from the different starting points. After assembling everyone, we jumped aboard the bus toward Matrei and beyond…taking us deep into the heart of Hohe Tauern National Park, where our journey begins!
Surrounded by towering mountains of rock and green, the sound of the rushing river – Isel, fills the air – mixed only with the song of birds hidden in the woods.
Upon arrival, we put up the tarp tents for the first time, fumbling with knots and trying to figure out how to get all 20 people under them! We prepared our first meal under the glorious sun! After settling in, we started the warm up and getting to know us activities: starting with the people, the place and the crew! One of the activities was a solo and silent walk in which we were asked to explore the area, feel the place with all our senses and bring back a natural object in order to describe our short journey and then we created a “landart” heart (as seen on the photo).
We are looking forward to our upcoming adventures that will span the next 2 weeks, starting with the Iselfest on Saturday in Prägraten from 12:00-17:00.
Meanwhile as we closed down the day with a short reflection and then headed under the tarps as the first drops of rain began falling, we fell asleep to the song of the Isel River.