Stage 1: Waidring - Hausberg / Schaflberg / Kirchberg - St. Jakob in Haus
The first stage starts in Waidring. The historic “traffic juncton” was an important nodal point for many carters and stagecoach travellers. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and even emperor Franz Josef stopped at the Gasthof Post in Waidring.
First the trail leads through a traditional mixed forest up to the Hausberg. Once the summit is reached the view wanders from Fellhorn to the Steinplatte. The red gondolas of the Bergbahnen Steinplatte will transport hikers from the valley up to the primeval coral reef which is today a great hiking plateau. Not only young visitors can playfully explore the prehistoric times at Triassic Park.
From the Hausberg in Waidring you walk through the wildly romantic Weissbach canyon to the Alpengasthof Oberweißbach where a magnificent view of the Steinplatte invites you to your first stop. Passing the Rechensau chapel walk over wide alpine pastures and mountain pine fields to the Schaflberg and Kirchberg. Again and again you will enjoy a panoramic view between the mountain pines in all directions and the tranquillity of the mountains. The road leads down to the Winterstelleralm where you meet Anni Waltl, the milkmaid of the alm. She is not only looking after the cows, but also serves a great “Brettljause” (tyrolen snack) to the hikers. From the Winterstelleralm walk down the forest to Schartental and Schwendt (both districts of St. Ulrich am Pillersee) towards St. Jakob in Haus.
A very particular place is waiting just before the stage finish – the hamlet Flecken! Beautiful old farmhouses are set around the village fountain – the evidence of living tradition. Along the way one sees the Jakobskreuz on top of the Buchensteinwand and down in the valley one walks the last meters along the Jakobsweg (pilgrim path) to the stage finish in St. Jakob in Haus.