Austria 2010 Holiday ... 2 ... Winzendorf

Date & Time: Tues 25th May - Wed 26th May 2010.

Location : Vienna to Winzendorf.

Holiday details : A week in Austria visiting Helmut Huddler and his family.

Places visited : Weikersdorf, Winzendorf and the Marble Quarries.

Highest point : Meeting the family.

With : Helmut, his wife Susan, the children Marlene and Klara, and Ann.

Weather : Sunny but thundery showers not far away.


 Loweswatercam in Winzendorf at EveryTrail

Zoom in and move the map or photo map as required.


Day three saw us packing our bags and driving to Helmut's village about an hour south of Vienna.

We hired a car for the holiday but first I had to cross the city centre to collect it.

Chance for a second look at one of the Churches along the way

and also to go inside to enjoy the grand architecture.

The Palace Church of the Habsburgs . . .
. . . with an interior befitting Royal patronage.
A dramatically decorated High Altar.
Roof detail from the Side Chapel.

The car I had to collect was parked in the multi-story round the corner.

The paperwork completed, their leaflet said I had to descend in the lift and there I would find it, ready and waiting.

There's no way I could ascend in the lift . . . there was only blue skies above this small Vienna park.

Photo (taken by myself from the wrong side of the car) as we waited in traffic.

Yes . . . welcome to the world of left hand drive . . . the fun starts here on the Vienna inner ring road.

Arriving without major incident, welcome to Weikersdorf, the village next to Helmut's

and to the Dorfmeister, our hotel/guest house for the next few days.

Dropping off the bags, we drive over to see our host.
"Take Care - Children" . . . Different signs over here.
Schneeberg from the valley road to Winzendorf.
The Prossett Gap with Helmut's village in front of it.

After two air flights and a hour's car journey

all we have to do now is find the right house.

A quick phone call sorts the problem while we wait at the village information board.

The coloured signs advertise the local way-marked village trails available.

" Welcome to my home "

We had arrived . . . and spent an hour or so chatting (Helmut speaks very good English) about the ways of the world

what he and his family have been doing recently and what we would like to do over the next few days.

Helmut was keen to show us around all the delights of the area during the time of our stay.

In the evening Ann and I took a local drive to begin to appreciate the area we were staying in.

A short car tour took us around Bad Fischau and Markt Peisting.

We stopped for a short while to see the delightful Church at Dreistetten.

The road back towards Muthmannsdorf . . .

. . . and a local landmark, the ruined castle of Emmerberg . . .

all surprisingly familiar as a result of the pictures we had seen on Helmut's web site over the last few years.

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Our local circular drive completed, we find ourselves back at our hotel . . .

Where we fell asleep to the light of a spot lit Church tower . . .
. . . and awoke next morning to a colourful rainbow.

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One of the local walks close to Helmut is to the old Marble Quarries on the side of the hill behind the village.

This was an obvious choice for a first walk.

First we meet Sheila the retriever.

She is getting quite elderly now and can't manage the big walks.

We set off across the "back garden", a field that Helmut has started to cultivate with a small vegetable patch.

The quarry in the background is a more modern quarry but it is no longer in production.

The railway level crossing in the village.

There's a regular hourly passenger service despite the small size of the village.

The lower slopes of the hillside face south

and so are able to grow vines for local, small scale production of wine.

Our path sets off into the woods.
The Black Pine has traditionally been harvested for resin.

Helmut said that the resin was used for all sorts of applications but this type of collection is a thing of the past.

Someone has recreated a resin trap to show how it used to be done.

We are climbing up the hillside now and the view across the valley is improving all the time.

On a rock outcrop we get a view north east to Bad Fischau

and the distant large town of Wiener Neustadt, where Helmut and Susan have their Pathology Practice

Some lovely flowers . . . Schwalbenwurz
Dictamnus . . . that thrive on the Limestone outcrops.

One even with a small insect on it.

[ My thanks to Helmut for his help with the flower names ]

" Marmorsteinbruch "

is the German for Marble Quarry.

We approach from the forest side rather than the normal quarry entrance

so there's no advance warning

of what's just over the next limestone crag.

Helmut stands on the edge of the old quarry spoil heap.

A cabin in the quarry has been renovated in recent years

and was the used during a recent village social outing and barbecue.

The marble is found in a colourful Limestone outcrop.
The cutting face where the shapes were rather un-natural.

The rock was quarried using drill holes and cutting wire rather than explosives.

This means that the blocks are removed with the minimum of damage,

a technique which has only recently started to be used on our own Honister Slate Quarries here in the Lake District.

Large lumps of rock, the product of the quarrying, litter the site.

These were cut but unfinished limestone blocks that were abandoned when the quarry closed.

Looking down on the village of Winzendorf from near the quarry.

Unfortunately in the distance there seems to be a rather large rain storm moving our way.

A few minutes later, as we walked towards the high point of the hillside, the weather caught up with us.

Grossenberg Summit . . . the highest point on this smaller hill

but despite having a chair on which to relax, the view was very limited today and we were not encouraged to stay.

The big thundery rain cloud which extended over Hohe Wande didn't help either.

Very much like an English woodland at this time of year.

We make our way down towards the Muthmannsdorf side of the hill on the second half of the walk.

Here we pass close to the ruin of the old Emmerberg Castle we had seen in the sunshine last night.

High above the Prossett Gorge we reach the edge of the Stone Quarry

and look down on Winzendorf below.

Helmut's house is one of those in the lighter green field in the centre of the picture.

Looking straight down here . . . only a light wire fence protecting the edge of the steep drop.

The old quarry has been set out as a stage set for a local open air adventure games

according to the adventure books of Karl May and his related 1930's films

Looking even more directly down on a new house that is being built in the quarry area below.

" I love work . . . I could sit and watch other people doing it all day " ;o)

Back down in the valley after a steep descent

and it's time for the local train to stop and pick up three or four passengers.

It was a short walk back to the house . . . The children were still out at school

so we changed our damp clothes back at the hotel and returned looking a bit smarter for dinner.

This is Klara

proudly holding a packet of "English Tea" specially bought for us.

And this is Marlene with her Dad.

Nice photo Helmut !

A leaving gift for Ann and myself after our first evening with Helmut, Susan and the family.


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Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Canon 75 or my Canon G10 digital camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . . . a road map that is suitable for left hand driving.

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A previous view of the area - 25th June 2009 A Landschaftsphoto 's "Local Walk"