Cycling & following historical traces

As soon as you see the about 15 stone houses and the chapel located amid the barren but nevertheless fascinating natural landscape, you'll suddenly feel like if you would be thousand kilometers away. Not for nothing the Jagdhaus mountain pasture in the Defereggen Valley in East Tyrol is also known as "Little Tibet".

The isolated mountain pasture in the upper Defereggen Valley, rather in the Arven Valley, is situated at more than 2,000 meters above sea level. Due to its origins in the early 13th century it is recognized as oldest pasture in Austria. Today the whole area is under a preservation order, but in summer South Tyrolean farmers still use it as pastureland.

No matter if you set out on foot or on two wheels - the tour to the Jagdhaus mountain pasture is always rewarding. For mountain bikers it is at any rate a recommendable excursion. On the one hand, because it isn't too exhausting and runs on good roads; on the other hand, because you can go on depending on how one feels till you reach the mountain pass Klammljoch.

Most of the cyclists choose the car park Erlsbach (1,555 m) next to St. Jakob in the Defereggen Valley as starting point. If you want to save some more meters of difference in altitude, you can also continue driving on the asphalted toll road to the Patscher Refuge and the guest house Oberhaus (1,750 m).

From there you cycle on a broad, slightly sloping, but easily passable gravel road through an ancient stone pine forest, which is one of the largest ones throughout the Eastern Alps. After 30 minutes you'll reach the Seebach mountain pastures (1,890 m). After other 45 minutes and a short, steep section you'll arrive at the Jagdhaus mountain pasture.

There it is up to you what do you do: On the one hand of course you can stop off, have a rest and take some refreshment. On the other hand we recommend you to make the short ascent to the so called "peacock butterfly" above the Jagdhaus mountain pasture. This is a marvelous hidden lake with a perfectly circular basin surrounded by highland reed.

If you however still have enough reserves of strength, you can immediately jump on your bicycle in order to reach the mountain pass Klammljoch (2,288 m) and the border with South Tyrol. For the return journey you can take the same path.

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