The highest elevation in the province of Salzburg

3.674m above sea level

… is located on the border to East Tyrol and is named after the main peak of the Venedigergruppe. This group forms together with other massivs the tremendous large group of the Hohe Tauern. In the Venedigergruppe are the most glaciers in the Hohe Tauern, which enable many wonderful tours.

In the north of the Grossvenediger the village Neukirchen is located. Here the Obersulzbachtal and Untersulzbachtal meet with their eponymous streams which flow into the Salzach. Our journey to the peak of the “worldold majesty” starts. Together we follow the way through Obersulzbachtal, pass Berndlalm, Kampriesenalm and Postalm to Kuersinger hut, our basecamp. Now we can choose several routes to climb the peak:

Normal Route – way of the first ascents

Out of the hut we walk to Venedigerkees. We put on our crampons and follow the masses of ice passing the crevasses until we reach the Venedigerscharte. A snow covered crest has to be trespassed the last metres to the summit cross.

North Crest

It’s a classical, combined rock- and icetour in III+ level of difficulty. Because of the summit height and the generous route guidance this tour is one of the most beautiful crest ascents in the eastern alps. Several versions for the entrance are possible, to walk the whole Nordgrat you divert from the normal route right after the first steps on the glacier in direction southwest. Many times just the upper part of the crest is climbed. You leave the normal route below Venedigerscharte and cross to Meynowschartl.

West Crest

The total crest from Obersulzbachtörl to the peak is very long and not climbed very often. Mostly the classical ascent through the high rugged glacier of northwestcliff to Westgratschartl is chosen. This one is shorter and in technical level of climbing.  From now on it’s II level of difficulty. On this route of a heavily frequented summit like Grossvenediger you walk almost on your own. This makes it an extraordinary experience.

 

The first ascent

The mountain enthusiastic son of the Austrian Imperial House of Habsburg Archduke Johann of Austria failed in 1828 just in front of the summit of this ambitious project. Paul Rohregger, chosen as chief forester and hunter, an accomplished local to explore the route and head of the expedition because of his work, is detected when creating the track by an avalanche and seriously injured.

The first ascent of the Grossvenediger succeeds on 3 september 1841. This is a large-scale expedition of a 40-member team, initiated by the attendant of Mittersill Ignaz von Kuersinger. As reliable, local guides Josef Schwab and Franz Scharler had been appointed to the expedition leaders and standard-bearers.