NATURSCHAUSPIEL "Fascinating Dachstein Mountains", Photo walk

Eyes on Alpine Wilderness Dachstein

Photo walk with the nature photographer, author and expert of ancient forests Matthias Schickhofer in the World Heritage Site

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  • Blick zum Hohen Dachstein
  • Matthias Schickhofer bei der Arbeit
  • Die Blüte der Glanz-Skabiose aus der Nähe
  • ©Betty Jehle
    Trittkarren ©Betty Jehle
  • Alpenmaßliebchen
  • ©Betty Jehle
    Trittkarren ©Betty Jehle
  • Studentenröschen
  • Karstlandschaft
  • Versteinerte Kuhtrittmuscheln
  • Versteinerte Schnecke
  • Zum Niederknien schön: Zierliche Glockenblumen

Next date:

August 13 - 15/2021


Only a few areas remain largely untapped and still harbour alpine primeval landscapes. The extensive limestone plateaus of the Dachstein and Dead Mountain range are among the largest alpine wilderness landscapes in Austria. Even hiking trails are sometimes rare here.

The Dachstein’s intoxicating scenery from Krippenstein offers true wilderness experiences away from the intensively developed ski facilities. The huge karst plateau consists mainly of desert-like rock terrain (with some glaciers around the Hoher Dachstein but disappearing) and a sheer endless plateau with stone and mountain pines, small forest groups, alpine meadows and karst formations. The central part is significantly called: "Am Stein".

The WWF notes (Book of the Wild, WWF, 2016): “The Dachstein Plateau is characterized by its unusual extent and the still preserved nature and remoteness. On the plateau two large areas of about 3,000 ha can be found, which are still uncut. Not even hiking trails are there.”

In the upper altitudes are huge fields of mountain bushes and alpine lawns and rock habitats landscaping. Common breeding birds in the area are above the tree line species such as mountain pipit or birch-toed, alpine brown or snow sparrow. Due to large undisturbed habitats, birch and grouse are particularly well represented.

The lonely area has its own charms: breath-taking views, clear views of sunrise and sunset, the proximity to the sky and its cloud formations or its star splendour at night, bizarre rock formations, hidden water life in little tarns and the wondrous world of alpine flora.  Maybe marmots, snow hare, chamois, ptarmigan or golden eagle (telephoto lenses!) will show up.

We will explore the mighty Dachstein plateau on hiking trails and try to edit photographically the enormous spaciousness (do not forget the wide angle!) as well as the pictorial world of the karst and the tiny colour-intense wonders at our feet with the macrolens.

Base camp is in the Lodge at Krippenstein on 2063 m above sea level (up and down by cable car).


Matthias Schickhofer  is a nature photographer, book author, campaign and NGO consultant, journalist, nature tourism promoter. Grown up in the Waldviertel, he lives in Vienna, works in Europe. He is committed to the protection of primeval forests (mainly in Romania) and threatened wilderness refuges. Focus on wilderness and primeval forest photography

About his books: "Unser Urwald. Die letzten wilden Wälder im Herzen Europas" [transl.: "Our jungle, the last wild forests in the heart of Europe"] as well as "Schwarzbuch Alpen. Warum wir unsere Berge retten müssen", [transl.: "Schwarzbuch Alpen - Why we have to save our mountains"] both are published at Brandstätter Verlag, Vienna. 


Friday, August 21st , 2020: Arrival and meeting point at 15:00 p.m. Check-in, getting to know each other and the first hike to the two viewpoints "World Heritage Spiral" and the "Five Fingers". Photographing in the evening light and capturing the magic of the sunset, finding out how the camera works and its main settings.

Saturday, August 22nd, 2020: Sunrise photography (6:00 a.m.), after breakfast, walk towards Meisenbergalm. Lunch picnic. Return to the lodge about 17:00 p.m. In the evening exchange of experiences and tips, picture evaluation etc.

Sunday, August 23rd, 2020: Water in the karst mountains, hike to Däumelsee and Däumelkogel. Return to the valley around 16:00 p.m.

All jaunts are based on the NATURSCHAUSPIEL script "Faszinating Dachstein".

Our photo workshop takes place in all weather!

Depending on the circumstances, we will adapt the program.

Location: Obertraun

Charactericstics: Hike on mountain trails but also in trackless area. Comfortable hiking speed 

Difficulty: easy to medium, sure-footedness necessary.

Beginning and meeting point: Friday, 15:00 p.m. at the valley station of the Krippenstein cable car

End: Sunday, approx. 16:00 p.m.

Participants: Accomplishment guaranteed. 10 persons maximum.

Prices photo walk Dachstein: 150.00 € plus 2 nights with half board, luggage transport and cable car tickets. Paypal accepted.

Prices overnight stay at Krippenstein Lodge: 2 nights with half board in a double room incl. local tax: 180.60 €; in a single room: € 273.80; in the dormitory: 140.40 €)  - to the website


Equipment photography: Telephoto lens, wide angle, macro // polarization and gray gradient filter // tripod // resting pad // umbrella (in wet weather) // functional description of your camera

Equipment overnight stay and photo walk: A list of equipment you will receive upon registration.


Booking & questions