Because hiking heals the soul

Anyone who thinks of Kitzbühel only in terms of skiing and the Hahnenkamm is very mistaken. Because as soon as the snow has melted, it gives way to a vast hiking paradise across grassy green Alpine pastures, striking peaks and unique "catwalks".

Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl ist auf der sechsten KAT Walk Etappe unterwegs c Daniel Gollner© Daniel Gollner Fotografie

Christina hikes along the sixth KAT Walk stage in the region of St. Johann in Tyrol.

Christina Foidl is a real mountain child. Even as a young girl, she swooped barefoot across the green pastures of the Kitzbüheler Alpen, helped her father with the cows in the barn and entertained the guests - also without shoes - on her parents' Huberalm, (Alpine farm) which is situated at 1,080 metres above sea level high above the village of Kirchdorf in Tyrol. To this day nothing has changed in her passion for nature, the mountains and their originality. A life in the city? Unthinkable. She prefers to commute several hours a day by train from A to B in order to be able to work on her next tour while she is still lost in thought. "Hiking gives me a different perspective of the world. With each step I am further away from the valley, but closer to myself. It's not about reaching the summit, but rather about the route itself, about feeling yourself again, coming to terms with yourself again. A feeling that Christina likes to pass on to the people who accompany her on her way.

Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl der KAT Walk bringt sie an den Baumoosalmen vorbei c Daniel Gollner
Christina, the hiking hero, takes a small break at the Baumoosalm.
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie
Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl wandert aufwärts in Richtung Baumooskogel c Daniel Gollner
The last few metres leading to the summit cross on the Baumooskogel in the St. Johann in Tyrol region.
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie
Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidls Gäste genießen die Klänge des Flügelhorns auf der Alm c Daniel Gollner
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie

The music of the mountains speaks all languages

As a native of the Tyrolean lowlands, she is as connected to her home as much as she is talkative, open-minded, helpful, and musical. Above all, it is her musical talent which cannot be overheard. Given the right time and place, Christina produces her flugelhorn and gives free rein to the language of music. It is for these irretrievable moments that peace and quiet suddenly return to the Huberalm and the buzz of the guests’ voices falls silent. They let the melancholic sounds of traditional folk melodies take over as they fade away in the vastness of the mountains. "Many don't expect such a performance and are simply baffled." For the passionate musician these are moments of happiness and gratitude. "Music expresses, what cannot be spoken, in a language that is understood worldwide." That's exactly why she carries her flugelhorn with her on almost every tour, well stowed in her backpack, to pause at a bench, a cliff edge or under a summit cross, retrieve her wind instrument and fill the space with music which words cannot express. Whether soft or euphoric tones, legato or staccato, Christina always turns her gaze in a very specific direction while playing music. That of the Wilder Kaiser mountain range, the "Koasa" as it is known here. "I don't perform for the guests, I perform for the mountain. There's a reason for that." The "Koasa" fascinated Christina all her life. Whether it was from the train window or directly in the ascent via ferrata (protected climbing route): "There are places in life that give you something in return. You can't explain it, you have to experience it."

Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl genießt den Sommertag auf ihrer Wanderung am KAT Walk c Daniel Gollner© Daniel Gollner Fotografie

Christina is looking forward to the hike on the last KAT Walk stage in the region of St. Johann in Tyrol.

„The Walk of Kitzbühel“

Nature seekers can experience and hike the beauty of the Kitzbüheler Alpen on many trails and among them you can even find a real catwalk - the Kitzbüheler Alpen Trail, or "KAT Walk“ for short. Six hiking days, 106 kilometres, 6,350 metres of elevation and countless encounters are waiting to be discovered. Because it's the route that counts, not the destination, as Christina knows: "The KAT Walk is like a change of scenery in nature. Here, forest paths alternate with Alpine meadows with magnificent views. There are passages where the sun is your constant companion and sections of forest suffused with light where you can follow the scent of pine and spruce needles. "Day after day, the route winds its way up to the grassy green peaks of the Kitzbüheler Alpen, which brings with it the fortunate circumstance that hikers find themselves in a sea of Alpine flowers, especially in the Summer months: "Gentian, arnica, daisies, all of them stretching their blossoms towards the sky at the end of July, beginning of August, hungry for the sun". In addition, one should also look more often towards the ground and the edge of the forest in order to spot other "natives": "Be it hard-working forest ants, local chamois or passing does, those who pay attention see more.

Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl bedient ihre Gäste auf der Huberalm in Erpfendorf c Daniel Gollner
In Summer Christina serves her guests food and beverages at the Huberalm in Erpfendorf.
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie
Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl entspannt sich auf einer ihrer vielen Wanderungen in den Kitzbüheler Alpen c Daniel Gollner
On her hiking tours Christina forgets all about her everyday concerns and enjoys the nature of the Kitzbühel Alpen.
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie
Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidls Leidenschaft ist die Musik c Daniel Gollner
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie
Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl zaubert mit ihrem Flügelhorn einen emotionalen Sonnenuntergang am Baumooskogel c Daniel Gollner
Breath-taking sunset with background music at the Baumooskogel in the St. Johann in Tyrol region.
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie
Kitzbüheler Alpen Hero Wandern Christina Foidl ist auf einem Wanderweg am Baumooskogel in St.Johann in Tirol unterwegs c Daniel Gollner
The hiking ambassador, Christina, hiking along a path from the Baumooskogel in the St. Johann in Tyrol region.
© Daniel Gollner Fotografie

Moments that give you goose bumps. Moments that will be etched in your memory forever. Moments that can only be found when one moves away from the everyday madness, gets involved with nature and feeling again, in order to finally get back to oneself, just like Christina, because walking is the most natural way to gain spiritual healing. Step by step.

Sabine Ertl

Sabine Ertl

...nurture body and soul. Born 1986 in Carinthia, studied media and communication sciences in Klagenfurt. As a freelance journalist, copywriter and blogger she likes to travel a lot. Mountain freak, horse freak, neo-cellist and gourmet. More details: more details

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Val Chalmers


Aw that was so nice to hear Christina's story and brings home how much we have missed being in the beautiful Kitzbuheler region. We also just love walking in the area. We have come to Sankt Johann in Tirol every year since 2005 until this year when we had to very sadly cancel our booking due to cv19. We have definately missed our strolls in the mountains and also our cycling. The fresh air just lifts your spirit. It is so peaceful and a lovely way of life. We come from Scotland and our temperatures over the last few weeks have really fallen and we have to scrape the car before heading for work. I have so much missed visiting your area and also chatting to all the friendly Austrians. We dont speak German but have never had any problems with communication We hope that next year will be better and travel will be available. Can only dream of my beautiful mountains. Kind regards Val

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