Titlis Mountain Trophy - up the Titlis on foot
I see the Titlis every day from my kitchen window and have been to the Klein Titlis countless times. I always went up by train and down mostly on skis. At the Titlis Bergtrophy 2018, I took the 2200 metres of altitude under my feet for the first time.
Daytime wake-up. I fortify myself with a good breakfast. Admittedly, I am nervous. Will I make it? Will the air be too thin for me?
My colleague and I meet up. I devoutly look up once more to our destination for today, the Gross Titlis at 3239 metres.
After getting our tickets, stocking up on provisions and chatting briefly with friends, we set off. Up to Gerschnialp - an easy start, we think.
We reach the first small intermediate destination, the Gerschnialp at 1262 metres above sea level. Now it's time to tackle the Pfaffenwand. Our previously animated conversations fall silent. Everyone concentrates on themselves. Shortly before Trübsee (1800 m.a.s.l.) I have a crisis. How am I supposed to make it to the Titlis if I'm already breathing like an old steam engine?
The refreshment at Trübsee is just in time. We take our time and motivate each other.
On we go. I have respect. But it goes smoothly. The next 600 metres up to Laubersgrat are strenuous, but I never reach my limits. I enjoy the peace and quiet, although every now and then one of the more than 1000 participants passes us, or we pass another hiker.
At Laubersgrat I am looking forward to a cup of bouillon. I treat myself to the first piece of chocolate I packed and am curious to see what awaits me on the Panorama Trail - I have never walked this alpine trail before.
Let's go. The stony path demands skill. A participant is sitting on a stone, completely scared and as white as a sheet. We help her along and are glad to be able to enjoy the hike.
For the first time we realise that the Bergtrophy is a mass hike. Shortly before the descent via the ladder, or rather a short climb down to the glacier ski lift, there is a traffic jam. We wait in the cool wind and chat with other participants. No one seems to mind the wait.
My turn. I choose the path via the ladder. When a queasy feeling briefly starts to arise, I distract myself, don't look down and convince myself that yes, I can easily scramble down a ladder.
Across the glacier we walk step by step over the Titlis glacier, which is marked by the hot summer. My colleague and I have found a common rhythm, we harmonise perfectly. I'm always afraid that I might run out of steam at some point. But no such thing. I take pleasure in the hike and in how well I'm doing.
The last stopover at Klein Titlis. Another cup of bouillon, a piece of chocolate and we set off full of energy in the direction of Gross Titlis. I am looking forward to the remaining 211 metres in altitude. Here, too, I have no trouble breathing, while others are already gasping for breath.
We did it! Happy about our achieved goal, we lie in each other's arms and of course take the obligatory summit photo. Unfortunately, the view leaves something to be desired, but that doesn't matter. The good feeling prevails. Despite the overwhelming feeling of reaching the summit, I want to descend quickly - my stomach is growling and my bladder is pressing.
We walk back to Klein Titlis, take the cable car to the stand where a well-deserved lunch awaits us. Spaghetti has never been so good!
We are back in Engelberg. I am tired, happy and proud at the same time. A fulfilling feeling that I would like to experience again, despite all the effort.
The day after
Completely unexpectedly, the muscle ache is limited. But one painful memory remains nevertheless: the blister on my heel reminds me of my summit experience with every step!
Andrea Hurschler from Engelberg knows the Titlis from skiing like the back of her hand and had a holiday job on the mountain for several years. But she completed the 2200 metres of altitude difference from Engelberg up to the Gross Titlis for the first time at the age of 31.