|Location:||In the Tennengebirge. 1,5 h. ascend from Wengerau. Kat.Nr.: 1511/101|
|Open:||MAY to OCT once a week, after appointment.|
|Classification:||Karst cave, ice cave.|
|Light:||Carbide lamps provided by the guide. Or bring electric headlamps.|
|Dimension:||A=2,100m asl., T=6-8°C, colder in the ice filled parts.|
|Address:||Eiskogelhöhle, Herbert Burian, Geprüfter Höhlenführer, Markt 19, A-5450 Werfen, Tel/Fax: +43-6468-7554. E-mail:|
|Last update:||$Date: 2011/12/13 08:41:12 $|
|Image: Eiskogelhöhle. © Gaspard Magarinos, with kind permission.|
This cave is said to be the highest show cave of Europe, at 2,100m asl. The Eiskogelhöhle, as the word Eis (ice) in the name suggests: this is a ice cave. Some parts of this cave are filled with huge amounts of ice forming icicles, stalactites and stalagmite built of ice. However, other parts are ice free and show fine speleothems.
This cave is advertised as a show cave, but it is no real show cave, at least not one of those with electric light and paved paths. Its starts with a nearly two hours ascend to the cave entrance. Then the cave has no light, the guide provides carbide lamps for the visitors. The cave has no paths, the visitors walk just on the cave floor or on the ice.
This cave is suitable for visitors which are fit enough for normal mountaineering tours. The difficulty is rather low and similar to a walk in the mountains. Under this aspect, the three hours walk to the cave is a good way to make sure all visitors are fit enough. But the whole tour takes 10 to 12 hours, which includes three hours ascend, 5 hours in the cave, two hours descend, plus some time for changing clothes. Normal mountaineering equipment, good shoes, warm jacket, are sufficient. The members must be at least 14 years old.
The tour shows four different parts of the cave. Two of them are ice filled, one shows huge halls and passages which are 30 to 50 meters wide and high. The fourth part is smaller but full of impressive speleothems.
If you are fit enough for this trip, this is definitely one of the most impressive cave trips you can make in Austria.
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