The "12 Peaks Trophy" is considered the ultimate skiing experience in the heart of the Alps. This spectacular ski challenge runs over 46 kilometres of slopes (on an easy route), through five valleys and over twelve peaks across Salzburger Sportwelt, connecting the ski resorts of St. Johann, Wagrain-Kleinarl, Flachau, Flachauwinkl and Zauchensee. In addition to downhill runs on brilliantly groomed slopes, the highlights include enchanting summit experiences and gondola rides on state-of-the-art mountain lifts, such as the "Panorama Link", from which winter athletes can even see the Großglockner mountain. In addition to the "12 Peaks Trophy", Salzburger Sportwelt also offers a wide range of opportunities and pure downhill fun for the whole family.
Although the "12 Peaks Trophy" is not a ski circuit in the conventional sense, it can be started from any location. If you travel from St. Johann to Zauchensee — from A (Alpendorf) to Z (Zauchensee) — you complete the route in the conventional way from west to east, and return from there. If you start in the middle of the route, for example in Wagrain-Kleinarl or in Flachau, you first go in one direction, then the other to the respective end points. To get back to the starting point, you also have to return along each route. This opens up new perspectives and new departures.
Certainly the time, because you shouldn't underestimate how long the route is. If we start in a group, we take the first gondola up the mountain at 8:30 and usually return to the starting point at 16:00 on the dot. I would allow just about an hour for lunch, no more, because, naturally, you will also want to take a short break for taking photos on each of the twelve peaks. There is no time to dawdle, because the clock is ticking.
No one has to be afraid of being left somewhere on the mountain and not being able to get back to the valley — the lift personnel will of course make sure of that. If time is truly running out, the Trophy run can be interrupted in any location and you can take a taxi or ski bus back to the starting point. In that case, you won't be receiving the black trophy, but you can still get the red trophy on the second day.
The "12 Peaks Trophy" is perfectly signposted, so it will be easy to find your way. However, there is also a "Ski amadé Guide App" that can be downloaded to your mobile phone free of charge. Guides can also be booked for all locations.
The first highlight of the day is certainly the experience of being more or less alone on the mountain in the early morning. When you are the first to ski these pristine slopes, it's an exhilarating feeling. Another highlight is riding on the "G-LINK" and "Panorama Link", which includes a view of the Glockner mountain when the weather is good. Each of the twelve peaks is also a highlight in its own right, the highest point being the Gamskogel at 2,188 metres above sea level, with a magnificent panoramic view. The most spectacular downhill runs include the Gamskogel run, but also the Kälberloch run, where the women's World Cup race regularly takes place.
Absolutely, because the majority of the slopes are easy, in other words., blue, and medium-difficulty, red slopes. The four black runs can be bypassed, and there are even alternatives to the red runs if, for example, your legs are getting tired in the afternoon. What's more, there is no time pressure: the blue Trophy is awarded to everyone who has been to the twelve peaks and the valley towns — no matter how long it takes them. However, those who want to complete the "12 Peaks Trophy" in one day should already be in good physical condition.
Most winter athletes really respect the challenge and usually go to bed early to be fit the next day. During the day, many are amazed by how far the route really is, but also by how fast you can go on skis and the distances you can cover. At the end of the day, they are mainly proud of the achievement and impressed with their own prowess.
Anyone who registers in advance at www.skilinie.cc and enters their ski pass number there will be registered for the "12 Peaks Trophy". Using the Skiline portals, you can keep track of how many and which slopes and cable cars you still have to ski in order to receive the Trophy, because every summit really has to be scaled and every downhill run must be completed. The Trophy itself is a badge or sticker that can be collected at the lift ticket office.
The Trophy is an athletic challenge, but it also promises the pure fun of skiing. The huts where you will stop for breaks, such as the Burgstallhütte or the Lumberjack-Hütte, also promise pure enjoyment.
My favourites include the descents from the 2,188-metre-high Gamskogel in Zauchensee and here especially the east run with its varied slopes, but of course also the Kälberloch run, where the women's downhill race regularly takes place.