Length: 123 km
Altitude metres: 4.500 m
Ascent: top station
Recommended bike: XC, all mountain
Biking technique: ●●●○○
Biking fun: ●●●●○
Best time for travel: May - October
The Stoneman Taurista is very impressive – in many ways. On the one hand, there is the key data - 123 km, 4,500 altitude metres and the associated agonies (also in a positive sense). On the other hand, there are the experiences along the trail - 360° panoramas, trails, a whiskey distillery on the mountain and a very special waterfall. Plenty of reasons for making the absolute highlight of the Stoneman Taurista a Signature Trail.
Our highlight starts with a proverbial high - the Rossbrand summit. The Grasberg, which at first seems unspectacular, offers a gigantic 360° panorama - from Dachstein to Bischofsmütze to Grossglockner. Here we just have to stay a while and enjoy the view. We're in luck.
The sun smiles above us and the surrounding mountains are encompassed by slightly hazy clouds. This gives the panorama even more depth and makes it even more impressive than usual. After we've had our fill, we stamp our Stoneman starter card and continue our tour. The trail leads along narrow paths through an upland moor - the meadows around us are covered in cotton grass gently swaying in the wind. The trail leads downhill in gentle ups and downs, across roots and stones - sometimes flowy, sometimes requiring technique.
Under the rainbow
Our next impressive station is the Johannes Waterfall near Obertauern. The waterfall, protected as a natural monument since 1931, got its name from Archduke Johann. He was the brother of Emperor Franz I, who had a railing built during a visit in order to open this natural spectacle safely to the general public. We reach the Johannes Waterfall via a narrow path lined with hairpin bends, which once again demands all our attention. We leave our bikes at the Stoneman signpost after we stamped our cards. Stamping, by the way, creates a really wonderful feel-good feeling - the physical proof of what you have accomplished.
A reward in form of a sound: The Johannes Waterfall plunges 60 m into the depths and, in interaction with the sunlight, creates many rainbows in the air. The water mist provides pleasant refreshment and so we climb invigorated the stairs across the well-developed waterfall circular trail.
Finish in Flachau
Our last highlight of the Stoneman Day is the trail from the Sattelbauer inn downhill to Flachau. As the name suggests, the mountain experience inn is situated on a mountain saddle high above Flachau. And for this last descent to Flachau, the planners have put all their energy into it once again. It leads downhill on narrow paths and, at the very end, even a new passage for the Stoneman Taurista was created in the forest. Our tyres absorb the fresh forest soil and we ride further and further downhill. And that’s it, our day on the Stoneman Taurista. A tremendous, eventful day. By the way, both hotels of "Mountain Bike Holidays" are accommodation partners of Stoneman Taurista. You can also get the trophy at your accommodation. And yet, we have by far not seen all that can be experienced in Flachau. Who knows what we will do here tomorrow - between challenge, experience and pleasure.