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Summer 2012

ALPE Alpe di Siusi Magazine

Castelrotto Kastelruth ·· Seis Siusiam allo Schlern Sciliar · Völs · Fiè allo am Schlern Sciliar ·· Alpe Seiser diAlm Siusi

Ghosts of the castle A journey through the Middle Ages

Eight heads, one goal 30th Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament

Trendy sport Slack lining at the foot of the Sciliar mountain

Werbemitteilung / Messaggio pubblicitario

Photo: Helmuth Rier

Editorial & Contents

Mit vollem Einsatz. Massimo impegno.

Dear guests! Foto: Armin Mayr

Ziele erreichen. Der Erfolg hat viele Väter. Harte Arbeit, voller Einsatz und mentale Stärke sind nicht nur im Sport entscheidend. Raiffeisen fördert den Südtiroler Sport und ist auch der richtige Partner in allen finanziellen Bereichen. So kommen Sie sicher ans Ziel.

Raggiungere gli obiettivi. Il successo è la sintesi di numerosi fattori. Duro lavoro, massimo impegno e forza mentale non sono determinanti solo nello sport. Raiffeisen, il partner giusto in tutte le questioni finanziarie, sostiene lo sport locale per consentirvi di raggiungere sempre il vostro traguardo. Agencies: Castelrotto


Alpe di Siusi

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Phone: 0471 711 811 E-Mail:


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Castle Prösels: A journey trough the Middle Ages Page 10

Meeting place: From classical music to jazz Page 13

ction, adventure, Alpine living: whether hiking, climbing, running and biking, paragliding, swimming, enjoying a typical snack or taking a relaxing hay bath, in the holiday area Alpe di Siusi holiday ideas are endless. Whatever you do, during your whole holiday you will forget your daily routine. The articles on the following pages may be an incentive to try something different from the usual: unforgettable thrills are guaranteed.

more about the interesting history of the Unterwirt in Siusi and go on a tour through the world of fragrances and colours at the Pflegerhof farm. The article “Eight heads, one goal” talks about the biggest riding event in South Tyrol, the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament. Who or what does the name “Schwoager” describe? What about the rose garden in Bulla? And which noble guests did visit Siusi during the VIP period? You will find all the answers on the following pages.

This magazine offers exciting topics for families, bon vivants, culture-lovers and sporty people. The culture and family summer at Castle Prösels provides the main topic of this edition: enjoy a journey through a medieval world or participate at the live presentation of the horn ensemble of the Berliner Philharmoniker at Castle Prösels. Moreover, discover the new trend sport slackline, read

We wish you a happy and relaxing holiday and many unforgettable moments.

Guest house: The Unterwirt in Siusi allo Sciliar Page 17

The Garden of Eden: Girl power at the Pfleger farm Page 23

Flower miracle: Lotte Zemmer’s kingdom Page 26

Old tradition: “Schwoagen” on the Alpe di Siusi Page 32

Slack lining: Fun all the way Page 35

30th Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament Page 38

Eduard Tröbinger Scherlin - President for Alpe di Siusi Marketing and the Tourist offices of Castelrotto, Siusi allo Sciliar, Fiè allo Sciliar and Alpe di Siusi

Summer Highlights ’12 Page 40

Winter Preview ’12/13 Page 42

Around & About Sommer Summer | ALPE 3


in Wonderland A journey through the Middle Ages at Castle Prösels Enjoying a guided tour at Castle Prösels makes families realise that history can be quite exciting. Once upon a time very important personalities resided at the River Adige and you can still find impressive proof of the past all around.

Children like Nina look for traces of the past at Castle Prösels and dive into history with expectant joy and loads of fantasy. The old, venerable walls offer them the opportunity to get up close and personal with history and walk in the footsteps of the Tyrolean governor Leonhard of Fiè, as well as other brave knights and noble women. During an eventful guided tour for all the family at Castle Prösels, it is very easy to imagine how nobility and their servants once lived. Children are welcomed at the castle gates by “nobleman” Karl, “Lady” Veronika or the witch called Martha...and this is where Nina gets the answer to the first of her many curious questions. “The

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Magic symbols: Kids love to dive into the past.

castle was well secured”, explains Karl, who in an easy, endearing and convincing manner draws the children into a small part of South Tyrolean history. “Apart from what happened during the far­ mer’s revolt, because legendary Leonhard of Fiè demanded very high taxes, the magnificent Castle Prösels was largely spared of raids”, explains Karl. Castle Prösels, which is situated at the edge of a rock, could only be accessed from one side and therefore, was relatively secure. For this reason, you cannot find a moat here – and of course, no drawbridge either.



little avenue leads you across a meadow straight to the wooden castle gate. “Daddy, where is the drawbridge?” Nina wants to know and can’t wait to enter the kingdom of knights and princes. Even the moat which Nina has read about in her books is nowhere to be found.

Immediately, Nina goes searching. Karl, the nobleman, puts parts of a castle model into the hands of his inquisitive visitors and explains what these are: the gate tower, the castle keep, the chapel ... At the end of the tour, when they come to the castle’s courtyard, every single bit of information will fall into place. The first point of attraction in the castle’s courtyard is the weapon chamber: here they will find »

Text: Elisabeth Augustin Photo: Helmuth Rier

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No chance for boredom: There’s loads to do and explore at Castle Prösels.

genuine iron armour and a breast plate, as well as a variety of spears and lances from the 16th century, canons, sable, epees and swords from the 17th century, French infantry rifles and cavalry sables from the 19th century. Other equipment such as hunting cutlery and knives from the 18th century are also part of the collection on loan to the castle and these can be found in the weapon chamber at Castle Prösels. A narrow spiral staircase takes the children to the lovely “fireplace room”, which reflects the special atmosphere of romantic times. During a guided family tour, this is usually the room which makes a lady’s heart beat faster. By now, Nina feels like a real princess – or more like a knight’s wife ... or a real jester? Purple and moss green, summer white and earthen brown: a number of clothes racks display beautiful robes and dresses, together with trousers and hats, which are available for young

Magic Symbols at Castle Prösels guests to try on. Nina and her friend cannot hold back any longer. They are ecstatic and very keen to try on the dresses and role play. The girls go straight for the noble ladies’ dresses. In front of old oriel windows with colourful glass and feudal wooden chairs, their parents are ready with their camera, waiting for a very special snapshot. After the children have sufficiently inspected the clothes from the Middle Ages, as well as the impressive fireplace, they are unstoppable. They simply can’t wait to conquer the great hall. Inside the castle’s centrepiece, where even today they celebrate magnificent parties such as weddings, special anniversaries, and where high-class celebrities present classical concerts, nobleman Karl gathers the kids around him and offers them more insight into the legend of Castle Prösels. “This is the story of a Franciscan monk, who came to the castle to ask for butter, bacon and eggs. He found the cas- »

Within the framework of the “Alpe di Siusi Family Summer” programme, the holiday area Alpe di Siusi invites you on seven special dates between July and August, to an adventure-filled, guided family tour at Castle Prösels. The dates are as follows (always Tuesdays): 18th / 24th and 31st July and 7th / 14th / 21st and 28th August, from 2.00 to 4.30 p.m. Booking & information at the information offices in Castelrotto, Siusi allo Sciliar, Fiè allo Sciliar and Alpe di Siusi.

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tle gates wide open and came in” ... Karl stops. For the time being, he won’t give away any more of the story. On entering the castle chapel, there is strong evidence of the Christian faith, which was deeply engrained in the lives of some of the previous noblemen and is still evident in many today. The altar painting depicts Leonhard of Fiè, who (not at all modestly) decided to put himself in the portrait. “It may just be a coincidence that his facial features are nearly the same as those of Jesus”, grins Karl. The cunning children find a number of symbols in the chapel, such as the apostles’ crosses and the grimace on the consol. Inside the courtyard, there are many things for the children’s inquisitive eyes to discover: the heraldic eagle symbolises strength and wisdom, while the lion, the king of the animal world, takes up a regal position. The signs of the zodiac high up on the clock show the course of the seasons. The well preserved stone­mason symbols are a particular mystery. The deep cistern is very interesting and opens up a great fantasy world for the kids. The journey through the Middle Ages passes far too quickly. Part of the exciting treasure hunt is decoding the magic symbols at Castle Prösels. “If you take this task seriously enough, you will find a hidden treasure at the end”, says nobleman Karl. In the crowning finale of this exciting and entertaining tour, children and parents can compete in a variety of games from the knight’s era, for example the play mill, a historic version of bowling or “feeding the dragon”. When Nina, her friend and her parents say good-bye at the gates of Castle Prösels to nobleman Karl, Lady Veronika and Martha, the witch, and “beam themselves back” to the 21st century, they have had a great holiday adventure and gained an interesting, historic experience. «

Wind players from the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra With the arrival of the new chief conductor Sir Simon Rattle, the rebirth of this famous ensemble from one of top orchestras began. The wind players of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra were established during the time of Herbert von Karajan and performed great chamber music for decades. After a change in generations, this traditional German orchestra and the ensemble reformed in 2002, on the initiative of clarinettist Walter Seyfarth and the former solo clarinettist Karl-Heinz Steffens. They presented new ideas in the programme, as well as new members.

At the heart of the ensemble is the Philharmonic wind player’s quintet consisting members from the following instruments Jonathan Kelly or Andreas Wittmann (oboe), Alexander Bader or Walther Seyfarth (clarinet), Fergus McWilliam or Andrej Zust (horn), Marion Reinhard or Henning Trog (bassoon). A particularly attractive component is the double bass (Martin Heinze), who would not have been left out at any wind players’ serenade in the Vienna clas-

sics. Building on the tradition of the Philharmonic Wind Player Quintet, the ensemble maintains a light, transparent sound.

Vincenz Krommer, a serenade by W. A. Mozart, as well as excerpts from “The Magic Flute” by W. A. Mozart.

The ensemble appears at home or abroad and regularly plays in the framework of the chamber music series from the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.

Tickets are available from 10th June at the Tourist Information Office in Fié allo Sciliar and at the ticket counter at Castle Prösels one hour before the concert begins (ticket price: Euro 20).

At the concert on 26th June 2012 in the inner courtyard of Castle Prösels, the programme depicts the octet by Franz

In bad weather, the concert will takes place at the recreation centre in Fiè allo Sciliar.

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Cultural Chief Reinhold Janek: “More than 260 concerts in the last three decades”.

From classical music to jazz

guesthouse in Bolzano by artists linked to the Munich School, during the late 19th century up to 1914. The exhibition gallery displays one piece from every artist who exhibited their works at the “Tischlerhaus” between 1982 and 2005. In a separate exhibition, there are 21 pictures by the famous artist Lotte Copí, all presents from her to the “Kuratorium Schloss Prösels”. Her remaining total works form part of the renowned art collection by Reinhold Würth, dating from 2006.

For more than 30 years, Castle Prösels has been renowned as an important cultural meeting place for visitors from near and far. Since 1982, concerts of the highest level have taken place within the castle’s varied cultural programme. Reinhold Janek, Cultural Chief at the “Kuratorium Schloss Prösels” (Castle Prösels Curatorship), tells us about what’s on offer for the summer programme in 2012.


Interview: Elisabeth Augustin Photo: Helmuth Rier

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ALPE: Last year, the impressive facilities at Castle Prösels saw approximately 17,000 visitors. What has Castle Prösels on offer for us this year? Reinhold Janek: Castle Prösels was built during the 13th century and was extended into a Renaissance castle in the early 16th century, by the former federal captain of Tyrol, Leonhard of Fiè. Since then, the castle has seen little changes, which means that our visitors can expect a very carefully renovated facility from times gone by. Over the past 30 years, the amount of visitors has constantly increased and with it the interest for the castle itself. When the cultural chief looks back … ... he realises that there were a total of 260 concerts organised during the last three decades. The spectrum consists of genuine folk, jazz, light entertainment and classical music. As part of the cultural programme we also held more than 150 exhibitions and eight open air the-

atre productions. The interest in our programme throughout the years has greatly developed, which is reflected by the constant increase in visitor numbers and the interest of the media from inside our own country, as well as from abroad. With what type of events will Castle Prösels entice the cultural inquisitive during the summer 2012? On the programme is a “hoangart” (a cosy get-together) with genuine folk music, two concerts with “alternative“ folk music, nine classical concerts, one jazz concert, as well as a matinee played by a brass quintet. On two nights, the castle will open for light entertainment music, and there are also six theatre performances with lots of fun. Which event will be the highlight of this year’s cultural summer? There will be two highlights on offer. First of all, there is the concert of the “Wind players of the Berlin Philharmonic Orches-

tra” on 26th June, which celebrates “30 years of Castle Prösels concerts”. The second event are three concerts within the framework of the “Chamber Music Festival at Castle Prösels” on 25th, 28th and 31st July with special programmes, celebrating the 10th anniversary of the “Chamber Music Festival”. We noticed that there are also permanent exhibitions at Castle Prösels. The exhibition “finff maiolica schaln” delves everyday life at Castle Prösels between 1500 and 1600, with archaeological findings from the South-East tower of the ring wall, which were handed over to the “Kuratorium” by the Ministry of Ground Monuments’ as a permanent loan. The pill hall hosts a weapon exhibition, which mainly consists of objects from the 19th century. However, it also includes some pieces, which reach back to the times of Leonhard of Fiè and the 16th century. The “Cà de Bezzi Picture Collection” demonstrates art, which was left behind in a famous

How is Castle Prösels run? The “Kuratorium Schloss Prösels” has 65 members, whose chairman is Manfred Kompatscher. The association cannot finance itself from its own funds. Without the support of the South Tyrolean provincial government, the Salto-Sciliar district community, the villages of Fiè allo Sciliar, Castelrotto and Tires, as well as sponsors such as the South Tyrolean Sparkasse, the Raiffeisenkassen SciliarCatinaccio, Castelrotto and other sponsors, it would not be possible to keep the castle maintained as well as it is. Anyone who is interested can become a member of the “Freundeskreis Schloss Prösels” (Castle Prösels Association) and help to maintain this historically important castle through practical work or financial input. Important ways for Castle Prösels to gain revenue are guided tours, as well as the hiring out the halls for private festivities. «

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The “Unterwirt” in Siusi

1518: This is the year that is carved in stone in the coat of arms above the former entrance to the guesthouse Schwarzer Adler, the oldest guesthouse in the centre of Siusi. Today, it is a comfortable hotel. 1518: This is 73 years after the famous Oswald von Wolkenstein left his home, Castle Castelvecchio, built just below the steep cliffs of the Sciliar mountain and died in Merano.


n those days, Siusi was little more than a small group of farmhouses around a village tower. Siusi was first mentioned between 982 and 987, when it belonged to the court in Castelrotto. Beside the farming estates, there was an extensive type of business park at the Frötsch creek, with blacksmiths of all kinds, working on bells, knives, weapons and horseshoes, as well as a general forger, a number of mills and sawmills, even a tannery and fulling house for traditional costumes. However, the hamlet was too small to build its own church at that time. More than 100 years later, a house was built with the year 1518 carved in its Coat of Arms. This coat of Arms was the guild-mark of a baker: a pretzel and two bread rolls, as well as the letters PP can still be seen. In 1546, this house was first mentioned in a

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contract stating, that the “Arlas estate”, which was the bakery, including its garden, and “legal licence” was handed down from father to son. “Oberwirt” and “Unterwirt”. Documents from the archive tell us that around the same time, Siusi had the advantage of a second guesthouse. It was called “Zum Gebhard” and was also known as the “Oberwirt”. Both made enough money to survive. It seemed that the farmers and manual workers liked to drink 1 or 2 glasses of wine as the following episode will show. At the beginning of 1546, the acting judge of Castelrotto adopted a new regulation for public houses, which referred to a fine of 10 Bern Marks (approximately the value of three cows). It said that all pub owners were not allowed to serve wine later than the ninth hour in the evening. During a control visit at the Unterwirt in Siusi, »

Text: Rosa Maria Erlacher Photo: Helmuth Rier

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he came across a loud crowd, sitting at the pub tables, drinking and playing cards. The judge decided to make an example out of this situation and sentenced the pub owner not only to the fine, but even made him serve a few days in prison.

During the interwar years, the pianist Iganz Friedman resided in Siusi allo Sciliar.

The name “Adler-Wirt” was first mentioned in 1841 in a document listing the inheritance given to Katharina Mulser who was 26 years old at the time. In the following year, the young pub owner married Anton Gasser. Since then (nearly 150 years ago) the guesthouse “Zum Schwarzen Adler” has been called the “Unterwirt” and remained in the hands of the Gasser family up to 1987, when the Mutschlechner family, who also owned the guesthouse Bad Ratzes, took possession of the Unterwirt. Famous guests. At the beginning of the 20th century, more and more of the upper classes appeared in Siusi and made it their popular holiday destination. Also the guesthouse “Schwarzer Adler” benefitted from this situation. It is said that once a Russian aristocratic family rented the entire upper storey of the “Schwarzer Adler” for several weeks. When Mussolini came to power in Italy, the Unterwirt was renamed the “Albergo Aquila Nera”, which introduced numerous rich Italian guests to the traditional guesthouse. The Unterwirt was renowned for its excellent cuisine and comfortable

lounge. In addition, it was an attractive meeting place due to its famous guest list, which included the author Carl Zuckmayer, the mountain pioneer Johann Santner, the film director Luis Trenker, as well as the artists Willy Valier, Oskar Wiedenhofer and Hubert Mumelter. During the 50s, the Italian painter Filippo de Pisis spent his holidays in this guesthouse, and during the 70s, Alfredo Beltrame was a welcome guest. After World War II, tourism changed totally. It was not only the upper classes who spent their holidays in Siusi, but an increasing number of “normal earners” could afford to enjoy a holiday. The so-called “economic miracle” filled up the rooms at the Unterwirt all year round, even with a new extension, as well as modernisation where necessary. In 1966, the old barn was pulled down and another storey added to the building. Every room now came with an ensuite, and a few years later, Josef Gasser added a swimming pool, one of the first in Siusi! In 1997, after the Mutschlechner family took over, the “Schwarzer Adler” changed its appearance once again. The guesthouse was turned into an impressive hotel with a sauna and wellness area. What is still left over from the old times is the stone archway with the coat of arms, showing the year 1518. «

International Ferruccio Busoni Piano Competition. Guest concert at Siusi allo Sciliar.

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From here, Friedman started all his world tours, even the one to Australia, from where he did not return after his villa was confiscated by the fascists. On 2nd September 2012, together with the village of Castelrotto, the International Piano Festival of the Busoni competition is keen to set a mark of remem-

Around 1887, when a road was built between Siusi and Ponte Gardena, the area around the Sciliar mountain was conquered by tourism. After a three hour coach ride, guests arrived at the spa resort of Siusi, which quickly turned in the preferred holiday destination for the international high society.

This “season of the elite” is best described in an essay by journalist Robert Huldschiner (1913 1984), who worked on the international stage. Huldschiner lived in Siusi and wrote this essay for the 1,000 year jubilee chronicle ‘The Village of Castelrotto - past and present’ (page 345 ff).

A gigant on the piano The Polish Jew Ignaz Friedman, who died in Sydney in 1948 is still one of the most formative personalities of the music world in the 20th century. During the years between World War I and World War II, the Friedman family decided to reside in Siusi. They bought a beautiful villa and renovated it.

Noble guests in Siusi

berance. After a private memorial event at Villa Friedman with an expert for piano rarities, Peter Froundjian from the Piano Festival Husum, the exceptional piano player Beatrice Rana who received first price at the 2011 Montreal piano competition, will display her talent at a piano evening in the Ignaz

Friedman Music School in Siusi with works by Friedman, Chopin, Clementi and Skrjabin. This will be an evening for and with the friends of the Busoni piano competition, as well as for all those, who enjoy the art of piano playing on the one hand and cosmopolitan artistry on the other.

“[…] The beginning of the 20th century presented Siusi with a great turn of events and created an opening in Europe. Respected Bolzano citizens who built their summer villas in Siusi and S. Costantino were heavily involved in this event, as they strengthened the image of Siusi as a privileged holiday

destination for important personalities. Together with these people, a number of other guests arrived from other countries in order to buy property in the area. A typical expression was the building of the residence of the Munich beer magnet Kölbl in a Teutonic castle style. After World War I, the residence was passed to the Siusi Water Association and was then sold to Sigurd, the son of the Norwegian poet Henrik Ibsen. Sigurd Ibsen was married to the daughter of the renowned Norwegian author Björnstjerne Björnson, whose brother Björn built himself a villa just below the Ibsen House. In

close vicinity was the villa of the Polish pianist Ignaz Friedman, probably the most famous Chopin interpreter of his time...and with him the elite of the international music world descended on Siusi. [Editorial note: Within the framework of the International Busoni Piano Competition, a guest concert will take place on 2nd September in Siusi in remembrance of the exceptional pianist Ignaz Friedman.] The villa of the last ambassador of the Tsar at the Vienna Imperial Court, Count Bobrinsy, which is situated at the edge of the Laranza forest, made Siusi the meeting point of the Russian and entire European high nobility after World »

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War I. However, it was long before that the King of Saxon had discovered the village of Siusi. During the summer months he resided in Siusi with his family and entourage at Hotel Salegg. The newspaper ‘Bozner Nachrichten’ on 20th July 1905 reported, that the king ‘...due to the wonderful weather conditions enjoyed a walk on early Sunday morning with the princes and Princess Margaretha’. The king’s children returned with ‘huge bunches of Alpine roses’. Afterwards, the royal family took part in the mass at the Siusi chapel and went shopping in a number of establishments.’ In 1905, in Siusi this was possible on a Sunday!

while the princesses dined at the ‘Lediger Stiefel’ hotel in Siusi. The family enjoyed a happy holiday, where the crowned nobility was able to go hiking without bodyguards and their kids could play in the forest without policemen watching over them.

The next morning, the king and the two princes walked up the Sciliar mountain and stayed overnight in the Sciliar houses (Rifugio Bolzano),

Toscanini and Arthur Schnitzler, both actors at the Castle Theatre, as well as members of the Leipzig Gewand House Orchestra, painters

After the war, the Duke of Aosta resided in the royal-Saxon rooms in Salegg, while the elegant cosmopolitan society walked along the Siusi main road between the ‘Seiser Hof’ and ‘Enzian’ and every evening enjoyed a bridge competition at the ‘Heufler’ terrace. The ‘summer in Siusi’ turned into a truly noble tradition!

and poets all came to Siusi. The amount of different languages spoken in the little village was bewildering at times. In 1910, Hugo Bürger mentioned in his Vienna guide book ‘In the Sign of Tourism’, that the ‘Seiser Hof’ with its tennis courts, swimming pool, music room and in-house Post & Telegraph office, is one of the leading hotels in Tyrol. After World War I, Mrs Liebl, in a long white dress and with royal grace, respectfully received greetings from her illustrious guests from Rome, Berlin, London and Paris. Besides the ‘Seiser Hof’ and the ‘Salegg’, there were also the highly praised guesthouses ‘Enzian’, ‘“Dolomitenhof’, ‘Oberwirt and Unterwirt’, as well as Villa Heufler: all welcomed their guests, who returned on an annual basis. […]”

Girl power at the Pflegerhof farm The paradise of fragrances and colours


he setting sun makes the Sciliar mountain glow in the sunset, while its cooling shadow reaches towards the forests and meadows along the slope. However, the Pflegerhof farm in S. Osvaldo still enjoys the glaring sunlight. It nestles at the castle ruins of Aichach, overgrown by ivy, an

old barn with a thatched roof, as well as a traditional farmhouse with a number of small greenhouses and lots of plants, herbs and flowers ... it’s a paradise of fragrances and colours. Young women return from the flower beds with baskets full of scented buds and petals. The working day is over. »

Text: Rosa Maria Erlacher Photo: Helmuth Rier

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One of the girls is Cornelia, a qualified gardener. Baby Nicole whines a little as her 30 year old mother carries her across the field in a sling. Thankfully, Maria, Cornelia’s sister comes out of the farm shop and takes the baby from her. We sit down a step or two away from the hassle and buzzle.

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her daughters have come into the business. As everyone knows, herbs are a subject for women. Years ago, herb experts were called witches and burnt at the stake. Exactly for this reason, her two sons decided to stay away from anything to do with herbs and prefer to work with something more tangible, such as wood chips for heating.

An excellent business. Only a short distance away is Martha, the mother, who planted a little garden with herbs about 30 years ago. She enjoyed her hobby so much, that after the death of her husband, she reorganised the traditional farmhouse and turned it from a dairy farm into an organic herb and spice cultivation. In the meantime, Martha Mulser has become renowned in the area as an herb specialist and

What every woman knows. ‘As children, we were always encouraged to work on the herb fields. I guess, for this reason, I naturally turned towards becoming a gardener’, says Cornelia. After the end of her training in a Bolzano garden centre, when she had not even turned 20, she decided to work at her mother’s side in their family business. Since then, it’s girl power that

was awarded the title of ‘South Tyrolean of the Year’ only a few years ago, due to her commitment to the cause. She has written a book about herbs and soil and even today is still an authoritative voice on the Pflegerhof farm. Currently, the farm is a flagship for alternative farming in South Tyrol. In order to keep it that way, both

has made the world go round at the Pflegerhof farm. Her sister Maria is responsible for marketing, runs the farm shop and is the guide for the daily farmhouse tours. Cornelia monitors the growth of the plants – from seed to harvest and Martha still holds everything together with her expertise of more than 30 years. »

A magic setting: The castle ruins of Aichach.

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Depending on the growth period, the three women have a higher or lower number of helpers on the farm. During the summer months, there could be more than a dozen people employed, including many gardening trainees. In spring, for setting up the terrace fields, they need some strong men. Everything else is taken care of by the women, says Cornelia. ‘Everything else’ includes the labour-intensive rearing of seeds with pricking out and re-potting in the greenhouse, the collection of petals by hand, as well as cutting the herbs with a cutting machine. Good planning makes the best part of the harvest. Before the seeds are sown, Cornelia makes exact designs. ‘We sow about 80 different herbs and apply the principle of mixed cultures, which means that we combine herbs and spices in such a way, that they support each other naturally and respect crop rotation’, explains Cornelia. The two hectare cultivation area is arranged in terraces and is used intensively so that every part can be reached easily by foot. It also has a variety of soil types, from sand to loam. Only organic fertilizers are used, such as castor grist and horse manure from their own farm. The entire area is watered using a sprinkler system, day and/or night, depending on the instructions given by the irrigation cooperative. What do they use against pests? ‘We hardly have any, apart from terrible snails’, says Cornelia, ‘and these are mostly eaten up by our farmhouse roommates’. Saying this, she looks towards a colony of Indian running ducks, which are about to return from the field making a lot of noise. The farm shop. After the harvest, the herbs and flower buds are put into cooling and then very carefully dried. Today, we find dark-blue cornflowers, orange marigolds and yellow evening primroses on the purpose-built wooden grits of the air-drying system. As soon as they are dry, they are stored for a while before they are sold in our farm shop in a variety of products. With time, the product range has become quite extensive: anything from herb salt to a herbal cushion, from a herbal tea mix to any type of herbal vinegar, as well as petal syrup and other things. Everything is made on the farm with their own hands. For cosmetic products only, the Pflegerhof farm transports its herbs to an expert laboratory in

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Padova, where according to grandmother’s recipe, they prepare ointments, tinctures and bitter herbs, as well as crèmes, bath additives and shampoos. For me, the most astonishing part of it all is the amount of young plants on sale. There are more than 500 available. I find it fascinating that I can choose from 30 different types of tomato plants, or 40 sage or 40 mint varieties, which come from all over the world. ‘I just love discovering exotic plants’, says Cornelia. ‘I travel throughout Europe and visit many garden centres to find them.’ From those seeds, as well as the seeds produced from their own farming, they cultivate young seedlings in the greenhouses. Some are for sale and some are used in their own cultivations. Cornelia’s personal hobby is also involved in the mix: she has an impressive and extensive collection of cacti and succulents. It turns out that she has inherited her mum’s ‘green fingers’! «

Flower miracle: Lotte Zemmer’s kingdom

A rose garden When you hear about a rose garden in the Dolomite mountains, you instantly think about the legendary King Laurino and his enchanted rose garden in South Tyrol. Since four years, you can now also find a rose garden expert in the hamlet Bulla, taking care of more than 6,000 rosebushes in her garden – at an altitude of 1,500 metres above sea level.

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strange one, she could hardly pluck up the courage to mention it. “All I want is a garden – all to myself”, she revealed to her husband. At this stage, all her husband wanted was a guarantee that he would not be drawn into working in the garden himself. Alternatively, he said, he would help with the work inside the house.

“For me, this type of work is like medicine. The stillness, fragrances and colourful displays more than compensate me for the hard work I do”, says Lotte Zemmer and keeps plucking on another rose.

The busy restaurateur is the type of woman who can make quick decisions...and with the help of an excavator, they turned the steep slope just below the hotel, where previously sheep and goats were grazing, into a terrace landscape. Lotte checked everything in great detail on the internet and ordered 100 different types of rosebushes from the Kordes family in Germany, who are renowned rose breeders: altogether 5,000 pieces. “A new car would have cost us far more than 5,000 plants. The roses bring a lot of joy into my life and give me great satisfaction!”, says the rose gardener.

Until a few years ago, the proprietor of Hotel Uhrer­hof didn’t have a lot of time for her hobby. Over the years, she turned a small mountain farmhouse, which she had inherited, into a four star hotel – with the help of her family, of course. The work in the hotel did not leave her a lot of leisure time. That is until she turned 60! This was the day, when she handed the hotel over to her daughter. Her husband asked her what she would like as a present in order to celebrate this milestone. Given that she felt the desire of her heart was a rather

Inside the kingdom of roses, dwarf King Laurino, the unlucky hero from South Tyrol’s most famous Dolomite saga, would be pale with envy at the sight of what is now more than 6,000 rosebushes. When you stand at the fence at the top part of the garden, you are immediately surrounded by the intoxicating scent of roses and you continuously discover another rose or another colour. It is then that you can easily understand why Lotte Zemmer believes that her task is the most beautiful task in the world: to care for roses! »



otte Zemmer is the ruler of this little kingdom in Bulla, which is one of the three Ladin hamlets of the village of Castelrotto. The rose queen isn’t a fairy-tale figure, but a real person. During the summer, from 6 o’clock in the morning she can be found in her rose garden, situated on a steep slope just below Hotel Uhrerhof. For weapons, she only carries her blue apron, good footwear and garden scissors when she enters her kingdom. As a gardener, she spends many hours every day in more than 1,000 square metres of terrain. Each day, she cuts at least eight wheelbarrows of wilted flowers from her 6,000 rosebushes... She does it all on her own, without anyone to help her.

Text: Barbara Pichler Photo: Helmuth Rier

Summer | ALPE 23

Rose petal syrup Ingredients 1 kg sugar 1 ltr water 4 grams citric acid Rose petals from at least 5 fragrant rose buds (untreated) Preparation Bring the water and sugar to the boil. Leave overnight to cool. Add the rose petals together with the citric acid. Cover with a cloth and leave for a minimum of three days. Stir once in a while. Fill into glass bottles and keep in the fridge.

In the meantime, the gardener knows every rose by name and in particular is familiar with the difference of their thorns “I really should apply to take part in the German show ‘Wetten, dass...’ (You bet!)”, says the former restaurateur with a twinkle in her eye. The design of the garden was fully down to Lotte herself. Due to the fact that Bulla is situated at an altitude of 1,500 metres above sea level, the choice of roses was very important. As a result, during the summer of 2009, when almost all rosebushes were in flower, Lotte Zemmer was convinced that her dream of a rose garden would work out. Climbing roses sit beside shrub roses and elegant roses, the entire colour scheme of red tones can be admired and in-between, soft white petals shine through. The path in her garden leads you in snake fashion down the slope, lined with sculptures, colourful crystal balls and a variety of climbing frames for her roses. In-between, there are a number of seats and benches to take a rest. Visitors are always welcome as long as they respect the stillness of the area, says Lotte. ‘The visitors in my garden are usually comfortable companions, most of them enjoy the peace ... and if they wouldn’t, they would certainly be speechless when they see the magnificent roses’, says Lotte Zemmer with pride. During the autumn season, the deer also enjoys the roses. The rose buds are a delicacy for them and there isn’t a fence that would keep the deer out. The gardening expert bears her loss with dignity. She tries to see it from the deer’s point of view! However, one morning when two massive stags tried to help her pluck the rosebushes, she thought to herself: ‘Enough is enough!’ The biggest highlight in her life as rose gardener was the summer of 2011. A new rose was baptised

24 ALPE | Summer

in her garden. When she got in touch with the German rose breeders Kordes and asked whether it would be possible to have a rose baptism organised in South Tyrol. They immediately sent her a choice of ten samples. She chose a robust, simple white and pink rosebush. The new rose was baptised with the name of ‘Dolomiti’ as it glows in the true colours of the Dolomite mountains. Bulla is one of the three Ladin hamlets belonging to the village of Castelrotto. Besides German and Italian, most of the population speaks Ladin, which is the third provincial official language in South Tyrol. This Rhaeto-Roman original language is also partly spoken in the Val Gardena and in addition is used as an official language in school and government offices. Geographically, Bulla is part of the Val Gardena. At an altitude of 1,500 metres above sea level, the small hamlet has less than 200 inhabitants and is a true haven in the strongly touristic valley. It seems that the time stands still in Bulla. At first glance, you see the church, which is consecrated to Saint Leonhard. In addition, there are three guesthouses and a variety of tourist accommodation. A number of old mills can be found along the Bulla creek. These were renovated only a few years ago. On certain week days, they are open and demonstrate to visitors how corn was milled in the old days. Besides the rose garden already mentioned, there is another attraction in the hamlet: during the summer of 2011, the Geotrail was opened. This is a geological path running from the Pinei Saddle (Passo Pinei) to the hamlet of Bulla. The easily accessible circular walk describes on eight panels the development of the Dolomite mountains, which became a UNESCO World Natural Heritage site in 2009. «

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“Schwoagen” at the Alpe di Siusi

What a beautiful September day! After trying to call a number of times, I have finally succeeded. The farmer is at home, the cattle have been fed and Zenzl and Sepp have some time to tell me all about their Alpine way of life.

» Text: Rosa Maria Erlacher Photo: Helmuth Rier

26 ALPE | Summer


oday, the so-called “Schwoager” is hard to find at the Alpe di Siusi. About 30 to 40 years ago, the situation was totally different. Then, it was natural for farming families to move with their cattle and everything they needed, up to the Alpine hut, make hay and produce preserved butter and cheese from the milk they got every single day from their cows. Today, the milk is collected by

milk trucks early in the morning and then transported to a creamery. Electric fences keep the cattle together so there is no need for young boys or girls to look after the cattle, milk the cows or make cheese and butter every day. The electric milking machines of today have changed this life style. A farmer only needs to drive up to the Alpine hut twice a day, to get the cattle into the barn, to milk the cows and then put the full milk containers at » The stove is the heart of the hut.

Summer | ALPE 27

the side of the road for collection. Sometimes, he checks out the meadows to see if everything is in order, has a look at the drinking troughs and maintains the electric fence. At an altitude of 2,000 metres above sea level. At the Stompfeterschwaige hut, a lot of things are still done the old way! This is simply because Sepp, the old farmer from the Stompfeterhof farm and his wife Zenzl enjoy spending their summers at the Alpine hut. They also help their son Reinhold who works at the beautiful farmhouse, situated between Castelrotto and Siusi. He is glad if they look after his cattle for a few months.

As in the past: Zenzl on the Alpe di Siusi.

of the kitchen garden and at an altitude of 2,000 metres above sea level, grows some crisp lettuce and herbs for her kitchen. With these, she spoils Sepp and also some visitors who come by the hut every now and then. Zenzl always keeps some of the strong Alpine milk for herself in order to produce butter, which she stores in the freezer. After she has done all of that, she still finds time to ensure that the geraniums and carnations around the ‘Schwaige’ grow in abundance.

There are 50 animals, 18 of which are milking cows. The rest are for breeding and graze the steep mountain slopes where the grass is particularly good. It’s a lot of work for Sepp who is already 72 years old. It is his responsibility to keep an eye on everything and ensure that the cattle stay healthy and the fences stay intact. He brings the cattle back to the farm, milks them twice a day and prepares the milk containers for collection. Somehow, he still has some time left for his hobby: playing music on his fiddle. If he takes his instrument with him to the meadows, it always takes a little longer for him to come home, says Zenzl.

Wooden stove and coffee maker. “Nowadays, electricity makes the Alpine lifestyle much easier”, says Zenzl. Today, beside the wooden stove, Zenzl has an electric coffee maker, a washing machine, running warm water from the tap and a milking machine who works according to the vacuum system. Her daughter-in-law Manuela and her three grandchildren Lisa, Julia and Jakob feel right at home, when they visit the Alpine hut for a few days. “They are usually up here with us at the week-ends. On Sundays, we walk together to the Zallinger chapel for mass”, says Zenzl. During the week Reinhold comes to do repair work on the hut. This year, the trained joiner has set his mind on making a new wooden staircase, including the roof. For this reason, he used the tractor today to bring up some prefabricated wooden boards.

However, Zenzl has enough to do to pass the time. She looks after four large pigs, which bathe in the mud right behind the hut. She takes care

Apart from that, he has lots to do on the meadows. In spring, he drives up some cow dung for the fields and at the beginning of August he cuts »

Summer | ALPE 29

the grass to make hay. “Some of the hay stays at the hut”, says his dad. He needs it to feed the cattle if they stay inside the barn, for example if some of them are ill or when a cow comes in to calf, which is regularly the case during autumn. Also, sometimes there can be snow in September. “This can happen, even though the snow will melt quickly and the young calves are not bothered too much by it”, reports Sepp. The young cattle is tough enough and comes up to the Alpine huts quite early, at the end of May. Also, they can be driven down into the valley when they are young cows; when autumn is good, sometimes this takes place as late as the beginning of October. Green meadows and Dolomite rocks. You can see from a distance that Sepp looks after the cattle well. The cows are well nourished, clean, and their hide is brushed. It is also noticeable that the entire area around the hut is quite well kept. Everything is tidied away. The milk containers are clean and stacked for easy drying. The fences stand straight and high. It seems like a picture from times gone by. At the front, there is the Schwaiger hut, a red-brown colour like the sun. In the background, you can see the green Alpine meadows with the dark stone pines right in front of the bright, almost white Dolomite rock from the magnificent Sasso Piatto mountain! Driving the cattle back down into the valley is still some time away, but it is already noticeable that the days are getting shorter and the nights colder. Now it’s time for Sepp to make firewood for the stove and ensure that there will be enough for the winter period. It is important that the hut stays warm, particularly when it’s wet outside. The cold Alpine air makes your legs feel clammy and your clothes feel damp. This will also be the time, when hunters, forest rangers or neighbouring farmers will come to the hut to warm up for a while. Visitors are always welcome and Sepp and Zenzl enjoy a chat or a game of cards anytime. Finally, when the cold nights take their toll on the vegetation around the hut and the green meadows turn brown, it is time for the two “Schwoager” to get their hut ready for the winter and drive down into the valley where they will spend the season at their homestead. « Idyll: the “Stampfeter-Schwaige” hut

30 ALPE | Summer

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Slack lining: Perfect training for body and senses

Fun all the way Summer is the right time for outdoor activities. Over the past few years, slack lining, the act of balancing on a synthetic fibre rope, has developed into a trendy sport all over Europe.

» D

uring the 1960s, slack lining was developed in the USA for mountain sports. Today, slack liners can be found not only in a group of passionate climbers, but also in enthusiastic young people. In the end, balancing on a shaky slack line is nothing but fun! Slack lining at the Sciliar mountain. This new trend sport can also be found in the holiday area Alpe di Siusi and is mostly done by young people, climbers and other sports enthusiasts. Whether it’s in the forest, your own garden or at a lake, a slack line can be set up very easily and turns any place into an adventure playground, in a very short time. All you need are two stable points such as trees, pillars or rocks, where the slack line can be fixed. You will find young people enjoying slack lining at many places throughout the summer: in Castelrotto at the Colle mountain; at the fitness trail by Denise Karbon and Peter Fill, just above the ‘Wasserebene’ sports grounds; at the outdoor swimming pool in Telfen; at the climbing stone at the Castelvecchio ruins or the lake “Laghetto di Fiè”.

Text: Barbara Pichler Photo: Helmuth Rier

32 ALPE | Summer

As soon as the 2 ½ cm wide synthetic fibre rope is set up, the first inquisitive people will start to move. Children, as well as adults come near to watch this circus-like spectacle with amazement. Hardly anyone knows the real name for this new type of sport and therefore, the audience calls it tightrope walking. However, tightrope walking was always reserved for the acrobatic elite, at dizzy heights. Slack lining is different. It can be done by anyone who is willing to give it a go – and many do!

The term ‘slack line’ has an English origin and means nothing else other than ‘a lose rope’. In contrast to the rigid wire rope used in tigh­ trope walking, a slack line is flat and extendable. For beginners, it is fixed at a height of about 50 cm above the ground. There is no real danger involved! The first try might be quite shaky, particularly as your legs tremble and excitement kicks in. After this, most people start to get ambitious and show a type of excitement comparable with children walking on a fence, while holding onto their parent’s hand. Then you try and try again. Every minute on the ground seems like lost time and therefore, they jump back onto the rope as soon as it is free again. When your body starts to get used to the shaky rope, your excitement for this new type of sport begins to increase. You can simply walk backwards and forwards on the rope, but more advanced slack liners add turns, jumps and a variety of trick combinations to their repertoire. Slack lining is fun, a sport and perfect training for your body and senses. Concentration, strength and a sense for balance are being installed. The act of balancing on a slack line is a great link between a playful game and training. For this reason, an increasing amount of sportsmen make use of the positive effect of this new sport. It is possible to spend hours on a slack line: watching it is very exciting, but taking part is even better. Extreme. Since the first attempts in the 60s, this sport has changed quite dramatically. The trend now is towards greater height, a higher rope and more extreme movement. Climbers fix the slack line between two opposite peaks »

Summer | ALPE 33

and secured with special equipment, they carry out their balancing act at a height of several hundred metres. The highest fixed line in Europe was setat the Monte Rosa massif at a height of more than 4,500 metres. The longest slack line, the so-called long line, had a length of more than 300 metres. This requires a high degree of concentration as the rope swings very easily at a length like this. A slack line works similar to a trampoline. Turns and even extreme jumps can be carried out on a very tightly fixed slack line. Using a water line set up above water makes the balancing act even more difficult as the area below is moving. However, if the water is deep enough, this could be a great way to work out new tricks. History. Around 50 years ago, climbers in the Yosemite Valley in California did some balan-

cing on climbing ropes for a pastime. They used their climbing breaks to train their co-ordination and body balance. During the 80s, a new generation of climbers improved the material and since then, a flat synthetic fibre rope and a block and tackle to tighten the rope have become the basic equipment. Tightening with a so-called ratchet is only necessary for a short period of time. Even though European climbers brought slack lining from the USA many years ago, this sport has only created interest in Europe over the past few years. A number of manufacturers offer slack line sets for beginners, which contain everything needed for the set up. As most of the time, trees are used for the set up; it is advisable to think of suitable tree protection when buying the product. «

Eight heads, one goal The Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament is South Tyrol’s largest equestrian show and celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. The riders, as well as the visitors are extremely enthusiastic.

Georg Gasslitter appreciates the fact that he has been part of this show right from the start and has had the chance to put his own stamp onto South Tyrol’s largest riding event, in a small way. “The riders on their own could not have made the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding

34 ALPE | Summer

Tournament into what it is today”, says Gasslitter. The participants in the tournament must be able to simply look after themselves and their horses. The actual organisation of the event requires hundreds of volunteers and it takes a huge amount of visitors, who cheer on the horsemen and women every year with enormous enthusiasm, to help turn the tournament into an unparalleled event. From March every year, at the foot of the Sciliar mountain, there is no other subject talked about as much as this one. “Every rider confirms, that there is nothing that competes with the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament”, says Gasslitter. Anyone who was taken part once, knows what suspense comes from this tournament ... and we are not even talking about the magnificent backdrop that’s always there. »



he moment Georg Gasslitter comes out of the paddock, you can feel the concentrated power of a nature-loving man, who is at peace with himself. The mountain farmer has dedicated his life to horses. According to him, he has had the unique chance to participate 29 times in the legendary Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament, so far. Now, he is on the verge of playing his part in the 30th anniversary of this popular and renowned equestrian spectacle, which takes place from 1st to 3rd June 2012.

Interview: Elisabeth Augustin Photo: Helmuth Rier

Summer | ALPE 35

Ambitious: Horse and rider.

ALPE talked to Georg Gasslitter about the excitement and frustrations, the challenges and the future of the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament, which can be seen in the young people.

I won the race together with my new team, my brother Reinhold, Stefan Moser and Konrad Hofer.

ALPE: You were part of the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament right from the start. Are you not yet tired of it?

They are always there with me and get drawn in, including at the training sessions. My wife and our five children are also enthusiastic horse people. We ride throughout the year and are involved in a number of equestrian tournaments. The whole family is involved. Years ago, we had stables at our farmhouse. Today, we keep eight horses on our cattle farm. My children have grown up around horses and have learned how to ride from a very young age. My oldest son also participates at the Wolkenstein race, just as I did 29 years ago at the first race.

Georg Gasslitter: No, not at all. God permitting, I will be part of this for some time to come. Riding and a fighting spirit know no age. Apart from that, experience is something that comes with time. What was your best experience?

There are many I could talk about and I’m not even just thinking of the victories won. Participating in the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament during the past few years was the best part of it. At some stage, we started to keep the training time a little more relaxed. This means that we start the race now with a lot less pressure than we did years ago. What about the disappointments?

Well, this makes me think about 1992, when I fell off my horse while riding through the gates at Prösels. My horse had lost a shoe. It had rained all week long and the ground was totally saggurated. Due to my fall, the race was over for my team as it lost us a lot of time. By the way, I found that horseshoe during a training session the following year. Obviously, this could only bring luck – and we won! How often did you win the tournament?

My team and I were fortunate enough to win eight times in total: 1984, 1985, 1987, 1993, 1994, 1996 and 1997 with my brothers. In 2008,

How did you manage to hand down the excitement about the tournament to your kids?

Has your wife Evi ever participated in the race?

Evi participated for five consecutive years, twice in a purely women’s team. The four competitive female riders even made it into the “New York Times” with the title of ‘Tyrolean Razzle-Dazzle’. What characteristics are needed in a team?

The four members of a team must be able to work well with each other, trust and motivate each other, be considerate and overcome their own ego. They must have good horses and be able to ride well. It’s not always straight forward and therefore, every tournament is gripping, not only for the visitors, but also for the participants. It just needs to work. How hard do you train for the Wolkenstein race – or is this your secret of success?

In previous years, we trained

every day for months – alone and as a team. Over time, things developed automatically. When spring comes along, we start to train. However, it would sometimes be better for the horse to train less. Does this mean that the horse is better off than the rider?

Absolutely! Horses have the ability to learn quickly and remember the tournament from last year very well. Also don’t forget: horses are ambitious creatures, even more than human beings. How does a horse react to a nervous rider?

Impatience and tension transmit easily. The horse itself can hardly wait to get to the start. If something goes wrong, the rider often blames the horse, even though the animal cannot do anything wrong. Well, there are four riders and four horses in an Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament team. Trying to bring eight different minds under one roof can be difficult at times! Which of the four parts of the race is your personal favourite?

The gate race at Castle Prösels was always my thing. The last of the four tournament parts is the most demanding, as everything comes to a conclusion at this point. When is the tension most prevailing?

Of course, everyone is tense right before the race starts. The first part at the Colle in Castelrotto is the most difficult and a particular challenge. My whole family is present, but they are usually more tense than me. My wife says that participating in the race is often easier than watching it.

What do you think the race will look like in 30 years?

(He laughs.) From the viewpoint of an 80 year old ... I am just kidding. This event has a great future. There is nothing like it. For our youth, the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament is very important. Young people are eager to take part and compare themselves to others. Which horses did you use throughout the years?

First of all, I was riding a Hafling mare called “Hex”. From 1984 to 1993, I used Elfi, also a Hafling horse. After this, there was the Hafling quarter called “Sunny”... and this year, I’ll participate on my quarter horse called ‘Smart’. In the early years, only blond-maned and native Hafling horses were used. Today, horses of various races participate in the tournament. Who are the most dreaded rivals?

In years gone by, it was definitely the team from Fiè. At the moment, there are a number of excellent teams involved, like the one from the Sarentino valley and from Renon. Is there time during the tournament to enjoy the unique landscape?

The daily routine is sheer madness. Every time, it is an unforgettable experience to start early in the morning at the Castle Forte in Ponte Gardena and to ride from there on unmarked roads, across meadows and through forests to reach the four tournament stages at the Colle in Castelrotto, in Siusi, at the lake “Laghetto di Fiè” and finally at Castle Prösels in Fiè. «

Georg Gasslitter started his career at the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament in 1983, together with his three siblings Konrad, Toni and Isolde. At a later stage, his brothers Reinhold and Andreas were introduced to the competitor formation ‘Telfen/Kastelruth’. With altogether eight victories, Georg Gasslitter most likely holds the record of all the participants. The four parts of the tournament demand everything from the rider, as well as the horse: the ring riding at the Castelrotto Colle, the labyrinth at the Matzlbödele in Siusi, the obstacle gallop at the lake “Laghetto di Fiè”, as well as the gate race at Castle Prösels. Together with his wife Evi and his five children, Georg Gasslitter runs an attractive farmhouse called the ‘OberlanzinHof’ in Castelrotto: it has cattle and is a holiday farm. His two sons and three daughters are aged between 11 and 17. They are enthusiastic riders and it is most likely that we will come across their names again in future Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournaments. In 2011, his son Martin participated for the first time in the young ‘Kastelruth Königswarte’ team and according to his dad, he achieved respectable results.

Summer | ALPE 37

Summer Highlights ’12

> June 1 to 3, 2012

> June 8 to 9, 2012

> June 17 to July 1, 2012

> July 2 to August 31, 2012

> July 20 to 23, 2012

> Summer 2012

> October 1 to 31, 2012

> October 12 to 14, 2012

30 Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament

Big Open-Air Concert of the “Kastelruther Spatzen”

Natural Food in Fiè allo Sciliar

Summer for families

Alpe di Siusi Running Shoe Experience

Summer in Castle Prösels

The “Kuchlkastl” – Culinary Festival in Fiè allo Sciliar

“Kastelruther Spatzen” Music Festival in Castelrotto

Galloping into the Middle Ages: the first weekend of June, the villages surrounding the Alpe di Siusi are dedicated to the biggest horseback riding festival in South Tyrol. A total of 36 teams face the challenging competition games of the Oswald von Wolkenstein Riding Tournament. The traditional riding spectacle starts with celebrations in Fiè allo Sciliar. On Sunday, the audience draws on foot or by shuttle buses together with the riders from race to race. At the close of the tournament, there will be an awards ceremony at Castle Prösels, with a subsequent festive celebration quite in keeping with medieval traditions.

For the sixteenth time the famous folk music group from Castelrotto, the “Kastelruther Spatzen”, invites to the Open Air on home soil. But even after all these years, the fascination of the concert is unbroken: many thousands of fans will arrive in Castelrotto this weekend in June to enjoy the breathtaking landscape and to experience the ”Spatzen” live. A special experience for all huge fans …

For years now, the cooks of Fiè have been peparing especially light and appetizing dishes in anticipation of the coming summer. Because in early-summer, the gardens there are full of sweet, juicy, and hearty fruits and vegetables, and the desire for natural and unadulterated foods of course increases. The culinary month of June in Fiè allo Sciliar offers a tempting array of tasty, natural dishes skillfully prepared and cheerfully served. A secret tip not only for health-conscious gourmets.

Summer time is family time - the Alpe di Siusi will become a paradise for children: An extraordinary nature-experiencing programme takes children and adults on a discovery expedition across the unique natural environment of the Alpe di Siusi tourist area. Together with Martha, the witch, children and parents will follow the footsteps of witches and wizards. Those of you who would like to discover what life is like on a farmstead can experience nature and agriculture close-up.

The running shoe test Alpe di Siusi Running Shoe Experience is new to the running summer around the Alpe di Siusi. At this very special event, all participants will have the opportunity to test the new 2013 running shoe collection of the main brands on various running trails of different levels with a total length of more than 180 kilometres.

In summer 2011, everybody will again be able to attend elegant evening concerts and thrilling matinees at Castel Presule. The high-quality repertoire of the performing musicians and singers extends from the ethereal realms of classical music, to earthy brass band music, all the way to the finest jazz. And whoever can’t attend the events can still participate in guided tours and view the historical castle from the inside.

The “Kuchlkastl” Culinary Festival in Fiè allo Sciliar is a well-kept secret among gourmets and friends of “down home” cooking, alike. Since 1978, the innkeepers and restaurant owners in Fiè have been inviting visitors to partake in the “Gastronomical October”. At the close of the season, the best chef cooks of Fiè will do their utmost to astonish and enchant you with new variations of traditional dishes – dishes pepared wit passion and enjoyed with fine appreciation. If you are in search of original dishes (based on time-honored recipes, but with a modern accent), you ought not to miss this month-long culinary festival in Fiè allo Sciliar.

Three days of celebrating, spending pleasant evenings together, experiencing the “Kastelruther Spatzen” live: the Spatzen-Festival in Castelrotto is a must for every fan. Surrounded by the unique scenery of the Dolomites the seven “Spatzen” enchant all friends of traditional music.


> July 5 to 25, 2012

Schlern International Music Festival Gifted music students from all over the world will be meeting in Fiè allo Sciliar in order to prepare themselves for their musical careers under the supervision of renowned musical instructors and internationally famed artists. At the “Schlern International Music Festival”, the schedule includes classic music concerts presented by the students and a series of master concerts every day.

38 ALPE | Summer

> July 9 to August 13, 2012

Summer Classics in Siusi allo Sciliar For lovers of classical music, Siusi offers an extraordinary series of concerts. Artists will perform the works of great composers. The “Summer Classics” of Siusi represent a high level of musical talent and have long since become an integral component of our summer cultural program. Both locals and visitors will be enchanted.

> September 2, 2012

International Ferruccio Busoni Piano Competition Guest concerti in Siusi (Look at page 14)

Summer | ALPE 39

Winter Preview ’12/13

SMG © Alessandro Trovati

Armin Profanter Profanter Real Estate

> December 2012

> January 13, 2013

> January 20 to 27, 2013

> Winter 2012/13

Christmas in Castelrotto

Traditional country wedding of Castelrotto

Swing on Snow

Winter Spirits at Castle Prösels

For the seventh time, the inhabitants of Castelrotto will unveil the secrets of their Christmas traditions and allow others to participate in them. Beside the little Christmas market, local farmers’ wives will offer their cookies, Christmas logs, pastries, and other authentic goodies for sale. On the second weekend, the well-known “Kastelruther Spatzen” folks music group will present songs and tunes in keeping with the “Feast of Love”. > December 7 to 9, 2012 > December 14 to 16, 2012 > December 21 to 23, 2012 > December 28 to 30, 2012 > January 10 to 20, 2013

Traditional “Hoazetkuchl” Authentic South Tyrolean “Knödel” (dumplings) and calf’s liver, goulash soup and rye bread, sweet “Muas” (applesauce) and holiday pastries are just a few of the authentic Tyrolean country dishes from which to choose during the traditional “Hoazetkuchl”.

40 ALPE | Summer

The Country Wedding in Castelrotto has already become a tradition. It’s the authentic reproduction of an historical farmer’s wedding like those celebrated since time immemorial at the foot of the Alpe di Siusi. The throngs of participants wear their traditional garments with great pride – one of the reasons why the event has developed into one of South Tyrol’s most spectacular pageants.

Eight days of music on the Alpe di Siusi, the huts and in the villages at the foot of the Sciliar mountain, sweet melodies and dynamic rhythms, groups from the entire Alpine region, and above all a great atmosphere: this is Swing on Snow 2012. For the seventh year in a row the Dolomite Music Festival offers a mix of traditional folk music with jazz, soul, pop and classical music.

> January 20, 2013

> January 25, 2013

Winter golf tournament

South Tyrol Moonlight Classic Alpe di Siusi

Play golf on snow and enjoy a wonderful winter landscape: for the 4th time in a raw, the winter golf tournament is held on the Alpe di Siusi. It is played over 9 holes, from 61 to 1150 m long. On skiers, snowboard or on sledge the participants go from hole to hole. The fairways are white instead of green, the greens whites and the golf balls stand out thanks to their bright colours. Food and music along the golf course will be provided.

The moon will be astounded when it peeks over the Dolomites. Because that’s when the starting pistol will fire for a cross-country marathon of a most unusual kind. At 8 p.m., namely, several hundred cross-country skiers will shove off from Compaccio and glide on their narrow skis in the light of their forehead-mounted lamps through the luminescent night-time winter landscape. They’ll follow the route for 20 or 36 kilometers, finally returning to their starting point. But the “South Tyrol Moonlight Classic Alpe di Siusi” is a fantastic experience not only for the participants, but for the spectators, too!

Castle Prösels is a majestic, extremely well-preserved castle located in the hamlet of Presule in the vicinity of Fiè allo Sciliar. In the wintertime, too, you can visit it and participate in a guided tour through impressive armories, and up breathtaking spiral staircases. The tour ends in the “Knight’s Hall”, with musical entertainment and a selection of delicious South Tyrolean specialties.

Your real estate agency in the Sciliar region Interesting real estate offers can be found at

And a lot more … > December 9, 2012 Highspeed Race > December, 2012 King Laurin Snowpark Opening > January 1, 2013 Ski race Fan & Fun with Denise Karbon and Peter Fill

P R O FA N T E R • r e a l e s t a t e

> January, 2013 Night Contest > February, 2013 Snowboard Contest > March, 2013 Ski Contest > March 10, 2013 The “Blue Ribbon” Race of the Alpe di Siusi

39040 CASTELROTTO - via Panider, 5 Tel. +39 0471 707 248 - Mobil +39 348 383 27 88 - Fax +39 0471 707 380 | OFFICE HOURS: Monday to Friday from 8 to 12.30 a.m., and from 2 to 5 p.m.

Around & About

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Kastelruther Spatzen. The most successful musicians of the past year are awarded the “Krone der Volksmusik” (“Crown of Folks Music”). The most successful band in 2012 was again the “Kastelruther Spatzen”.

Free ski fun with Red Bull Jib Ski Kings This was the second edition of a spectacular contest event at the Spitzbühl piste. A totally new concept was created: not concentrating on high jumps and perfect structures, but natural slope obstacles and hurdles made of wood and hay. This mega jibbing show presented us with the best performance by 19 year old Lukas Schäfer, who took first place in front of Valentino Mori and Markus Fohr from Finland. The “Best Trick” price went to Christoph Schenk for a perfect “switch misty 9”.

U.S. Cross Country Ski Team meets Alpe di Siusi For many years, the Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish and Italian cross country national teams have visited Alpe di Siusi during the winter season, in order to prepare themselves for important tournaments through intensive high mountain training sessions. This year, even the very successful American cross country skiers trained on the trails of Europe’s highest Alpine pasture. As always, the pistes were perfectly prepared and the young athletes were impressed by the magnificent panoramic views open to them. “How wonderful! We will come back …”, they said.

100 years of the Siusi music band In 1912, a “music association” was founded in Siusi by a dozen musicians “...for the purpose of supporting the formal design of religious and cultural festivities and for promoting tourism through musical events”. With more than 60 musicians, the Siusi music band, which is known today as one of the best marching music bands in South Tyrol, celebrates its jubilee in 2012 with a number of top-class concerts.

Imprint. ALPE: Reg. Court Bolzano / Bolzano, n. 9/2002 R.St. Published by: Alpe di Siusi Marketing, Via del Paese, 15, 39050 Fiè allo Sciliar, Tel. +39 0471 709 600, Fax +39 0471 704 199, Responsible Editor: Hubert Unterweger. Editorial Team: Elisabeth Augustin, Rosa Maria Erlacher, Barbara Pichler-Rier, Michaela Baur, André Bechtold, Daniela Kremer. Advertising: Sabine Demetz, Christoph Trocker. Translations: Studio Cizeta. Graphicdesign: Komma Graphik. Printing: Litopat, Verona. Circulation: 50.000

42 ALPE | Summer

The new supermarket Coop in the heart of Castelrotto offers you a wide range of first quality products. In the specialities‘ corner you will find unique culinary delights from local farmers, from biological origin and from fair trade. At the selling desk there is the famous butcher Heinz of the renowned Butcher Shop Silbernagl offering you typical Speck from Castelrotto and Helga, the soul of the Bakery and Confectionery Shop Burgauner, who will contribute with the “Schüttelbrot”. Why don‘t you come around?

Food - Butcher - Bakery - Confectionery - Hardware - Gardening - Agriculture articles


butcher’s silbernagl


Famiglia Cooperativa Castelrotto Via Panider, 24 · Phone +39 0471 706 330 · Opening hours: From Monday to Saturday from 07.30 to 12.30 a.m. and from 3.00 to 7.00 p.m. (closed on saturday afternoon when out of season)

Komma Graphik - Foto: Helmuth Rier

Without auto-mobile

Affordably and conveniently to the trekking wonderland With the Seiser Alm Card Gold or the Combi Card

G Seiser Alm Card Gold Valid for 7 days (after first use)

75,00 Euro

Se iser Alm Card Gold ohne auto-mobi

> 09/06 - 14/10/2012

l - senza auto-mobi

Gültigkeitszeitraum: Periodo di validità: 7 Tage ab Erstentwertung. 7 giorni dalla prima Value period: 7 days vidimazione. after first use.

> unrestricted use of the Aerial Cableway and the Alpe di Siusi Express (Bus Route 10) > unrestricted use of the Shuttle Bus Service around the Alpe di Siusi (Shuttle Buses, Almbus and the Public Transport Buses) and the Nightliner > unrestricted use of the Bullaccia Aerial Cableway, the Aerial Lifts Spitzbühl, Panorama, Florian (Alpe di Siusi) and Marinzen (Castelrotto) > unrestricted use of the Public Transport Services “Mobilcard Alto Adige/Südtirol”

Combi Card 3 in 7

38,00 Euro

Combi Card 7

48,00 Euro

Sig. Giuseppe Ros


Senior - 75,00 Euro Carta Numero: 0037 70 29 luglio 2012 - 9:06 Uhr


Comb i Card




il - se

nza au



Signo ra

Gius Senio eppin r a Ros Carta - 38,00 Eu si ro N 2 ago umero: 0 sto 2 0 0124 012 9:07 Uhr

Combi Card 14

72,00 Euro

In the course of 7 days (after first use)

Valid for 7 days (after first use)

Valid for 14 days (after first use)

> 3 times to the Alpe di Siusi and back, with the Alpe di Siusi Aerial Cableway or the Alpe di Siusi Express (Bus Route 10) > unrestricted use of the Shuttle Bus Service around the Alpe di Siusi (Shuttle Buses, Almbus and Public Transport Buses) and the Nightliner > unrestricted use of the Public Transport Services “Mobilcard Alto Adige/Südtirol”

> unrestricted use of the Alpe di Siusi Aerial Cableway and the Alpe di Siusi Express (Bus Route 10) > unrestricted use of the Shuttle Bus Service around the Alpe di Siusi (Shuttle Buses, Almbus and Public Transport Buses) and the Nightliner > unrestricted use of the Public Transport Services “Mobilcard Alto Adige/Südtirol”

> unrestricted use of the Alpe di Siusi Aerial Cableway and the Alpe di Siusi Express (Bus Route 10) > unrestricted use of the Shuttle Bus Service around the Alpe di Siusi (Shuttle Buses, Almbus and Public Transport Buses) and the Nightliner > unrestricted use of the Public Transport Services “Mobilcard Alto Adige/Südtirol”

The Combi Card and the Seiser Alm Card Gold are untransferable! Children (0-5 years) and persons on wheelchairs ride free of charge. Juniors (6-13 years) pay only half fare.

Alpe di Siusi Aerial Cableway 39040 Siusi allo Sciliar · Via Sciliar, 39 Tel. 0471 704 270 · Fax 0471 704 269 ·


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