Grossglockner, peak, 12,460 ft (3,797 m) high, in Tyrol, S Austria, the highest point in the Hohe Tauern range and in Austria. It is traversed by the Grossglocknerstrasse (built 1930-35), a magnificent Alpine highway rising up to 7,770 ft (2,368 m). On the mountain is the great Pasterze glacier, which grew to its greatest extent in the mid-1800s. It is now 7.6 sq mi (19.8 sq km) in area and 5 mi (8 km) long.

The Grossglockner (Veliki Klek, Großglockner; also Glockner) is, at 3,798 m above sea level, Austria's highest mountain and the highest mountain in the Alps east of the Brenner Pass. This makes it, after Mont Blanc, the second most prominent mountain in the Alps, when measured by relative height; see the list of Alpine peaks by prominence.

The Grossglockner lies on the border between Carinthia and the East Tyrol; it is the highest peak in the Glockner group, a group of mountains along the main ridge of the Hohe Tauern. The summit itself lies on the Glockner ridge, which branches to the south off the main ridge. The Pasterze, Austria's biggest glacier, lies at the Grossglockner's foot.

The characteristically pyramid-shaped peak actually consists of two pinnacles, the Großglockner and the Kleinglockner (3,700 m; klein means "small" in German), separated by a saddle-like formation known as the Glocknerscharte.


The first assault on the Grossglockner in 1799 failed. In the summer of 1800 a second expedition was organized by Franz Xavier Salm-Raifferscheid, Prince-Bishop of Gurk: 62 people, including 47 guides and porters, took part. An Alpine hut named Salmhütte, at 2750 m, was specially built to furnish shelter for this undertaking.

On 28 July 1800, the summit was successfully ascended by the brothers Martin and Sepp Klotz, Martin Reicher, an unknown carpenter and Matthias Hautzendorfer. They reached the peak by way of the Hohenwartscharte and Glocknerscharte. Orrasch, or Horasch, in 200 years of alpine history known as first ascender, has never climbed the highest Grossglocknersummit. There is also a direct climbing route from the Pasterze glacier to the Glocknerscharte: the Pallavicini Trough. On 18 August 1876 Hans Tribusser hacked out 2500 steps in the 55° steep ice. G. Bäuerle, J. Kramser, two other guides from Heiligenblut, and Alfred Markgraf Pallavicini followed his track.


The scenic Grossglockner High Alpine Road (Großglockner-Hochalpenstraße) between Heiligenblut and Bruck was built between 1930 and 1935 according to plans of the engineer Franz Wallack and reaches a height of 2572 m (8438 ft). It is one of the main tourist attractions in Austria and has over 1.2 million visitors every year; however, it is closed in the winter.


External links

Computer-generated virtual panoramas

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