The first rays of sunshine sweeten my winter morning while I still gaze sleepily at the glittering snow crystals. My gaze wanders over the surrounding mountains - I count 70 three-thousand-metre peaks - what a sight ... Oh yes, how rude of me, for those who don't know me yet, I am the Kitzbüheler Horn and have my place high above the Gamsstadt. Now, shortly after sunrise, I hear a quiet rattle, the gondolas are hooked up and float leisurely uphill. A little later I hear the first winter sports enthusiasts making their turns on the still untouched slopes. I remember when Franz Reisch was the first to ski down the slopes up here more than 100 years ago, and I realise that enjoyment and joie de vivre are as much a part of the attitude to life up here today as they were then. In the evening, my iridescent white dress slowly turns a beautiful sunset red and I am already looking forward to tomorrow, when I can be the first to greet the sun.
The first downhill run at the Kitzbüheler Horn
In the spring of 1893, it was Franz Reisch from Kitzbühel who was the first to ski down the Kitzbüheler Horn. He greeted his friend Josef Herold, who had been waiting anxiously for him at the edge of a field, with the joyful words
"Come here, I have to give you a slap, it was so nice".
Franz Reisch is considered the founder of skiing in Kitzbühel. In the years to come, winter sports became more and more popular, and Kitzbühel, which until then had only been visited by summer visitors, was transformed into a winter sports destination.
Historical facts about the Kitzbühel Horn
However, the Kitzbüheler Horn ski area still had to wait a few decades for development as a ski area with gondola lifts. In December 1955 the time had come, with the opening of the Horn cable cars, the Kitzbüheler Horn was opened up to winter fans alongside the ski area on the Hahnenkamm.
The next major milestone for the Kitzbüheler Horn was the construction of the Panorama Road in 1965. Since then, guests can either reach the summit of the Kitzbüheler Horn by gondola in summer or take a leisurely drive themselves up to the Kitzbüheler Horn via the Panorama Road, which is open during the summer months.
In 1969, the 1996 m high Kitzbüheler Horn was given a red and white "horn". On 12 December 1969, after two years of construction, the ORF radio and television broadcasting system was put into operation. The 102-metre-high red-white-red broadcasting tower can be seen from far away and has also been the trademark of the Kitzbüheler Horn ever since.
Skiing, winter hiking & soaking up the sun
The fun park and the Trattalmmulde for the youngest skiers, the fantastic wide slopes of the Brunnellenabfahrt, the deep slopes along the Raintalpiste and many more make skiers' hearts beat faster. The sun terraces invite you to linger, but the Kitzbüheler Horn is not only visited by many passionate winter sports enthusiasts as a skiing area. The high-altitude cross-country ski trail and the winter hiking trail impress guests and locals alike anew every winter.
After the snowy winter months, we are now looking forward to summer again, when high up on the Kitzbüheler Horn you will be the first to see the sun rise in summer too.
#LocalHeroes from Kitzbühel
It is the people who make Kitzbühel and its holiday villages Reith, Aurach and Jochberg this special. These are exactly the personalities we are talking about in our "LocalHeroes" series, in which the true heroes of our region are put in the spotlight. They would never call themselves heroes, but they are: Because it is only due to their passion for what they do that we can all experience the unique Kitzbühel attitude to life.