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Hi, my name is Gerdi and I originate from Holland, I own a Perdiguiero Portuguêse dog named ”Paco”. I moved to Austria to fulfil my two passions, mountain hiking and motorcycling. Now, living at the foot of the beautiful Hohe Tauern mountain range, I can fulfil my passion each and every day. Living here in Austria also gives me the opportunity to share my passion with others turning my passion into my dream job. I know, I am one very lucky girl!
What went before
For a long time I worked at a project management firm, the last couple of years as a senior project manager/consultant. A busy and stressful job, which I – at some point in time – no longer enjoyed. After each (month long) holiday in the mountains it became clearer that I would much rather spent my days as a mountain hiking guide as I did in my »holiday job«.
When the division I worked in was to be reorganized, I took the first step. I became a freelance facility manager and at the same time started to explore possibilities to create an existence in Austria. In the meantime, I spent every summer holiday as a mountain hiking guide in Austria, getting to know the country better. While I was doing this, I kept thinking how great it would be to go motorcycling there too.
»There« was and is the region of Oberpinzgau in the Salzburg province. Somehow, ever since my first visit I felt completely at home here. The beautiful countryside, the more relaxed pace, the friendly people, the broad Salzach valley bordered by the Kitzbühler Alps to the north and the mighty mountains of the Hohe Tauern to the south … all this makes the Oberpinzgau to one of the most beautiful areas I know.
At last, in 2010 I was ready. My experiences as a freelancer had taught me I could handle the stress of an uncertain income. They also had readied me for a move abroad.
I packed up my belongings and put them – together with my motorcycle – in a moving van, put the dog in the car, said goodbye to family & friends and moved to Austria. Never to look back.
»Hiking Austria« (In Oostenrijk Wandelen)
Since my first holiday in Austria, I have hiked extensively in the Oberpinzgau region and the Hohe Tauern National Park. On my hikes, I gained experience of the mountains in a unique way. There is much more time to enjoy both the great and the small pleasures of the mountains. The normal worries, stress and other troubles of life give way to space, freedom, ideas and pleasure. For me it always was and still is, an ideal combination of de-stressing and enjoying life as it should be.
In order to hike and guide safely in the mountains I have completed several courses with the VAVÖ and am I a member of the association of hiking guides in Salzburgland Region. Through this Association I attend several refresher courses each year to maintain my certification and keep up my knowledge of the latest developments. In addition, each hiking season you will frequently find me hiking the mountains exploring both old and new routes.
Over the years here in Austria I have gained valuable hiking experience and knowledge. I add to my knowledge and experience through undertaking new and beautiful hikes with unexpected surprises. In this way I continue to develop myself as a hiking guide and increase my knowledge of the Oberpinzgau region and the Hohe Tauern National Park.
Hiking the Alps: is there anything better? …. Well, okay, it has to share 1st place in my alpine activities top 3 with motorcycling.
What takes 3rd place? That is something I would love to share with you in person sometime.