Austrian eyecandy …
With the late autumn days growing short, dark and gray, it seemed like a good time to reach back into the archives for some of the brightest summer pictures I could find. The soft, caressing clouds over the foothills of Upper Austria are especially soothing to me, and the mere memory of the glowing sunset over the craggy Alps around the Krippenstein still warms my heart. And it will be a few months before we’re back to swimming in our favorite alpine lake, the Langbathsee, but until then, we have this photographic memory of a perfect summer day to tide us over. Be sure to check out the Summit Voice Sunday set archive for more travel pics, and check out our online gallery for nature and landscape images.
Along the wall.
Along the trail.
Sunflowers over the city.
I was pleasantly surprised, last weekend, to find a late-blooming field of sunflowers on a sunny hillside above Linz, Austria. Even as most forests donned their tan and burnished autumn coats, this patch of blossoms seemed to defying the season with one last-ditch blaze of summer glory. Visit the Summit Voice Sunday set archive for more travel pics, and check out our online gallery for nature and landscape photography.
In the vines …
All the colors of autumn in one leaf.
I had a chance to explore the heart of Austria’s wine country on a perfect autumn day, following an interpretive trail through neatly tended terraces in the Kamp River valley, north of Vienna. Most of the grapes were already harvested, but a few clusters were still ripening in the sun for a late harvest. Some will be left until they freeze on the vine. That late harvest yields a smaller amount of concentrated wine, its sweetness balanced by high acidity. Check out all the latest Summit Voice travel photography in our Sunday Set archive, and visit our online gallery or more landscape and nature images.
Summer scenes …
Sunset over the Ottensteiner Stausee.
Storm over the Danube.
A quickie photo trek through through parts of Austria reflecting the peak of the summer season, including building thunderstorms over Vienna and the Danube, one more of the poppy fields in full bloom, and some countryside shots. Check the Sunday Set archive for more travel pics, and visit our online gallery for fine art nature and landscape images, available printed on a wide range of mediums.
Salzburg and Tirol may get all the glory for dramatic mountain scenery, singing nuns and happy cows, but the northeastern quadrant of Austria also has its charms. The Waldviertel is one of the most rural and agricultural sections of the country, with a pleasing patchwork of carefully tended fields and forests, not to mention ponds and lakes that have been managed for aquaculture for several hundred years. The images in this set were all taken around the town of Zwettl, the heart of the Waldviertel at the confluence of the Kamp and Zwettl rivers. Check out the last few Summit Voice photo essays in the archives and visit our online gallery for more nature and landscape photography.
Ripening grain and a poppy field in full bloom near Bad Traunstein.
At an elevation of about 1,000 meters in the Waldviertel, a poppy field blooms in mid-July.
Austria a densely populated country, but there are some wide open spaces. Just have to know where to look!
Sunset at one of the world’s great steppe lakes, the Neusiedler See.
There’s a perception that Austria is a densely populated country, especially if your main impression comes from visiting tourist centers like Vienna or Salzburg. But in reality, the country ranks about in the middle of EU countries in terms of density, at 97 people per square kilometer. That’s a little higher than Greece (81) but lower than, for example, Italy (192). That means there are some wide open spaces outside the population centers, including the sparsely populated Waldviertel region, north and west of Vienna, extending toward the border with Czechia. We captured a few landscape images in the region during a visit to the famed poppy fields, highlighted in last week’s photo essay.
For a few weeks each summer, usually in early to mid-July, farm fields in Lower Austria come alive with the poppy bloom. The flowers are planted for their tiny black seeds that are a popular ingredient for a wide variety of baked products in this region of the world. Sometimes they’re simply sprinkled atop braided rolls, but they really shine when they’re ground and mixed into a sweetened paste to fill pastries. The fields in this set are all near the small town of Ottenschlag, and it’s well worth visiting if you happen to be near Vienna this time of year.