2 - 3
FATMAP difficulty grade
At the entrance to the legendary Zillertal is the small village of Fügen, from where many an adventure has been launched.
It's the access point for the mind-blowing freeride skiing in Hochfügen (see https://fatmap.com/guidebooks/4076/hochfugen's-most-epic-freeride-lines for more information) and is also the place from where you reach this fun little ride.
The route features no technical terrain and is all on jeep tracks, making it perfect for beginner riders with a good level of fitness. Start by driving up to the Gasthof Kohleralmhof, which sits right next to the mid-station of the Spieljochbahn cable car (which sadly doesn't allow bikes on board), and grab a quick cappuccino on the Gasthof's terrace.
When you finally get on your bike head north on a road which quickly becomes a jeep track and climbs up through some quiet forests. When the track levels out turn right and make a long, beautiful descending traverse around into the desolate Öxltal valley.
Eventually the traverse becomes an ascending one instead of a descending one and leads you up easily to the beautiful Kaunzalm mountain hut.
The climb up from the Kaunzalm is pretty tough so getting some refreshment and enjoying the solitude of the Öxltal from outside the hut is highly recommended before you start grinding uphill. Saddle up again and make the tough, loose climb up to the lake which supplies the local ski area's snow cannons during the winter.
The lake enjoys a fabulous view across the upper Zillertal and across towards Salzburg, so much as its man-made, it's still a lovely feature. From the lake continue climbing up to the top station of the Spieljochbahn with the view improving with every metre.
Halfway between the lake and the station you can bail out and descend back to the Gasthof Kohleralmhof but it's well worth carrying on all the way to the station and then beyond to the Onkeljoch peak, from where you can see deep into the Zillertal and over towards the Achensee lake and the glaciers of the Reichenspitze. Descend from the peak back down to the station and down further towards the lake before branching off right and beginning the long, fun descent down to the Gasthof Kohleralmhof.