First Time in Austria

We started out in the rain this morning, headed for Austria – a surprise for me since I only thought I was visiting Germany on this part of my trip!

heading out in rain

Even in the rain the long-ish drive of about 300 km (190 miles), the scenery was stunning.


mtns 3

mtns with snow

Our first stop was to be at a scouring (washing) plant in Ötztal to deliver about 500 kilos (1100 pounds) of Mountain Sheep wool where it will be sorted and washed by color.

mtn wool in trailer

mtn sheep wool

regensburger sign

At this plant run by the family Regensburger, the wool starts the washing process by going in here.

wool goes in here

Gets weighed (to insure even amounts in each batch) and washed and rinsed several times (with the water being recycled) at temperatures ranging from 52-58 degrees C. (125-136 degrees F.)

lots of washing

Then dried and tumbled to remove any short pieces.


Clean, dry wool is pressed into bales with this piece of equipment.

bale press

The bales are 200 kilos each (about 440 pounds).

bales of washed wool

Producers such as Nathalie and her group can then instruct the washing plant where to send the wool for the next stages of production (yarn, spinning wool, finished products). It is not common for the washing and the other production to be done in the same place – or even the same country!

Besides being a washing plant, Regensburger also has for sale items made from wool and has a shop next door to the washing plant. Here, you can see some of their felt and yarns and also carpets made from Tyrolean Alpine Sheep wool from the Ötztal Valley.

shop shelves


Outside as we prepare to leave there is a nice surprise for us – some beautiful goats! These are Walliser Schwarzhalsziegen – “black neck goats” from the Walliser area of Switzerland. I thought they were very interesting and beautiful – even if they aren’t sheep!

goats 2

goat close up

Good-bye to Austria for today as we head back to Germany and make a stop to see some more sheep – and pigs!



Published in: on June 9, 2015 at 11:40 pm  Leave a Comment  

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