Schneeberg (Alps)

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Schneeberg Ochsenboden.jpg
At the left the Klosterwappen (summit), at the right the Fischerhaus (mountain lodge), in the foreground the Ochsenboden.
Elevation 2,076 m (6,811 ft)
Prominence 1,348 m (4,423 ft)
Translation snow mountain (German)
Pronunciation German: [ˈʃneːbɛɐk]
Schneeberg is located in Austria
Location Lower Austria, Austria
Range Northern Limestone Alps
Coordinates 47°46′3″N 15°48′28″E / 47.76750°N 15.80778°E / 47.76750; 15.80778Coordinates: 47°46′3″N 15°48′28″E / 47.76750°N 15.80778°E / 47.76750; 15.80778
First ascent Charles de l'Écluse

The Schneeberg, with its 2,076-metre (6,811 ft) high summit Klosterwappen, is the highest mountain of Lower Austria, and the easternmost 2000 m-high mountain in the Alps. It is a distinctive limestone massif with steep slopes on three sides.

The Schneeberg is one of the Northern Calcareous Alps in the borderland between Lower Austria and Styria, in the eastern part of Austria. It and the Rax (2,007 m or 6,585 ft), some 13 km (8.1 mi) to the south-west, are collectively considered the Viennese Hausberge (Vienna's "local mountains"). The rich Karst plateaux have provided drinking water for Vienna, via a 120 km (75 mi) long pipeline, since 1873, claiming to be the best drinking water in the world.

On clear days, Schneeberg can be readily seen from parts of Vienna, some 65 km (40 mi) away (as the crow flies) and even from Bratislava in Slovakia, together with its snow-fields that reach down its northern slopes even in summer and provide a challenge to skiers.

A rack-and-pinion railway, the Schneeberg Railway, now over 100 years old, climbs to a height of 1,800 m (5,900 ft), reducing the walk to the summit to an hour or two. There are also a number of other routes for walkers, including from the spa resort of Puchberg am Schneeberg to the east, or from the south, in Höllental.

The summit plateau has a number of mountain huts which are visited by thousands of walkers, climbers and even mountain-bikers annually.

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