Kratzer valley

The Kratzer valley is the main valley south from Schwarzmoossattel. However, it is not the one followed by the path down to Bräuning Alm, which traverses the east slopes of Bräuning Nase to reach a small col and slopes west of Kratzer. The narrow valley itself may be entered at the top (north) end by dropping below the path just after it leaves the Schwarzmoossattel. The inner reaches are then relatively inaccessible, as they are separated from the dwarf-pine covered slopes up to Bräuning Alm by a cliff band. Similarly, cliffs on the other side isolate it from the SW slopes of Vorderer Schwarmooskogel.

Consequently, few of CUCC have explored the valley since the initial trip of 1976, and most of the caves hereabouts have been entered by the local cavers (at the north end). The locals were exploring and numbering caves around the time when CUCC looked in the valley, and there is a suspicion that some of the "Austrian" numbers refer to the same caves looked at by CUCC. However, the supposed correlation between CUCC and kataster numbers mentioned in the Austrian caving journal does not seem to be correct, from evidence gathered on a visit in 1990, so CUCC's caves appear here with their original CUCC numbers, pending more investigation.

There is a suspicion that one of the German groups may have explored some other entrances near the bottom of the valley (marked with red paint, but not in the kataster), but we have no documentation on these.

If the valley is followed down, it leads into a closed depression with a low point at 1527m, not at all obvious from the map. A steep climb up leads to a more level section, where a path materialises, to meet the marked path 201 (Stögerweg) as the north branch of a T-junction at c 1580m. Straight on (initially south for a short way) is the Stellerweg area approach route, whilst right (west) is the route from Egglgrube and the Bergrestaurant. The first part of this path into Kratzer from the south appears to be well-used only because of people missing this T-junction and going some way before realising the error.

34Höhle am Kratzer I
35Dr. Kerschner Höhle
36Schachtgruppe I - V
43Höhle beim Wackelstein
44Höhle am Kratzer II
A1CUCC 1976/A1
B1CUCC 1976/B1
B2CUCC 1976/B2
B3CUCC 1976/B3
B4CUCC 1976/B4
B5CUCC 1976/B5