You Salz-y Burg, You

Austria had everything I’d been hoping to find in foreign parts. The locals were friendly. The streets were decidedly different from what I was used to. History peered around every corner. There were mountains (ok, not IN Vienna, but I had a solid glimpse of the Alps on my way in) and trams, imperial buildings and European charm. Many of the locals did speak English, but often only after hearing my clearly non-local accent and guide-book butchering of their language. I’m still very sorry, Austria, and I appreciate your patience.

While in Vienna, however, folks raved about Salzburg. It was the holiday season and, while Vienna boasts some spectacular Christmas markets, Salzburg was reputed as THE place to be for markets, sights, and the true old-world festive experience. I was sold.

Hiking packs, you say? Opinions, I have

I’m a pack fiend. I love’em! Backpacks, rucksacks, messenger bags, daypacks … Given the option, I’d happily fill a room with nothing but gear, of which 60% would be bag related.

I’ve spent years swooning over some, while painfully regretting others (*cough, Peak Design, *cough). I think I’ve built up a nice internal list of criteria to determine if something is worth time and money. I’ll spare y’all the actual list, as it leans hard on subjectivity.