I have vivid memories of driving on the cliff side of narrow mountain roads, without the visual benefit of guardrails, trying to maneuver skinny hairpin turns, hoping to squeeze between trucks or buses (that took way more than their half of the road) and the edge of the cliff. I never thought that was a good idea.
Those memories interfered with any desire to drive the Grossglockner High Alpine Highway in Hohe Tauren National Park. But, after three and a half years of living in Austria, last weekend we finally drove it— twice—and although it was raining and we spent much of the time driving in the clouds, never even seeing the peaks of most of the mountains, it was a fabulous experience. Completed in 1935, the road was modern, paved, wide enough and not scary. I now feel a trip to Austria is incomplete without driving the Grossglocknerstrasse—even in the clouds and rain and being unable to see the mountaintops!