Apart from writing a book and editing some video from my 2019 hike, I've also spent some time during the pandemic to digitally scout for possible improvements to the Trans-European Alpine Route. There are some interesting major changes which aren't quite ready for public sharing yet, as well as others which I can readily encourage others to explore. This one looks like a no-brainer:
Stubai High Route Alternate
In the bottom right of the map, just out of frame, the TEAR leaves the Via Alpina Red Trail and then heads north into the Wipp Valley until joining Austria's Central Alpine Trail 02A. This sections of walking is relatively flat, boring, and involves road walking (nearby to a busy highway). The suggested alternative instead crosses west into the Stubai Alps at a pass, and then follows continuous high trails towards the range's highest peaks before swinging north to rejoin the main route. The paths along the latter half are part of the Stubai High Route - a well regarded high elevation mountain tour. Although the new route adds 20 km and +3400m of overall climbing, I think it's the superior choice. It's certainly a better match to the spirit and goals of the TEAR.
The route now appears with other alternate routes on the interactive map for The Alps section of the TEAR. If you'd like to download the kml file for this alternate specifically, you can do so here.
TEAR Class of 2022
It's that time of year when aspiring thru-hikers are heading out to the big trails, posting those monument selfies, and settling in for the next 4 to 6 months of life in the mountains. I rarely follow thru-hikers virtually from home, but this year will be different - some of those hikers are attempting the TEAR. Here are the social media accounts or blogs of those who have already started or are about to:
Matúš Lašan (Instagram) (hiking with his wife but I believe he handles most of the social sharing - I think they left Cape Emine April 15th)
Ben Russel (Blog) (beginning April 25th)
There are a couple others I corresponded with over the winter but I don't know if their plans have changed so I'll have to wait a bit more to see if they begin their hikes.
Best of luck to the TEAR Class of 2022, as well as anyone getting out for a shorter section! I hope it's as grand an adventure as it was for me.