In 1867, the mountain enthusiast Johann Stuedl, a business man from Prague, visited Kals for the first time and immediately fell in love with the mountains and people. He was guided by local mountain farmers who knew the lay of the land, but he also saw the poverty those lived in trying to make living for their families with a handful of cows and sheep.
He returned the following Summer with big plans. With the help of the Kalser guides he climbed the famous South ridge (Stuedl ridge) of the Grossglockner, built the first real mountain hut of the alps (Stuedl hut), in order to ease the long approach from the valley and made the climb easier for the guides and clients alike. Most importantly though, in 1869 he founded the Kalser Mountain Guides Club, the first one of the eastern Alps. He also implemented formal mountain education and training for them, guiding became a profession and lucrative income.
Therefore Kals became the origin of organized guiding and alpinism in the Alps and we are very proud to this day of our heritage and tradition.
Famous mountain guides have emerged during the club's long history, one of whom was Johann Kerer. He was the best mountain guide in his training course and graduated in 1887. In addition, the extremely strong Kalser mountain guide made some first ascents in the Western Alps and carried out a distant expedition in India (Indian glacier trips). Johann Kerer died unmarried and without children in 1929.