When Richard Strauss was a little boy, he and his friends had themselves an adventure by hiking up one of the mountains in the Alps. The experience left an indelible mark on the young composer, who would later build a home that overlooked that same mountain range. Over an eleven year period in the middle of his life, Strauss struggled to create a work that would reflect his love of nature and the landscape that he so adored. That piece was Eine Alpensinfonie, a massive orchestral work that clocks in at just under an hour and requires a whopping 125 musicians to perform! The piece is a musical portrait of a hiker who makes a treacherous trip up a high mountain and describes his experiences on his incredible journey.