Archive for the ‘hiking’ Tag

Das Brauneck from Lenggries

20160402_170037Das Brauneck is a mountain of 1540m accessed from Lenggries (left), a classic wealthy rural town in southern Bavaria. It does not have a pointy peak but in the winter it hosts a ski slope. And in the spring it persists as a ski slope, facilitated by snow-making machines dotted along the piste. 20160402_131200

Ask at the cable car ticket office and they will tell you that there is no open path to the summit. Walk the 30 minutes to the Reisealm (910m), a delightful eatery and hotel through the forest, and they will advise the same. My advice, ignore them, but be prepared. There is the false sense of security when one leaves the 20160402_132952Reisealm. It all seems benign (right). But the snowline is around the corner. Unlike our walk on Monday, the gradient is starker. At various points one essentially has to climb the piste (left) and that takes considerable energy, poise and a bit of nerve (at least for a novice like me). It is also clear that there is no way back! And the signage is largely non-existent. There are yellow signs at the top and base, but the route is made up as one goes. Fortunately at this time of year, the piste is quiet. Seemingly the snow is just a little too wet. This is the time of year for higher altitude skiing.

Talking of which, it makes a difference. A number of years ago I hiked in the Moroccan Atlas 20160402_153216Mountains. We peaked at 4000m. I suppose on that basis I thought 1500m would not cause a problem. I was wrong. The photo on the right is a relieved hydrated man at the peak with a sandwich inside him.

20160402_154002Getting back is a cinch, though not cheap. We took the cable car, itself pretty spectacular (left).

Equipment wise, I am wearing North Face Northotic Pro boots. My partner wears Salewa Blackbird Evo GTX (both bought as last year’s model – North Face from Millets in England, 20160403_122241Salewa from TK Maxx in Gemany).

A couple of sticks are essential kit. Crampons maybe next year.

Hiking in the Alps

20160328_114826Regular readers know that I frequently travel to Munich and elsewhere in Germany. But despite being only an hour on the train from the Alps, a hike has been elusive. That has now been rectified (left).

It is March and there is still snow at quite low levels. Our starting point w20160328_152143as Tegernsee,
south of Munich. An easterly path – nicely stepped – takes hikers up into the forest and to the snow. First stop conveniently timed on the ubiquitous route signs (right) is Neureuthaus; essentially a busy cafe 1200m up.

20160328_132746Wander further (left) towards Gildenalm along a ridge that allows the view north towards Holzkirchen and Munich. On a clear day, that is. Gildenalm (1355m) was open, unexpectedly. Tea and cake and the experie20160328_142741nce of a torch-lit gravity toilet (right) renders the ascent (left) to Kreuzbergalm (still closed) feasible. Whilst this is by no means mountain climbing, the ascent does feel 20160328_135222like it. One really has to strain one’s head back to see the top. The obligatory crucifix reassures hikers that the top has been reached. Safely.

From Kreuzbergalm the path descends and enters the Alpbach valley. At first a stream, by the time Tegernsee is again reached, somewhat more swollen.

It is only about 12km in all, but it is not to be rushed for novices. Having just bought some new boots, feet were returned dry. Signs are regular enough to navigate without detailed map. Out again on Saturday. Hopefully.