Dave's Photo & Travelblogue

Photo shoots. World travel advice. Tips on Munich & environs.

Climbing Zugspitze: Germany’s highest mountain (Part 3)

In case you didn’t see Part 1 and Part 2, that’s because they were published quite a while ago. I’ve been busy with snowboarding, and decided that this final post & video about a summer hike would anyway fit better once spring arrived.

After crossing the Höllentalferner glacier, we continued climbing up the wall for a long time.

Dave and Bunky climbing Zugspitze

As we neared the top this beautiful view greeted us:

Nearing the top of Zugspitze

Here’s the Eibsee, which we could also see briefly from the train on the way down.

View of Eibsee from the climb up Zugspitze

Now, for the final video. High-def views over the Höllental and everything beyond!

YouTube Preview Image

Watch “Climbing Zugspitze: Part 3” in HD on YouTube. A big thanks to Danny Galixy for letting me use some of his fantastic instrumental music for these three videos!

We made one slight error, in that we planned to hike back down. But the ascent went slower than expected with our acrophobic friend, so we took the train down instead. That would have been no problem, except that we’d left some sleeping bags and shoes at the hut, planning to pick them up on the way down.

So… after arriving back to the car in Hammersbach, Scott and I did a lightning-fast hike up the bottom section of the mountain. This time we chose to go via the Höllentalklamm, a gorge with a river, instead of the longer (but fee-free) Stangensteig. When I say lightning-fast, I mean the signpost said 2 1/2 hours, and we did it in 1:15. Our Smartwool shirts were soaked with sweat!

In the end I’m glad we did this bottom section twice, because the Höllentalklamm was gorgeous! You walk up narrow staircases cut into the rock, with splashing waterfalls and scenic views everywhere. I’d recommend if you are hiking up and down, to go up Höllentalklamm and down Stangensteig to take in both scenic routes.


For the full details about the hike, where to stay, where to rent gear, and all that – check out Part 1 of this series. The end of that post has all the hard facts listed in English for your Babelfish-free understanding. Part 2 of the Zugspitze series is all about the via ferrata sections (where you’re clipped to the steel cables on the cliffside) and the glacier.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading and seeing what Zugspitze is like. Let me know if you have any questions I can answer about the hike or the mountain! I’m happy to help fellow English speakers figure this baby out, because almost all the information out there is in German (grin).

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Posted in Munich Area 12 years, 2 months ago at 6:34 pm.


9 Replies

  1. Fantastic pictures! The view looks so great! Do you say that there’s a train going there? Is the train reaching the top? I’m not a climber, so I think if I go there, I have to do the train route.
    .-= Dina VagabondQuest´s last blog ..New Zealand’s Hidden Valley: Orakei Korako, the land of colorful silica terraces and geysers =-.

  2. Hi Dina, Thanks! It is a great view… just make sure the weather is completely clear when you go there. There is a train and some gondolas that take you to the top, link is at the end of Post 1 of the series. Just be aware the train is pretty expensive, I think over 40 euro roundtrip!

    There is also a less difficult hike that one can do, which doesn’t require climbing equipment. However I don’t know the details of that one off the top of my head.

  3. Awesome footage.
    I was shocked to see the man made structure at the top of a mountain.
    Kind of a strange juxtaposition…
    .-= Dad´s last blog ..snYder CoMics #12 =-.

  4. Gorgeous. Simply gorgeous :)

  5. Thanks Wendy! :-)

    @Dad, it’s definitely weird in Europe. So many mountains have chairlifts or gondolas, often with a ski hut at the top. This one is the most commercial, though: “Germany’s highest Bratwurst”… and post office… and Biergarten… etc.

    But it’s nice sometimes, honestly, because a lot of the people I saw on the tourist side could never get up there unaided. It’s good that they have a chance to experience a view like that. When I’m 80 or 90, I hope my… grandkids?… will take me up somewhere like that, where I climbed as a “youngster.”

  6. Mike Katz Apr 29th 2010

    Hello Dave, your mountain climb with the camera was fabulous. It really gives the feeling of the true depth and angles of the highest mountain in Germany. A rewarding climb captured on video..amazing!!

  7. Hi Mike, thanks a lot for the kind words! I’m glad you liked the video. Maybe this summer I’ll be able to do another climb like that one… let’s see :-)

  8. Wow I admire those who have the courage to climb. Scary! Fabulous views,I will have to take the train or gondolier and hang the expense. Will I get the same views? Great post and photos. thanks for sharing such an exciting experience.

  9. It was a great experience! You would get similar views from the top if you take the train or gondola. Be warned that on the weekends there are TONS of tourists. Also I would only go up if the weather is great and very clear; otherwise you’re just looking at clouds and fog. Give it a try!

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