Mountain tour: The 5 most beautiful summit tours
The great cinema of the mountains: A summit tour is always a special experience. Magnificent paths, idyllic valleys, spectacular huts and alpine pastures, the best views and finally picturesque peaks are waiting to be climbed. These are the five most beautiful summit tours in the region.
1. Seefelder Spitze (2.221 m): The most beautiful mountain above Seefeld
The Seefelder Spitze (2.221 m/ 7.286 ft) is a mountain that should definitely be on your bucket list. The 360-degree views from there are breathtaking: you can look in every direction as far as the eye can see. You can see Germany and its highest summit, the Zugspitze, Italy and even Switzerland, while at the same time you can overlook the whole plateau and on the other side the rugged and impressive peaks of the Karwendel mountain range. The ascent from the Seefelder Joch is short by cable car and the ridge is magnificent. The path is easy, only a minimum of sure-footedness is required.
Duration: approx. 30 minutes from the Seefelder Joch (ascent with the Rosshütte cable cars)
Distance: 2 km / 100 metres in altitude
Highlight: 360-degree views and 4-country view
Cabins for a break: Rosshütte mountain restaurant, Café Segafredo, Nördlinger Hütte, Hochegg Alm, Reitherjoch Alm
Description: The easiest way up is with the Rosshütte cable cars. Take the Jochbahn comfortably up to the Seefelder Joch, from where you can already enjoy wonderful views. From the summit cross of the Seefelder Joch you continue on an easy path towards the Seefelder Spitze. The ridge is only a little exposed for a short time, otherwise it is not difficult to walk. From the summit of the Seefelder Spitze, one can either descend on the same path or continue the hike. There are many possibilities: you can hike on to the Reither Spitze (difficult path, sure-footedness required), a little less difficult is the hike via the Härmelekopf to the delicious and beautiful Nördlinger Hütte. You can also descend to lake Kaltwassersee and Hochegg Alm via the Reitherjoch Alm. No matter which route you choose: each of them is worthwhile.
2. Gehrenspitze (2.367 m): Infinite panoramic views
The Gehrenspitze (2.367 m/ 7765 ft) is a real hiking highlight. The paths to the summit are fantastic and varied, the view unforgettable and two alpine pastures await you with delicious rewards. In which of them to stop for a bite to eat? Best in both. A tour that you should definitely have done once.
Duration: 5.5 to 6 hours (round tour through the Puittal and into the Gaistal)
Distance: 16.5 km / 1300 meters altitude difference
Highlight: Very beautiful ascend, great views and delicious cabins
Cabins for a break: Wangalm, Wettersteinhütte
Description: The tour starts at the “Puitbach” car park in Leutasch (only limited parking spaces available, we strongly recommend the uncomplicated arrival by bus). From the car park or the bus stop, cross the road and walk through the idyllic Puittal valley towards Scharnitzjoch. On a beautiful path you walk in numerous serpentines up to the Puitegg and on to the Scharnitzjoch. Here you already have a great view over the surrounding mountains. From the Scharnitzjoch, follow the path uphill to the small “Erinnerungshütte” (memorial hut) and again towards the Gehrenspitze. Here, the path becomes a bit more exposed, you need to be sure-footed and have a head for heights until you reach the summit of the Gehrenspitze. The views are breathtakingly beautiful over the Leutasch and far over the Alps. On the same path you go back via the Erinnerungshütte and to the Scharnitzjoch. Follow the signs in the direction of Wangalm/ Wettersteinhütte and descend first steeper to the big memorial stone. From here the path continues downhill to the Wangalm, where a very rewarding stop on the terrace is already waiting for you. Only 10 minutes further along the forest path, you can also find the Wettersteinhütte with a sunny terrace and great culinary delights. From the cabins you can either descend via the broad forest path or the smaller path through the forest (behind the Wettersteinhütte) down into the Gaistal valley to the Stupfer car park. Once you reach the bottom, you can refresh your tired feet in the cold water of the river Leutascher Ache. The regional bus comfortably takes you back to the other villages or to the starting point. If you would like to walk back to the starting point, it will take approximately 3,5 kilometres and 2,5 – 3h more.
3. Birkkarspitze (2.749 m): The queen of the Karwendel
The Birkkarspitze (2.749m/ 9019ft) is the “Queen of the Karwendel”: it is the highest peak of the mountain range. Climbing its summit and enjoying the breathtaking views is a very special feeling. The mountain tour to the Birkkarspitze is long and demanding, and also requires very good surefootedness and a head for heights. The way into the Karwendel is long and can therefore be ideally combined as a “bike and hike” tour or with an overnight stay at the Kawendelhaus.
Duration: 8 hours
Distance: 43 km / 1850 meters altitude difference
Highlight: highest peak of the Karwendel, easy climbing passages and breathtaking views
Cabins for a break: Karwendelhaus
Description: Starting point of the tour to the Birkkarspitze is the car park “Länd” at the information office Scharnitz. From here you hike or drive on a flat path along the turquoise Isar and follow the path into the Karwendel valley. Continue towards the Karwendelhaus, where you first have to overcome a steep ascent and pass the Birzelkapelle chapel and later the unmanned Larchetalm. The idyllic alpine pastureland and the rushing Karwendel stream invite you to take a break before you take the steeper path that leads to the Karwendelhausin several bends. Here you have now already covered 18km of the path. Leave the bikes here and follow the narrow trail nr. 225 behind the Karwendelhaus towards the Birkkarspitze. The steep path is partly covered by rope insurance and leads through avalanche barriers, then through a mountain pine forest and later through the Schlauchkar up the mountain. The ascent to the Schlauchkarsattel is steep and arduous, depending on the season snowfields can be found here. Via the bivouac hut, the trail continues along the path until the last ascent. This is again partially insured with ropes and you should be sure-footed for the easy climbing passages. The incomparably beautiful views from the highest peak of the mountain reward the hard work. You descend again on the same way, especially in the upper part you have to be very careful.
4. Hohe Munde (2.662m): The Grande Dame of the mountains
She is the “grande dame” of the mountains: the Hohe Munde (2,662 m/ 8733ft). The summit is perched above Leutasch and with its striking shape it is perhaps the most famous mountain in the region. The Hohe Munde has two peaks (east peak and west peak), from which you enjoy incomparably beautiful views. You can either hike over the Hohe Munde via the Rauthhütte and descend the same way or – more demanding – cross it.
Duration: 7 hours
Distance: 12.6 km / 1570 meters altitude difference
Highlight: two summits, great views into the Inntal valley and up to the Zugspitze
Cabins for a break: Rauthhütte
Description: You can either start the hike to the Hohe Munde from the car park “Buchener Höhe” between Buchen and Leutasch and from here ascend via the path through the forest to the hut, or park at the car park “Rauthhüte/ Mundestadl” and walk from here along the forest path. Behind the Rautthütte, the trail on the right is initially flatter over meadows. On the way you should definitely make a detour to the “Zugspitzblick” and admire the highest peak in Germany from there. The trail continues through mountain pine forests and later through alpine, stony terrain towards the summit. The steep path requires some effort here, but is rewarded with great views at the eastern summit (2,595 m). From here the path leads easily over the ridge to the west summit (2,662 m). Take the same way back. At the Rautthütte you can look forward to a particularly delicious stop: the hut has already received several awards from Gault Millaut.
5. Reither Spitze (2.347m): The highest of feelings
The Reither Spitze (2.374m/ 7788ft) high above Seefeld and Reith is an impressive peak. Hardly any other place offers such beautiful views into the Karwendel mountains and at the same time over Seefeld and the region, the Inn valley and over large parts of the Alps. The tour becomes perfect with a very delicious stop at the spectacularly located Nördlinger Hütte.
Duration: 3 hours
Distance: 6.9 km / 1,230 metres in altitude
Highlight: magnificent panoramic summit, stop at the Nördlinger Hütte
Cabins for a break: Nördlinger Hütte
Description: The hike to the Reither Spitze is especially beautiful as a crossing from the Seefelder Spitze (“King’s Tour”). The ascend from Reith near Seefeld is also a great tour. The starting point here is the train station of Reith bei Seefeld, from where you follow the road northwards and walk along the Römerweg until you turn onto a path (No. 211). Only a little later the path branches off to the right towards the Schartlehnerhaus (unmanned). In steep serpentines you hike up to the Schartlehnerhaus at 1.856m and further through mountain pine fields to the Nördlinger Hütte. Here too, the path is steep again at first, before the hut is reached in fewer serpentines later. Behind the Nördlinger Hütte, the path leads steeply and with wire ropes partially insured to the summit of the Reither Spitze, where ones likes to stay a little longer to enjoy the view. The descent is along the same path and you should definitely stop at the Nördlinger Hütte to enjoy the delicious food.
Attention: Hiking trail no. 84 from the Reitherjoch Alm to the Nördlinger Hütte will remain closed in the summer of 2020.
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Fotos: Mathäus Gartner, Burnz Neuner, Lisa Krenkel, Tessa Mellinger, Laura Zobernig, Heinz Zak, Maria Plangger, Charly Schwarz