Ken Roberts - - Climbing

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via ferrata in northeast Italy with less down-walking


Less downhill walking -- why? Many people feel that downhill is easier and prefer more of it.

But Sharon and me and some of my American friends have strong legs from bicycling which they can use for climbing up on rock mostly with smooth moves, while going down steep mountain slopes requires putting sudden impacts on the leg muscles -- which our leg joints and muscles are not well trained for. So we find that our legs and feet are sore for the next couple of days after walking down from a mountain climb which was rather fun for going up on steep rock.

Hiking poles -- using poles for going down definitely helps absorb some of the impact -- I highly recommend them for bicyclists who want to do some climbing or mountain walking in Europe -- but it's not enough.

So I'm looking for VF climb routes with either (a) less down than up, so we can get a big accomplishment and burn more calories without so much impact; or (b) shorter routes. My personal guideline for "Less Down" is:

< 600m : less than 600 vertical meters (2000 vertical feet) of down-walking and down-climbing.

< 350m : "very little down"

guidebook in English

John Smith and Graham Fletcher: Via Ferratas of the Italian Dolomites (2 volumes) (Cicerone Press, revised to 2006, 2005). So far I've found both volumes accurate and very helpful.

For me, the second volume has proved even more important than the first, because it opened up a whole world of options outside the "obvious" famous Dolomites around Cortina - Corvara. And not just for climbing (also road-biking)

But these volumes do not (as of 2010) include latitude-longitude of critical route and escape points for GPS navigation. Nor latitude-longitude for car navigation to trailhead parking.

Some of the routes are described in the downhill direction, likely what many cable-grabbing via-ferratists would prefer. But climbers who love to move with their hands directly on rock and use the cable only for protection tend to prefer the uphill direction -- as do bicyclists with legs well-developed for pushing them upward. Has not been a problem for me, just reverse my reading and thinking.

The climbs below are just possible ideas for via ferrata with less downhill -- I haven't actually tried most of them. So don't rely on these ideas: Do your own research, buy the guidebooks and some maps.

volume 1 -- North, Central, and East Dolomites

  • Col Rodella (SELVA6): 350m, very little down -- even less if start from the lift up from Campitello di Fassa in the valley to the south -- more detail here.

  • Grosse Cirspitze / Tschierspitze / Gran Cir (CORV1):  shorter than 600m

  • Kleine Cirspitze / Tschierspitze V / Piz da Cir V (CORV2):  shorter than 600m, and nice rock moves going up, nice view at top, but going down the gully is steep and not fun.

map: Kompass 624: Hochtabei / Alta Badia 1:25000

  • Pisciadu / Brigata Tridentina (CORV4):  Done the obvious way, the descent would be 650-750m -- but possibly can get down-walking below 600m if start down Val Setus and then make the lower part of the descent finish on path 666 "Alta Via delle Dolomiti" going WNW to the pass (Grodnerjoch / Passo Gardena, 2121m) instead of N back to the parking lot (1955m) - (then still need some other way for somebody to connect down to the parking lot)

  • Boéseekofel / Piz da Lech (CORV5):  short (down 400m)

  • Lichtenfelser Steig (CORV6):  short, very little down if do not go to top of Piz Boe. (but what's the point of climbing this one except to go to the Piz Boe)

  • Vallon (CORV7):  short, almost "very little down" (350m) if do not go to top of Piz Boé, and descend CORV6 instead. The trail is pretty rocky, not easy to walk. Almost "little down" (650-700m) even if go to Piz Boe summit, but there are some steep sections on the descent, and trail is often rocky.

map: Kompass 624: Hochtabei / Alta Badia 1:25000

  • ? Trincee / Mesola (ARAB2): perhaps down stays less than 600m? [K]

  • Sass de Rocia (ARAB3): short, very little down.

  • Lino Pederiva / Sasso Bianco (FASSA12): guidebook says 600m descent (? but could it be less with clever use of lift?)

  • Tomaselli / Punta Sud (FALZ1 + FALZ1A): little down (500m) if hike up from the road and return by the lift. If do it out + back from top of lift, then must start with walking down around 250m, so then adding the downhill on returning from the summit of Punta Sud, the total comes to 750m.

map: Kompass 624: Hochtabei / Alta Badia 1:25000 or
 . . . Kompass 617: Cortina d'Ampezzo / Dolomiti Ampezzane 1:25000

  • Lagazuoi Tunnels (FALZ2):  Could be done with little down if did it in the uphill direction, but that puts you against the flow of people on a popular route, not recommended.

  • Averau (FALZ3):  short if do from the Cinque Torri lift. [S]

  • Nuvolau / Ra Gusela (FALZ4): ? short enough ?

map: Kompass 624: Hochtabei / Alta Badia 1:25000 or
 . . . Kompass 617: Cortina d'Ampezzo / Dolomiti Ampezzane 1:25000

  • Giovanni Barbara (CORT1):  short. (? is it possible to use mountain bike for approach ?)

map: Kompass 617: Cortina d'Ampezzo / Dolomiti Ampezzane 1:25000

  • Marino Bianchi (CORT5): very little down -- short in vertical, though plenty of climbing in traverse. [S]

  • Ivana Dibona (CORT6):  very little down if do it in the uphill direction. Or if only do the upper section near the top of the lift.

  • G Olivieri (CORT10): ? very little down if do in the uphill direction (from Rif Ra Valle to Rif Pomedes) and the chairlift is running? (does the route work in the uphill direction?) [S]

  • Lamon / Formenton (CORT12): very little down if do in in the uphill direction.

map: Kompass 617: Cortina d'Ampezzo / Dolomiti Ampezzane 1:25000

  • Sci Club 18 using the Falloria lifts.

  • Monte Piana (MISUR1): short-ish.

  • Torre Toblino (MISUR2 + MISUR3):  short in vertical, though significant horizontal from Rifugio Auronzo trailhead - (mountain bike can legally be taken only halfway, as of 2008) [S]

  • Deluca / Innerkoffler - Paternkofel / Monte Paterno (MISUR4):  around 400m down, signifcant horizontal, though most is on an easy trail, and there's less coming back (if do not do East ridge MISUR5). [S]

  • Bonacossa (MISUR6): path from Misurina lift to Rif Auronzo (can take bus down). [S]

map: Kompass 617: Cortina d'Ampezzo / Dolomiti Ampezzane 1:25000

  • Amalio da Pra / Marmarole (AURO2):  short-ish if drive up the road: but the road is supposed to be narrow and twisty.

volume 2 -- southern Dolomites, Brenta, and Lake Garda

  • Attilio Sieff / Punta Polse (BOLZ2): short-ish (NW from Predazzo)

  • ? Bolver Lugli (S.MAR1): possibly stays under 600m descent if do not go to Cima della Vezzana and instead go directly to top of Piz Rosetta lift. (There is some steep scrambling with perhaps tricky route-finding in middle of descent of Val del Cantoni, and possible need for ice axe or even crampons in snowfield of upper Val del Cantoni. [K]

  • Canalone (S.MAR12): short-ish. [K]

  • Alfredo Benini (BREN1): perhaps stays under 600m downward, if done south to north starting from Rif Vallesinella (or from Groste middle station?)  and finishing at Groste lift top station (with shuttle to Vallesinella?). [S]

  • Brenta: some of the other Brenta routes do not have much down, once you're up there in the huts. You still need to "pay your dues" by doing down on exit -- unless finish at the Groste lift. [S]

  • Gustavo Vidi (BREN10): short. Might be very little down if start from Groste lift middle station, finish at Groste lift top station (reverse direction from described in guidebook)

  • Umberto Bozzeto (BREN13): short-ish. [S]

  • Tullio Giovanelli / Burrone di Mezzocorona (TRENT1): very little down if from the top of climb walk east to Monte di Mezzocorona and take lift down (walk-bike shuttle between Mezzocorona center and bottom of climb). [S]

latitude-longitude (approximate with my GPS)
. * parking at bottom of Mezzocorona lift (funivia) = (46.21869,11.11860) = N46.21869 E11.11860
. * parking at trailhead for VF Burrone / Giovanelli = (46.22699,11.09733) = N46.22699 E11.09733
, * Bait dei Manzi (picnic area somewhere above VF) = (46.23021,11.10282) = N46.23021 E11.10282

  • Fennberg / Favogna (TRENT2): paved road mostly wide connection near top and bottom. Lots more detail here.

  • ?? Rio Secco (TRENT3): ? might be a way to hike up further from the top to a road ?

  • Giordano Bertotti (TRENT4): short-ish

  • Clemente Chiesa (TRENT5): ? perhaps very little down with bike-car shuttle. [S]

  • ??  Rino Pisetta: possible car-bike shuttle with village of Ronza ?

  • Anglone + Scaloni (RIVA3): short-ish

  • Torrente - Rio Sallagoni (RIVA4): short, very little down, and bike-car shuttle from road near Drena castle would make it zero downhill. (climb has some moves which some might find strenuous). Lots more info here.

  • Colodri (RIVA5): short, very little down. [S]

  • Via del 92 Congress (RIVA6) short-ish, but guidebook says it's not a via ferrata, but exposed. [S]

  • Fausto Susatti / Mario Foletti / Cima Capi (RIVA8): short-ish -- if do not go to the higher Cima Rocca summit. [S]

  • Spigolo della Bandiera (RIVA11): short-ish (barely makes the cut)

  • Monte Albano (ROVER4): short-ish, supposed to be very difficult.

  • Vipere + Corna Piana (ROVER5): short, could be very little down.

  • Gerardo Sega / Monte Baldo (ROVER6): car-bike shuttle might make the down pretty short. Or by driving higher and starting from above, could make it "short-ish" (just barely makes the cut). But if minimize the driving by parking below, then it's long down back to the car.

via ferrata in Germany + Austria with less down-walking



warning:  The info below is way out of date because it does not take into account the new climbs and new information in the new German-language guidebooks.


Less downhill walking -- why?  see above

I'm looking for VF climb routes with either (a) less down than up, so we can get a big accomplishment and burn more calories without so much impact; or (b) shorter routes. My personal guideline for "Less Down" is:

< 600m : "little down" = less than 600 vertical meters (2000 vertical feet) of down-walking and down-climbing.

< 350m : "very little down"

10july note:

Now I've attacked the problem in a better way: Purchased a modern German-language guidebook by -- lots more climbs, easier to find candidates.

guidebook in English

Paul Werner, Klettersteig: Scrambles in the northern limestone Alps (English translation by Dieter Pevsner) (Cicerone Press) -- first published in 1983, but I've found it still mostly accurate -- and more complete than I would have guessed for "moderate-grade" via ferratas (? though it might be missing some of the newer harder ones?). Nice maps of the routes themselves. If you can't understand the German descriptions of routes available free on the web, then this book is well worth buying.

Of course the book does not include latitude-longitude of critical route and escape points for GPS navigation. Nor latitude-longitude for car navigation to trailhead parking.

Big problem is that I had to really dig around in it -- with a detailed topo map alongside -- to get key route selection + planning info out of it in a form useful to me and Sharon. So I did a lot of digging, and thought I'd give other folks a head start on planning for themselves, and wrote some of it here . . . below.

added 10july:

Klettersteigführer Österreich, 3rd edition ( 2010) has short English descriptions of each climb, and is overall easier to use than the Werner guidebook, and has lots more climbs in a much larger range of Austria. It also includes southern Germany).


Kompass 1:50000 topo maps might not be the best, but they're easy to find and purchase at kiosks and autobahn rest areas. I've found that the maps for the southern German mountains tend to offer substantial coverage of nearby Austria.

I think maps like these are essential to have in advance for planning for non-German-speakers, because the English-language guidebook isn't that helpful for planning without a detailed topo map.

Note that many of the lifts shown on the Kompass 1:50000 topo maps are only for equipment + food supply to a hut, not for people to ride up to the hut. Check the legend of symbols carefully so you can tell which of the lifts are really available for you to use. (Several interesting VF routes would be much easier to approach or descend from if we could ride the equipment + food supply lifts).

The Kompass 1:50000 maps I've bought recently came together with a mini-guidebook in German which included a page or two of via ferrata routes ("Klettersteig") and cable-protected hiking trails ("gesicherte Route") with short descriptions which are helpful for planning if you know some key German phrases like "sehr schwerig" (and mostly agree with the Werner guidebook).

VF around Oberstdorf

with less than 600m of down-walking + down-climbing . . .

(my map: Kompass 1:50000 Allgäuer Alpen Kleinwassertal)

  • Hindelanger (by Nebelhorn lift from Oberstdorf)  (Werner #5): Ridge traverse with lots and lots of American class 3 + 4 down-climbing and up-climbing on interesting rock with lots of hand-holds -- much of the climbing exposed to death or serious injury if fall, much of it without cable protection. Often very crowded. Normally done from the Nebelhorn lift top station down to the second lift station (Höfatsblick). Three escape routes (two officially marked) for those who want to make it a shorter day. Unlike most of these routes, I've actually done this one.

Some short sections are American class 5 (or 6?) and do require holding onto a steel cable and stepping on metal supports in order to make the climbing moves (not just for protection). There is cable protection on lots of the harder class 4 + class 5 sections. What's usually not protected by cables is much of the exposed class 3 (including down-climbing which is often harder and scarier than up-climbing) and perhaps easier class 4. (There's so many hand-holds on the rock that the cable is usually only required for protection (clipping VF kit to it), but I saw people using the cable to hold onto to help make climbing moves, especially down-climbing).

Great route (on an uncrowded day) for climbers solid on American class 3 + 4 terrain (especially down-climbing) with substantial exposure, and with previous experience using via ferrata equipment. Not a place for people without solid experience or who aren't sure about how they'll handle serious unprotected exposure to deadly fall. Great for climbers who want to make lots of moves directly on the rock (using the cable only for protection).

My feeling was that the first section (between Nebelhorn top station and first official escape trail) in the normal diretion was easier than the later sections. The later sections had more sustained sections of thoughtful climbing with exposure, and some significantly harder individual moves. Also seemed that perhaps the first section was better protected with cables (or over-protected?) than the later sections. I even saw a couple of eye-bolts not connected to cables in the first section (but none later) which I assume were for anchoring belays with rope. I'm guessing maybe that's so guides can get unqualified clients thru that section, declare victory, and take the first escape trail.

Crowded? Even outside summer season on a mid-week day in mid-September, I had to wait in a 30-minute line at Hoefenblick station mid-afternoon, for the lift to take me back down to the valley. Actually first lift ride up and the Hindelanger VF were nicely uncrowded (I met some local residents seizing the day to do the route). I guess the problem is that hikers and sightseers rode the lift up at various times during the day and spent varying amounts of time up high -- but many had a similar idea about what time to ride back down. Anyway after a great day of climbing I was feeling pretty mellow, and I had some extra snack food + drink, so the wait didn't really bother me. Local hiker/climbers I met said: Don't do it on weekends, just a continuous snake of slow-climbing people.

Less Down: 300 meters altitude difference between Nebelhorn top station and Höfatsblick second station. But . . .  the ridge route itself has lots + lots of short downs + ups, so I was already getting lots of impact on legs and ankles and feet even before main descent. Then the return trail down to the second lift station has additional ups, and therefore additional down sections -- and the return trail is pretty rocky, not easy hiking. So there's lots more downward impact than I would have guessed from a simple calculation from the topo map. Just climbing only to the second official escape trail might already be more than 600 meters downward, I'd guess. (Going to the unofficial third escape trail or to the northeast end of VF is clearly more impact than than any bicyclist who doesn't do lots of mountain climbing needs. I did it, and I was sore the next two days.)

Less Down: alternate strategy is to do the route in the opposite direction, from the second station to the top, so start by hiking out northeast on the hiking trail. Two problems with this: (a) unless you're sure it's an uncrowded day, there will be armies of people coming in the other direction who will be irritated that you're making them wait at crux sections where there's only one way to do the route -- and who will gladly instead make you wait as penalty for doing it the "wrong" way; (b) If you hike out too far, and then don't have time or weather to make it climbing all the way along the ridge to the top station, then you have to walk down one of the escape routes, so you end up doing all the down-walking, and even more distance on the rocky hiking trail, then you would if you'd done on it in the normal direction. A way to help with the second problem is to sleep the night before at the Edmund-Probst-Haus by the second lift station, and start hiking out very early -- but it doesn't help with the first problem, since the biggest "traffic jams" are likely to be earlier in the day and closer on the ridge to the Nebelhorn top station - (because farther out and later, climbers will be spread out more, and many will have given up and taken an escape route).

Less Down: yet another strategy: Do only part of the route in the normal direction, then turn around and do the same part in the opposite direction, return to the Nebelhorn top station and take the lift down. Likely this can only work on an uncrowded day, and likely it helps to wait and start a little later after the initial wave of climbers has made it thru the first section.

  • Geissalphorn traverse: very little down. One map shows a protected path or VF. Could start from the Vordere Seealpe (1267m) lift station (or from bottom), hike up trail trail toward Rubihorn, then climb over Geissalphorn (1953m) and Geissfuss (1981m) and continue east on trail to Hoefatsblick lift station (1929m), take the lift down (or stay overnight and be in position for early start on something else the next day). [S]

  • ridge south from Kanzelwand lift top station: supposed to have some cable-protected sections, and there's some peaks on it which are supposed to require climbing experience. How much down depends on how far out you go.

  • ? Mindelheim (Werner #4):  Werner guidebook says it's an interesting ridge route with technically serious VF moves. Unfortunately I don't think can get the total downhill to less than 700-750m -- so this route doesn't really belong on this list (that's why the question mark) -- but maybe there's a clever way around that in the second paragraph.

Less Down: Best approach is see for minimizing downhill is to hike up from the valley, do the VF route north-bound, and ride the lift down. This could be done either from the west side (Kleinwassertal by Mittelberg) with the Kanzelwand lift or from the east side (Stillachtal by Oberstdorf) with the Fellhorn lift. I think I would favor the Kleinwassertal side because: (a) less hiking distance and upward vertical if start from Wildental trailhead; (b) if decide to return to lift by way of the ridge, there's more escape trails to the west side; (c) less horizontal going to lift because the Kanzelwand lift top station is farther south. The disadvantage I see with the Kleinwassertal strategy is that the trailhead is much farther from the lift bottom station, so it requires making a shuttle with a bicycle (or taxi, or possibly bus?).

Less Down per day: Riding the lift both ways up and down reduces the uphill climbing, but that way I doubt it's possible to do the whole thing with less than 1300 meters of downward vertical -- also very ambitious to try do the whole thing in a single day if take the lift both up and down. If decide to sleep in a hut and use the lift, then there might be ways to split the downhill vertical between the days so that each day it stays under 600 meters. I think I would favor doing it from the west side (Kleinwassertal) using the Kanzelwand lift, likely doing the VF south-bound on the first day and sleeping in the Mindelheimer hut.

VF around Füssen + Reutte

  • Friedberger: (Werner #8 under the name Rote Flüh + Schartschrofen). Start at Nesselwängel (on road west from Reutte, Austria). Climb via Gimpel hut to Rote Flüh (2111m), descent to Gelbe scharte pass (roughly 1850m), then climb Schartschrofen (1973m).

Less Down: then continue north along ridge over Laeuferspitze (1956m) to top of gondola lift at Füssener Joechl (~1810m) and ride that down to Grän (about 5km WNW from Nesselwänger). From my reading of map: Total downhill about 500m (with total climbing up around 1350m)

my map: Kompass 1:50000 topo Füssen - Außerfern

  • Tegelberg (near Neuschwanstein + Forggensee) has a steep path up to top of lift (with big view of lake etc). Not a VF?

  • Aggenstein (near Pfronten on DE-AT border, W of Füssen) has a steep path, assisted by lifts from N. Not a VF?

VF around Oberammergau

  • Ettaler Mundl  (Werner #2): short + easy if take lift up from Oberammergau to by the Laber -- or could make it a longer hike (+800m climb) if start from bottom of lift.

  • ? Pürschlings: trail up from Unterammergau, not sure if not sure if the lift coming up west from Oberammergau helps access the steep path.

VF around Garmisch

  • from Zugspitze top station, very short VF scramble to Zugspitze summit, can also do upper part of Jubiläumsgrat out+back, upper part of Höllental out+back.

  • Schneefernerkopf (Werner #14): from Zugspitze cog railway top station: VF to top of Schneefernerkopf and back - (or perhaps not all the way back down to railway: could finish by hiking up to Zugspitze lift top station, but that might get rather expensive -- but perhaps not as expensive if first take lift down from lift top station.) (The area around the "alp" at top railroad station and Schneefernerkopf didn't look very inviting from the top of the Z lift -- perhaps it's prettier in early season with more snow? then perhaps need ice axe + crampons?)

  • Riffelscharte (2161m)  (Werner #11): VF supposed to be easy about +500m up to the pass and back from Riffelriss station (1685m) on Zugspitze cog railway. Supposed to have great views, and from the pass can also climb Riffeltorkopf (SW fr pass) or southern Riffelspitze (NE fr pass). (but descent of Höllental is very long, descent to Eibsee is like 1200m)

  • Alpspitze (Werner #10): up and down 600m from top of Alpspitz lift up to Osterfelderkopf.

We did it by climbing up the new VF route, descending the old one - (see Werner guidebook description). Seemed to me that most of the climbing is American class 3. Mostly not very difficult climbing moves for experienced climbers, and mostly not such obvious dramatic exposure -- but very sustained. Descent is mostly steep rocky hiking, with a ladder or two, some cable-protected sections, and two short tunnels. [S]

Less Down: No "less" -- Just ride the lift as high as possible, and then there's not much "approach" left -- the focus of the ascent is almost all on rock scrambling protected by cable, with a few ladders or other steel assistance. So if you like class 3 scrambling get lots of rock clinbing without lots of total upward vertical -- and therefore not so much downward vertical.

  • Partnachklamm: not a VF, but supposed to be a spectacular gorge hike -- to top of Eckbauer lift (away on the SE side of town along road toward Innsbruck).

  • Zugspitze (2963m) by Höllental (Werner #12): (very little downhill, but lots + lots of uphill)

Höllentalanger hut (1387m) -- hike up to it from Hammersbach (750m) about +650 meters uphill - (or hike mostly down to it from the top of the Alpspitz lift (Osterfelderkopf 2033m), but that would exceed my chosen downhill budget of downhill of 600 meters). From the hut it's about +1600 meters or more of uphill to reach the top of the highest peak in Germany.

Less Down: The lift comes up to almost the summit, so a short (mostly cable-protected) climb down and up goes from summit to top station of lift, which goes all the way back down to the valley.

  • ? Jubiläumsgrat:  If go the whole way west-bound from Alpspitze to Zugspitze -- very long trip.  (see notes in Werner #15 + #16, but that guidebook definitely does not recommend trying to climb the whole ridge).  Anyway I doubt that the ups + downs stay below 600m -- and maybe west half is not well-protected -- and if don't go all the way to the west end, then it's lots more downhill.

VF around Ehrwald, Austria

  • Zugspitze (2963m) by Wiener Neustadt hut (Werner #13): (very little down, but lots of uphill now that the W side lift has no mid-station).

base of lift (~1220m), Wiener Neustadt hut (2213m), so if split it into two days it's about +1000m uphill the first, +750m the second. With very little downhill.

Advantage of being on the west side is that you often can see bad weather coming. Disadvantage is that it's sunless and perhaps cold for much of the morning.

  • Hoher Gang:  supposed to be easy VF, from base of Ehrwalder Alm lift, about +560m up to Seebensee, descend gentle E like 5km to top of lift. (there’s also a very difficult VF parallel just E of it up a waterfall). (on the Kompass 1:50000 Wettersteingebirge Zugspitzgebiet map)

  • Gartner Wand (2377m) - (WSW from Lermoos near Ehrwald) supposed to be easy protected ridge route W from the Gruebenstein hut (2028m) at top of lift -- (like +400m up+back). (lift from Wolfratshauser hut (1751m) is only for equipment/supply). If could get a taxi ride up the road to Gartner Alm (1400m) on N side, then it’s +1050m climbing up and -400m in descent. (Note that Gartner Alm is only +400m from Lermoos, so could consider a car + walk/run (or bike) shuttle instead of taxi). (on the Kompass 1:50000 Wettersteingebirge Zugspitzgebiet map)

VF around Mittenwald (Germany)

  • Mittenwald VF short loop (Werner #21): can do a shorter loop by taking Karwendel lift to the top, going south and down on Heinrich-Noe-Weg, return north on Mittenwalder Höhenweg. (or in the opposite direction). [S]

  • VF Heinrich-Noe-Weg full route: Hike from trailhead (~950m) up to Brunnenstein hut (1560m) and continue NE to peaks near top of Karwendel lift (around 2400m). (so that would be around +1500m uphill, with very little down -- could break it into two days by sleeping in B hut).

  • VF Mittenwalder Höhenweg full ridge traverse (Werner #21): Only way to reduce downhill is to hike up to the south end of VF route by way of the Brunnenstein hut (1560m) -- or perhaps there is a Tiroler hut (2153m) or perhaps it only serves food, and do the route north-bound to the top of Karwendel lift. Trailhead is about 950m so likely want to break it into two days: climb about +600m the first day and +1000m or more on the second day, but with not much downhill.

VF around Seefeld, Austria

  • ridge walk between lifts, perhaps with easy VF: N-S between Noerdlinger hut at top of lift and Seefelder Joch 2060m at top of lift. (on the Kompass 1:50000 Wettersteingebirge Zugspitzgebiet map)

  • ridge Solsteinhaus - Nördlinger hut (Werner #22): perhaps very little down if start in Hochzirl (? perhaps with some bus-taxi-bike-car shuttle on road N up from Hochzirl ?), W along ridge from Solsteinhaus (1806m) to Nördlinger hut (2239m) (hut is by the Reither Spitze with big view) take lift down (? or continue N to Seefelder Joch?), train back to Hochzirl.

VF around Berchtesgaden

  • Königsee new VF toward Grünstein peak:  "Isidor-Klettersteig" [ info1 | info2 ] starts near the Königsee alpine slide (610m) perhaps only +400m, or perhaps +700m if go to top of peak (1304m)? It has an easier version ? B/C and harder version ? D/E ? -- ? could be OK for less experienced (if roped) ?

? Perhaps could be continued with hike by way of Kürointhaus to St Bartholeme (but more up, and steep down in the Rinnkendlsteig section) and return to Königsee by ferry boat.

  • Hoher Göll (Werner #36) near Rossfeldring road + Kehlstein):

Perhaps the best way to keep it interesting and minimize down is to start from the Rossfeldring road, hike up first to Purtschellerhaus, then climb up the Schusterweg to junction with Mandlgrat route: (optionally go to summit of Hoher Göll for views, which adds down vertical, but not steep), then descend Mandlgrat VF (makes sense to do it in this direction because it's less steep than Schusterweg), then descend to Kehlstein (perhaps with assistance of lift) and take bus down to Obersalzberg (with a bus- or bike- shuttle set up to get car -- or else one person can just hike from low on the Manndlgrat near Kehlstein on some trails back to the trailhead for Purtschellerhaus on the Rossfeldring road.

Other options: (a) If only go to the top of the Mandlgrat climbing section and turn around and go back the same way, then it’s likely less than 600m descent (especially if use the lift?). (b) If go only as far as the junction with the Schusterweg climbing path (instead of going all the way to the summit), then descend to the Purtschellerhaus, that might not be more that 600m descent, but the problem with this approach is that the descent is steeper.

  • Untersberg + Salzburger Hochthron (Werner #35) : supposed to be easy VF with ice cave. In order to get less down, need to set up a bus- or bike- shuttle between hiking route trailhead and base of lift (in which case there's lots of up, like +1300m). Or is there a way to do it out + back from top station of lift?

VF around Kufstein, Austria (Kaisergebirge)

  • Widauersteig / Scheffauer (2113m) (Werner #30): use the lift

(also see the castle in Kufstein)


more . . .

see also


concept words: roberts Europe European visit trip vacation holiday American visitor report reports

climbing: technical rock mountain free climb climber climbers

routes: climbs route routes tour tours map maps

places: cliff cliffs rocks mountains peak peaks group place state country region regions area areas

escalade escalades steig steigen

via ferrata: klettersteig cable-protected