The Perfect Bavarian Hike
Pretzels and beer, story-book castles, the sound of cow bells, and high mountain peaks - I knew that Bavaria was going to be a favorite even before we visited this past fall. We spent three nights in the small ski resort town Garmisch-Partenkirchen after four days in Amsterdam and before we headed to Prague. Bavaria was our break from the city and in hindsight I wish we had planned to spend a few more days there. We were there in late October and had just missed all the Oktoberfest festivities. The only downside to visiting towards the end of the season was that a lot of the high mountain biergartens were closed for the season.
After doing some research on hiking in the area we decided to head to King Ludwig's mountain palace, the Schachen House. The Schachen House is open to the public from the beginning of June till the beginning of October (depending on snow conditions). Even though we knew the palace would be closed for the season we headed up for the epic views of Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain.
Turn by Turn Directions
Park at the Olympic Ski Stadium. After about a twenty-five minute walk down a quite road from the Olympic parking lot you'll reach the Partnachklamm Gorge. The Gorge is open from 8am-6pm and costs 5 euros to walk through. The gates close promptly at 6pm. If you reach the gates after 6pm on your way back you'll have to take the long way back to your car above the gorge, which is an extra 3 miles.
After leaving the gorge follow the river upstream for a bit further until you reach a junction in the way. Hang a left and then continue straight uphill into the forest via the Kälbersteig trail. From here you gain the most elevation. The Kälbersteig path will take you uphill for a couple miles, then bring you to the Königsweg path that will take you all the way the Palace. The trails are all well marked and easy to follow.
Total Miles: 14.4
Elevation Gain: 4934
Highest Point: 6122
Equipment: weatherproof clothing, plenty of food and water, and your 10 essentials.
Download my Gaia route to help guide your way.