Walk to Drei Annen Hohne & take the Brockenbahn Train to Schierke
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View from BrockenPhoto: Minna Harshbarger, Macs Adventure
Today you will experience a real highlight of the Harz Witches Trail, the Brocken (1,141m). Germany's famous writer, philosopher and statesman, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, was well known for having summited Brocken in 1777, 1783 and 1784 and from here on you will be following the Goetheweg footpath to the summit.
The Brocken has always featured in myths and legends of witches and devils and interestingly gave its name to the Brocken Spectre, an optical illusion whereby your shadow, surrounded by a rainbow, is cast on the clouds below. Enjoy the view from the highest mountain in the Harz before descending on foot to Drei Annen Hohne. From this hamlet, take the legendary Brockenbahn steam engine (included) to Schierke, where you will spend the night.
Track typesShow elevation profile
In rainy weather, the trails can be muddy and slippery. Take footwear with good tread that gives you support. Inquire about the current weather conditions (e.g. in your accommodation or at the local tourist information office).
Pay attention to any diversion information. On almost 100 kilometres, forestry work or storm damage can result in short-term diversions and road closures. You can find current trail information at www.harz-hexenstieg.de and www.harzinfo.de/erlebnisse/wandern/harzer-hexen-stieg/aktuelle-hinweise.html.
Tips and hints
Train timetable for the Brockenbahn can be found here: www.hsb-wr.de
Bus timetable can be found here: www.hvb-harz.de/regionalverkehr-wernigerode
The Harzer-Hexen-Stieg (Harz Witches Trail) is incredibly well waymarked and signposted along the full route. At regular intervals, the trail is signposted with the red signal edges that are common throughout the Harz (header "Harzer-Hexen-Stieg").
In the national park, the path is marked on the unmistakable wooden sign trees with the Hexen-Stieg logo (white witch in a green circle).
START in Torfhaus, follow the path signed posted as it goes along dirt footpaths, pass the Torfhausmoor. Follow the Goetheweg path, direction Brocken.
Cross the Quitschenberg mountain and reach the Eckersprung rest area. Arrive at the Brockenbahn train tracks.
Behind the Harzer-Hexen-Stieg station, “Stichwortfahnen”, CONTINUE along the natural tree line at about 1100 m and finally reach the summit of the Brocken.
Descend via Brockenweg Path, direction Drei Annen Hohne. Following the Hexen Steig Trail markers.
Circle round the Erdbeerkopf (strawberry head) and follow the Glashüttenweg Path to the Wormkegraben Ditch, the oldest man-made ditch in the Harz Mountains.
CONTINUE STRAIGHT, pass a beautiful vantage point at Trudenstein rock formation. At the next junction TURN SHARPLY RIGHT and follow the descending path to the village of Drei Annen Hohne.
ARRIVE in Drei Annen Hohne to finish today's walk and jump on the Brocken Bahn to reach Schierke for your overnight stay.
Book recommendations for this region:
Recommended maps for this region:
Sturdy hiking boots, layered clothing items and a waterproof/wind-break layer may all be required. Make sure to check the weather before you go to see if you need suncream or a waterproof layer, as the weather can change quickly.
Ensure your phone is fully charged; if you doubt the battery will last throughout the hike, it could be beneficial to bring a power bank.
Take plenty of water for the days walk - especially if a high temperature in the summer.
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