Zugspitze (2962m) via Stopselzieher

Via Ferrata · Zugspitz Arena Tyrol
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Difficulty
A/B difficult
Distance
31.2 km
Duration
16:36h
Ascent
2150 m
Descent
2430 m
Public transport friendly Round trip Scenic Summit route
Starting from Ehrwald, this route offers the shortest and quickest path up to the Zugspitze, the top of Germany. For the Stopselzieher, an easy klettersteig (A/B), a  klettersteig set is optional, however it is advised to wear a helmet due to the prevelance of falling rocks on this steep section.

Date: August 27, 2016

As an expat living in Munich, climbing to the top of Germany was definitely on my bucket list. Knowing that we would have a lot of elevation gain and distance to cover on the route (2150 m and 31.2 km to be exact), we opted for the 5:32 train from Munich to Ehrwald. 

Off to an early start, we quickly made it onto the hiking path and started the ascent. About an hour into hiking  we were met by a line of 20 hikers. Yes, this is a popular route so expect a lot of people on the trail during the high summer months. We made our way around the group and continued upward. 

The hike up to Wiener-Neustädter Hütte is quite nice and I didn't really feel any fatigue from the elevation gain. After the hut is when the fun begins. What looks like a cliff face, needs to be climbed. It looks more intimidating than it really is. The A/B klettersteig itself is quite manageable without equipment but due to the crowds of hikers a helmet is a must to protect from falling rocks. 

I really enjoyed the klettersteig section with many iron ladders and steel cables for security. It never felt too exposed or scary. The final push is on steep scree and then on rocks up to the summit. 

We didn't really make it to the cross through the hoards of people at the top. Most of the crowd was coming from the seilbahn. We didn't even try to get a group picture like we normally would at the peak. Rather we sat down for a beer and cake and then escaped out of the crowds as quickly as possible. 

The descent offered awesome views in the valley and required some care over the steep rocky paths. We realized that we had 20 km downhill to cover so we might as well enjoy it. We took our time, stopping at the Knorrhütte and continuing down to the Parnach river.

My feet ached over the distance but we pushed on and finished just as it was starting to darken into night making the 9:00 pm train back to Munich. 

Although this a must-do hike for anyone living in Germany, be warned that it is very crowded and touristy near the top which taints the experience in some ways. 

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Difficulty
A/B difficult
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
2950 m
Lowest point
701 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
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Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
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Dec

Start

Ehrwald (985 m)
Coordinates:
Geographic
47.410250, 10.915310
UTM
32T 644492 5252533

Destination

Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Public transport

Public transport friendly

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

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Equipment

outdooractive.com User
Responsible for this content
Anna Flessner

Travel Guide: Via ferratas in Zugspitz Arena Tyrol


Questions & Answers

Question about Cédric Vander Stukken · July 10, 2020 · Community
Hello, is this free or do we need to book tickets somewhere?
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