20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Start/Finish at Mittenwald 912m
Highest point reached was summit of Hoher Kranzberg 1391m.
Round distance circa 20 kms
Vertical altitude gain of circa 550m
Total time from start to finish of 5 hrs 45 mins
Weather was sunshine
Mittenwald Mittenwald
The lack of access to the higher and more difficult mountain tracks due to very deep snow and avalanche risk meant I had busy evenings in my Gasthof looking for alternatives. Mittenwald was a village I hadn't been to since October 2004 but there was supposed to be a straightforward "winter hiking track" to the summit of the Hoher Kranzberg. So a bus to Garmisch-Partenkirchen station and then a train saw me walking through a very snowy Mittenwald at around 08.30 on a cold morning. 20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Track to Hoher Kranzberg Track to Hoher Kranzberg
Some very steep steps on the edge of the village got me working hard before joining the ploughed track up towards the Hoher Kranzberg Gipfel Haus. After a while I was walking in bright sunshine on the track, which in some places had a dedicated and fully ploughed footpath, icy enough underfoot to make me put my crampons on.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Wettersteingebirge from track to Hoher Kranzberg
The views got better and better as height was gained: at St Anton the Wettersteingebirge dominated the South West.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Austrian Alps from track to Hoher Kranzberg
Looking back to the South East a lot of Austrian summits were clearly visible on this superb hiking day. A day that later on was shared with a lot of other hikers: something I had not seen before in a Bavarian winter. That said something for about the only mountain in the area that had a publicised winter route to it's summit.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Hoher Kranzberg
Hoher Kranzberg summit is the small hutte at the top left hand side, with the much larger Gipfelhaus nearer the centre.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Wettersteingebirge
A short walkup past the Gipfelhaus and I was on the summit, with a superb view over to the Wettersteingebirge.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Hoher Kranzberg Summit Alpspitze and Hoher Gaif
The summit hutte was a lovely place to stop and take in the view, which included the Alpspitze and Hoher Gaif to the West.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Karwendelgebirge
To the East the bulky Karwendelgebirge towered over Mittenwald.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Track from Hoher Kranzberg
I enjoyed some hot coffee from my SIGG flask and a Mars bar before tearing myself away from such an idylic summit. The track back looked wonderful with the fresh snow having given a superb overal whiteness to the scene.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Hoher Kranzberg track Hoher Kranzberg to Lautersee track
I started off on the same track I had come up on, with the Karwendelgebirge always visible in front. But at the St Anton Hutte I found that the zig zag path straight down to Lautersee was open, if a bit narrow, so I took that route in the deep snow.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Hoher Kranzberg to Lautersee track Lautersee
After the descent the narrow path joined a wider track that led on towards the Lautersee. Another track kept open in the winter for hikers: something I had not seen elsewhere to any extent in Bavaria. And from the number of people I had seen hiking up to Hoher Kranzberg it is quite clear there is a significant demand for such open winter routes.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Lautersee
The Lautersee was of couse frozen right over with a layer of snow on the ice.
20th Jan hike continued














20th January: Mittenwald - Hoher Kranzberg - Lautersee - Gletscherschliff
Gletscherschliff
I decided to extend my hike to re-enter the South end of Mittenwald and then head out to the Gletscherschliff, another river gorge, this one with a large waterfall inside. The track into the gorge was closed, but the view of the outside was worth the effort. Then a fast walk back to Mittenwald and the first of two buses back to Farchant.
22nd Jan hike Jan 2006 Trip Index Key to route descriptions     Back to Main Index

















Key to Route Descriptions
Throughout this web site I have tried to adopt a consistent approach to the way I show the summarised hike details in the blue text table shown at the start of each hike. Below is an explanation of how the various parts of that text table are arrived at.

Start and Finish
The main locations, usually a village or nearest village, from where the hike is started and ended. The altitude of the start and finish taken by comparing my exact starting point with the appropriate contour line or printed height from the relevant Topographische Kart 1:25000, Bayersisches Landesvermessungsamt München map.

Round distance in kms
The total distance actually hiked. Includes any "excursions" off the main route. The kms shown are a very broad estimate only. I have yet to find a way of getting anything like an accurate distance for my hikes even using the 1:25000 maps. Frequent zig zags and height gains and undulations are the main problems to deal with!

Vertical altitude gain
Not the height difference between the starting point and the highest point reached. It is an estimate of the total metres I have ascended during the hike. It will include all significant undulations and all "excursions" off the main route. Using the detailed 1:25000 maps as above, it is possible with a little care and effort to get quite close to an accurate figure.

Total time from start to finish
Time from my gasthof back to my gasthof after the hike if no public transport is involved. Or from leaving a bus stop or railway station and back to a bus stop or railway station at the end of the hike. Includes all breaks. My ascent rate is slow, never more than about 300 metres per hour, so most other people would complete the hikes quicker. I often complete a hike with no stop lasting longer than a few minutes, but picnic stops and visits to huttes taking longer than that will be mentioned in the text.

Weather
A broad description of the weather conditions during that hike. Any temperatures usually taken from the nearest weather recording site that I can find, (done on my return to England), or from local TV reports.
January 2006 Trip Index    Back to Main Index