FolkestoneJack's Tracks

The Almbach Gorge

Posted in Berchtesgaden, Germany by folkestonejack on June 28, 2016

The Almbach Gorge (Almbachklamm) is not the most obvious of attractions around Berchtesgaden, but it was the perfect complement to our morning at the Konigsee. Where the lake presented us with a vista of immense scale the gorge gave us an intimate walk alongside the rushing waters of the Almbach with hardly a soul around.

One of the 29 bridges in the Almbach Gorge

One of the 29 bridges in the Almbach Gorge

We started out at the Kugelmühle (marble mill), paid up three euros each for entry (at a small hut at the beginning of the trail) and began our trek. The trail presents a succession of watery delights that prompts many an oooh or ahhh as it twists and turns, rather than a single standout feature.

The full 2.8km distance of the trail takes you along a path that hugs the rock walls, up 320 steps, over 29 bridges and through one tunnel. The original route was constructed in four weeks by 250 soldiers of the 1. Ingolstädter Pionierbatallions in 1894 (look out for the marble tablet at the tunnel entrance commemorating their achievement) though the dam itself is a good 60 years older.

If you take the trail all the way you will find yourself at the Theresienklause dam (named after Therese of Bavaria, the wife of King Ludwig I) but we cut the route a little short, turning round after reaching the Sulzer waterfall.

The recent rainfall probably helped to make the gorge even more spetacular than ever, though it also guaranteed us a soaking – one corner of the path had turned into an open air shower that was only passable if you accepted a drenching! Having passed through this once, we remembered that we would have to pass back through on our way back…

A shower was unavoidable if you wanted to cross the bridge!

A shower was unavoidable if you wanted to cross the bridge!

At the outset I thought it would be a pleasant walk but probably nothing more than that, deliberating long and hard over its inclusion in our itinerary. Instead, I was completely taken back by how delightful and enjoyable an experience it was and am rather surprised to say that it was the highlight of our day.

Practicalities

We took the 840 (Berchtesgaden-Salzburg) bus to reach the gorge and there are two bus stops within easy reach of the start of the trail. We got off at Almbachklamm on our way to the gorge and this takes you on a signed route past the Gasthaus Almbachklamm, through a field and then alongside a river (The Berchtesgadener Ache) to the marble mill (Kugelmühle). On our return we walked from the mill down Kugelmühlweg to the second bus stop (Kugelmühle Marktschellenberg) and this is clearly a little closer.

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