We always look forward to summer. Those warm days with late sunsets are unbeatable. But here in the Allgäu there is something special to Autumn. When the days get shorter and the first snow on the summits appears it becomes quieter and more peaceful without the seasonal tourists. Allgäu in Autumn is simply beautiful.
It’s a Sunday morning and cold outside. We decide to slowly make our way to one of the most iconic mountains around, the Grünten. Roughly 1.000 meters of vertical are ahead of us and start off with a very steep and narrow tarmac road. Mountain roads here in the German Alps are always steep, but do make for an efficient ascent.
As we get higher and further around the mountain to the South face the road turns into a single trail where we hike a bike the second half. Everything is covered under a dusting of snow and the sun makes it very enjoyable. Our goal for today is the ‘Wächter des Allgäu’s’, which translates to ‘the guard of Allgäu’, the nickname of the mountain.
While we’re carrying our bikes on our shoulders, covering the last steep section before the summit, we run into some hikers. They surely didn’t expect seeing bikes up here! After a little chat and mutual agreement on the sheer beauty of the day we get to the summit.
Right on the summit is a memorial for mountain forces who died in the First World War. It’s a very impressive structure and marks a good place to take a break. The views from here are simply stunning. The Alps lie to the South and the flat openness of Germany unfolds to the North. ‘Living in the moment’ is perhaps exactly this and I’m very thankful to call this place home!
We’re getting ready and excited for the descent. Snowy and icy trails are followed by muddy and slippery action and make for some unpredictable good fun. After the first section of trail we get to the transmitter tower, rising 94 meters high, and are surrounded again by beautiful views. This moment is worth every meter of climbing!
The trail becomes a little more open and fast flowing before it dives into the dark forest. Big boulders and loose rocks define the technical character of the rest of the trail. It’s a little sketchy, but we make our way down and are sure not to miss all the sneaky lines and hidden jumps.
It’s a privilege to live here and call Allgäu home!
Words: Julia Weinl
Photos: Moritz Sonntag