The Ellmauer Halt (Halt is a strange name for a summit, it means meadow) is the highest peak of the Kaiser Range.
First touristic ascent: 1869 bei Karl Hofmann with J. Schlechter as a local guide. K. Hofmann (a lawyer from Munich) was co-founder of the German Alpine Association (DAV).
Overview Kaisergebirge (Kaiser range)
The Kaiser is a small limestone range in Northern Tyrol between Kufstein (Inn valley) and St. Johann. Nonwithstanding
its small size, it has some importance in the history of alpinism. The Kaiser range is build of limestone slabs which
are relatively solid (as compared to the Karwendel f.ex.) and was always an important playground of German and
Austrian rock climbers (Dülfer, Preuß, Schmitt, Wiessner, Buhl, Rebitsch and many more). In 1977, Kiene and Karl did
the first alpine UIAA grade VII climb in the Kaiser (Pumprisse, Fleischbank). This event led to the opening of the UIAA
grading scale for rock climbing which previously ended with VI.
The Kaiser consists basically of two chains, oriented in west - east direction. The southern chain is called the Wilder (wild) Kaiser, the northern chain is called the Zahmer (tame) Kaiser. These attributes characterize aptly the two chains.
The Ellmauer Halt is climbed from North (Kaiser valley) and South (Ellmau).
Kufstein (Sparchen) on the main railway line and highway Munich - Innsbruck - Brenner provides access to the Kaiser valley.
For the southern ascent, Ellmau (bus service from Kufstein) is the starting point.
With one's own car, one can conveniently drive up from Ellmau to Wochenbrunner Alm (parking fee, 1085 m).
No permit, no fees
Parking fee at Wochenbrunner Alm
When To Climb
Summer season: June to October
The Kaiser Range has lots of huts maintained either by the Alpine Association or privately.
Hut Overview Kaiser Range
For the Ellmauer Halt, 2 huts are important
Gruttenhütte (1619 m) situated south of the summit
Anton-Karg-Haus (829 m, Hinterbärenbad), situated in the Kaiser valley north of the summit, starting point for Kaiserschützensteig. Another website
The Ellmauer Halt is often climbed, especially on route 1, the easiest and shortest access to the summit. On fine summer weekend, you have to expect to meet a crowd. Route 2 is somewhat less crowded because of its length.
1. Normal route from south (Gamsänger Steig): scramble (I-II), fixed cables, some risk of stonefall, take a helmet. From Wochenbrunner Alm (1085 m, highest point accessible by car) an easy day trip (6-7 hours).
2. Normal route from north (Kaiserschützensteig): allows for the traverse of 2 more peaks of the subgroup of the Kaiser range: Gamshalt and Kleine Halt, scramble (I-III), fixed cable, harness recommended to click into the cables, some stretches very exposed. Very long day trip, better in 2 day (sleep at Hinterbärenbach see above).
3. Kopftörlgrat / East ridge: Most famous rock climb of moderate difficulty in the Kaiser range (UIAA III-IV) Very long east ridge of the Ellmauer Halt, starting at the Kopftörl, traversing several towers on the ridge.
4. many more climbing route: See guide book Schubert: Kaisergebirge, Alpenvereinsführer
All summit over 2000 m in the Kaiser Range
This is a list of all Kaiser summit over 2000 m, taken from Bergbuch.de, a collection of all summits of the Eastern Alps over 2000 m
If have climbed all those marked with a (*), if you need further information do not hesitate to ask. Most normal ascent require only some scrambling (up to UIAA grade II, sometimes secured with fixed cables)
2344m Ellmauer Halt (*), route see above
2328m Ackerlspitze (*), from south grade I, no cables, just a few rings to hold on, very exposed
2304m Treffauer (*), grade I, no cable, seldom climbed, not crowded
2281m Karlsspitze, hintere
2260m Sonneck (*), grade I, a few cables, nice traverse from south to north
2242m Goinger Halt, vordere
2227m Goinger Törlspitze
2192m Hintere Goinger Halt (*), easy to climb from Ellmauer Tor, often climbed, gives nice views into the central and east Kaiser
2190m Totenkirchl (easiest ascent UIAA III)
2111m Scheffauer (*), easy from south, nice via ferrata (Widauersteig) from north
2002m Kesselschneid, vordere (*) (highest summit of the Zahmer Kaiser, but the nearby Pyramidenspitze (1997 m) is much more often climbed)
Maps and guide books
There are lots of hiker's maps, but the best is the official map 1:25.000 by the Alpine Association Nr. 6
All guide books for the Kaiser range by the publishing house Rother.
An overview of the Kaiser range and tour dscriptions of its main summits with pictures (in German)
- Markus Stadler
This side contains lots of information about rock climbing in the Kaiser, some topos and information on recent developments (esp. new route, "renovation" (meaning setting up bolts) of old ones. The author is probably one of the best experts of the region.
Website maintained by a mountaineer from Rosenheim, focussing especially on hiking and climbing in the Kaiser range (in German)
- Gamsänger Klettersteig - Ellmauer Halt
Via-Ferrata.de - Klettersteigportal - Over 100 fixed rope routes. Moreover detailed information over climbing, alps, hiking and other outdoor activities.