A standalone tower, not far away from human habitation, a handful of routes, most of them aid routes, easy access - you would think, Hebelfels would be one of the most crowded sandstone towers in the Südpfalz Area. It is not and the most likely reason must be the abundance of bigger, better known or more difficult formations in the close vicinity. And yet, Hebelfels is one of the most prominent towers anywhere in the greater area.
It can be found towering directly above the cemetery of the village of Erfweiler. The south face, which is split by a huge chimney, starts right behind the last graves of the enclosure. A few steps across sandy ground take you there, right to the bease of the longest route with an overhanging roof close to the summit. The other faces are only half as high but also offer easy access to the well structured sandstone.
Hebelfels has two summits, which are separated by a slight depresssion. Here from both sides, the north and the south, chimneys lead up to the platform. Those chimneys are the most obvious routes but there are also ledge routes which kind of wind around the tower. The north face is overgrown by moss and grass and on all sides of the formation you can find small trees growing out of cracks. A sure sign that Hebelfels is not climbed often.
Recently, a big storm knocked over most of the trees, which used to surround Hebelfels. The whole area has been cleared and the tower now stands alone on its plateau, easily visible from the village itself. Two hiking trails lead close to the formation, one about 500m to the north, the other 50m to the south-west. For the remaining steps you are forced to bushwhack through the undergrowth before you reach the Hebelfels platform.
Climbing Routes on Hebelfels
There are only 8 routes oon Hebelfels, most of which, however, have not been freed. The routes were established late with the first one, Südwandkamin, a chimney route first climbed in 1967. As so often, Hans Laub pioneered many of the routes, most of them in the 1970s.
Rather than reprinting the copyrighted information from the site of the Vereinigung Pfälzer Kletterer I link to their routes database directly with some summary info. Here is the link to the complete database.
|Hebelfels||Hebelfels||8 routes with variations ranging from 1 - V A1|
Getting ThereHebelfels is located right in Erfweiler, right above the local cemetery. The shortest access is from the road, which connects Erfweiler with neighbouring Dahn. Erfweiler itself is hidden very deep inside Pfälzerwald and thus the itineraries are a bit longish. The closest airports are at Frankfurt and Stuttgart so the itineraries start there too.
From FrankfurtThere are two possible routes which both take equally long
- Via Ludwigshafen
- From Frankfurt take motorway A5 southward to Darmstadt.
- There change to A67 south.
- At Viernheimer Dreieck turn onto A6 west. Leav
- e it at Frankenthaler Kreuz for A61 south.
- At Mutterstädter Kreuz take A65 south until you reach Landau.
- At Landau turn on B10 west.
- At Hinterweidental turn onto B427 south which will take you to Dahn.
- In Dahn, after you have driven around Jungfernsprung there is an intersection directly in the town centre. Turn off left onto K39 which takes you to Erfweiler.
- In Erfweiler don't follow the main road (K39) where it bends right to Schindhard. After some 300m there is a parking lot on th eright hand side.
- From the parking lot hike back into the village and head directly for the crag. The residential road at its base passes to the south of the formation, where a small path leads right up to the rock.
- Via Kaiserslautern
- From Frankfurt take motorway A3 west
- At Mönchhofdreieck turn onto A67 south
- At Rüsselsheimer Dreieck take A60 west
- At Kreuz Mainz Süd take A63 south
- At Kreuz Kaiserslautern turn onto A6 west
- At Kreuz Landstuhl turn onto A62 south
- At Pirmasens turn onto B10 east
- At Hinterweidental take B427 south to Dahn
- In Dahn turn onto K39 to Erfweiler
- Follow the instructions above
- Take motorway A8 to Karlsruhe
- At Karlsruher Dreieck turn north onto A5
- Tke the next exit to head for A65
- At Kandel you can leave onto B427 which will lead you directly to Dahn where you can turn right onto K39 to Erfweiler. However the detour to Landau and B10 (see above) will take less time as the roads are better (three or four lanes)
Yes, there is red tape and lots of it. The sandstone of Südpfalz forms lots of caves and overhangs. Though this makes it most interesting for climbers, two species of birds of prey compete for this habitat: the peregrine falcons and the eagle owls. Both are endangered and wherever there is a eagle owl pair found nesting in the sandstone the crag will immediately be closed. Generally this closure lasts from the beginning of each year through Aug. 1st. If breeding is not successful the closures will be cancelled even before that date. For a list of closures see the Closure List of PK.
The cliffs on the south side of Rindsberg are rather often closed to climbing. Never all of them so you should check the link above before venturing out in the first half of the year.
The use of magnesia is not allowed in the whole Südpfalz region. This is rather a directive or an arrangement than an outright law. Thus you probably will get away with using it but do so only when absolutely necessary. Magnesia closes the pores which you find in the sandstone and together they form a smooth surface which will get very slippery in wet conditions. The rule of thumb is to use magnesia in the highest difficulty sections and only extremely sparingly.
A list of guidelines can be found here (in German).
AccommodationYou can find hotels and apartments in Erfweiler and in neighbouring Dahn. Have a look at the following links:
There are two campgrounds, one in Dahn at Neudahner Weiher one in nearby Bruchweiler-Bärenbach.
Maps & Books
As for maps there is a good overview map (1:50000) by Kompass Verlag but the best ones are the official topographic maps by the state government of Rheinland Pfalz, scaled 1:50000, 1:25000 and 1:5000. All official maps can be found on the web page of Landesvermessungsamt Rheinland Pfalz
- Naturpark Pfälzer Wald
Kompass Map WK766
- Annweiler am Trifels
LVA RLP Map L6712
LVA RLP Map 6712
There are a number of climbing guidebooks on the region of Südpfalz. The best ones, however, have been published privately and are sold only in selected bookshops of the region.
B. & J.-Th. Titz
- Klettern im Buntsandstein
U. Daigger, H.-J. Cron
Westpfälzische Verlagsdruckerei St. Ingbert
- Pfalz - Klettern im Buntsandstein des Pfälzer Felsenlands
J. Richter, S. Tittel
- Pfalz ++, Klettern im Buntsandstein
R. Burkard, P. Weinrich
- Klettern im Naturpark Pfälzerwald
- Pfalz & Nordvogesen en bloc
A. Wenner, Y. Corby, I. Bald