The northern range of Ammergauer Alpen, starting, from east to west, at Kofel near the town of Oberammergau and ending at Tegelberg above the famous castle of Neuschwanstein, dreamland of our beloved king Ludwig II, is an enchanting landscape with many rocks, walls and spires amidst lush meadows or beautiful woods, a great scenery for hikes and ski touring. Among these many nice summits Hennenkopf is one of the more unknown destinations within this range.
Bordered by Halbammer valley to the north and Graswang valley to the south, Hennenkopf reaches a height of “only” 1768 m but offers nevertheless great views in all directions.
To the east Laubeneck, the twin summit to Teufelstättkopf, reaches a similar height. To the west the secondary summits of Dreisäulerkopf and Brunnenkopf mark some lower culmination points of this long northern range of Ammergau Alps.
Hennenkopf is a hiking destination in late spring, summer and (late) autumn. Ski touring is not adviseable and unusual due to very steep south slopes and dense woods and remote trailheads to the north. Neighbouring Pürschling and Teufelstättkopf are a more satisfying ski tour destination.
Despite of its peculiar denomination (Hennenkopf = hens head) this summit is worth a visit on its own or during a longer traverse on the ridge crest of that beautiful northern Ammergau range.
- the hiker parking area of Linderhof castle (parking fee)
- the parking area of Steckenberg ski area at Unterammergau, Pürschlingstraße / Liftweg
You reach the trailhead at Linderhof castle:
from Reutte / Lechtal / Füssen
The hiker parking area is the westernmost part of the huge Linderhof Castle parking area across the Linderhof creek.
You reach the trailhead at Unterammergau:
from Reutte / Lechtal / Füssen
Bus and railway connections are complicated. You have to use the Oberau railway station and then a bus to Unterammergau or Linderhof castle.
Main Routes Overview
Linderhof – Pürschling Route
Go north on the forest road starting at the hiker parking area. At the first trail junction take the right hand trail (signposts to Pürschling), it’s the trail number 232/E4. Follow this trail first level above the Linderhof castle park, then ascending and crossing two forest roads (signposts). The trail then ascends about 600 m of altitude difference through woods and meadows up to the trail junction with the → South Slope Traverse. Go right there and traverse to Pürschling and August Schuster Haus.
At August Schuster Haus turn left onto trail number 235 and ascend the Teufelstättkopf east ridge up to a saddle between Teufelstättkopf and Latschenkopf, a secondary summit of the first. From there Teufelstättkopf summit can be climbed within 10 minutes.
For Hennenkopf continue in western direction (trail number 235), first descending slightly then traversing steep slopes east and north of Laubeneck.
Pay attention if there is snow, the route can be very difficult then! There is a water filled chute on the north side of Laubeneck which can be completely iced in late autumn or early spring and make the route impassable without crampons and an ice axe.
After ascending steeply to the broad west ridge of Laubeneck – which can be summited on a narrow foot track within 10 minutes from our route – the trail continues nearly level to the broad col between Laubeneck and Hennenkopf. Beautiful scenery!
The trail ascends slightly and passes below the southern rock face of Hennenkopf to the west ridge. A narrow path (signpost “Hennenkopf”) branches off to the right; with some scrambling you reach the Hennenkopf summit steeply within 10 minutes.
Unterammergau – Pürschling Route
From the parking area enter the valley on the forest road (marked as route 22) and follow it up to Pürschling / August Schuster Haus. Easy walk, possible even during winter.
Follow then the route description of → Linderhof – Pürschling Route.
Linderhof – Dreisäulerkopf Route
Go north on the forest road starting at the hiker parking area. Follow this road, marked as trail number 231, in the direction of Brunnenkopfhaus / Klammspitze, crossing another forest road and then zigzagging up the south slopes until you reach a forest cabin.
A trail branches off to the right (signpost “Hennenkopf / Pürschling”, trail number 201 or M or E4a), take this trail in eastern direction first traversing the south slopes of Dreisäulerkopf, then following first the ridge crest of Hennenkopf west ridge, eventually traversing some steep southern exposed slopes until you reach a trail junction with the → South Slope Traverse. Take the left hand trail which zigzags back up to the ridge crest. Follow the ridge until the short summit path branches off to the right at the trail junction with the → Linderhof – Pürschling Route or the → Unterammergau – Pürschling Route. Follow that path to the summit.
South Slope Traverse
This is the direct connection between August Schuster Haus / Pürschling to the east and Bunnenkopfhaus to the west (trail number 201 or M or E4a). The route uses the south slopes of Laubeneck and Hennenkopf. You can use this trail if there is too much snow or ice on the Laubenkopf north and east side. Have a look on the map above to find out more about the traverse and combination options you have with the South Slope Traverse.
Red Tape & Accommodation
The German part of Ammergau Alps is a nature protection area.
There is a wide variety of rules including e.g. no camping, no fire.
Animal shall not be disturbed, plant shall not be collected.
Please stay on the trails and respect nature in this area.
You find accommodation at
Gear & Mountain Condition
Hennenkopf is mainly a hiking summit for spring, summer and autumn.
Good hiking gear is sufficient.
The southern trails near the summit and the ridge crest are narrow and traverse very steep slopes. Due to the geology of the area they are slippery when wet or icy when cold.
Please take into account that the east and north traverse of Laubeneck crosses a chute which can be completely iced in late autumn or early spring.
Maps & Guide Books
Topographische Karte 1 : 50.000, Karwendelgebirge, Werdenfelser Land, UK L 5, Bayerisches Landesvermessungsamt München
Topographische Karte 1 : 50.000, Füssen und Umgebung, Bayerisches Landesvermessungsamt München
Alpenvereinskarte Bayern, scale 1 : 25.000, number BY 7, Ammergebirge Ost, Pürschling, Hörndle; 2009
Alpenvereinsführer alpin, Allgäuer Alpen und Ammergauer Alpen;
Bergverlag Rother, München, 2008