The first thing one notices is that the entire range – with the exception of the steep valleys and gullies on the north east side – is covered from top to bottom in vegetation, mainly in pine forest and bushes. Sometimes it can be a bit tedious to get past these…
Since 1928 there is a hotel just below the summit of the Predigtstuhl, and a cable-car (Predigtstuhlbahn) connecting the city of Bad Reichenhall with the hotel on the mountain. This cable-car is the oldest in the world of all cable-cars that still function in the original condition – it still is exactly as it was built between 1925 and 1928!
The Lattengebirge is especially known for the bizarre rock formation of the “Steinerne Agnes” or “Petrified Agnes” (about 1300 meters above sea level) and the formation known as the “Sleeping Witch”, also named “Montgelas Nose” (here is some information upon Count Maximilian von Montgelas), a bafflingly shaped rock the eye cannot miss when travelling on the road between Berchtesgaden-Bischofswiesen and Bad Reichenhall.
Less known is the “Teufelsloch” or “Devil’s Hole” upon 1585 meters, a five meters long natural rock portal with a span of about 2,5 meters situated about 500 meters above the “Sleeping Witch”.
Even if heightwise the Lattengebirge is of inferior importance compared with other groups in the Berchtesgaden Alps, it is still something of a “secret tip”. Along the trail between the Predigtstuhl and the Karkopf, you get fascinating views, unlike anywhere else, upon the Watzmann group that are of a wildness that makes you feel at times as if you were in the Canadian Rockies.
Getting ThereThe main place to head for at first is Bad Reichenhall. From Bad Reichenhall, there are the roads (all in excellent condition) leading either westwards in the direction of Lofer-Innsbruck via Unterjettenberg to Taubensee (at Unterjettenberg, turn left and follow the B 305 in the direction of Ramsau-Berchtesgaden) or along the east side of the Lattengebirge (B 20) past Bayrisch Gmain, Hallthurm and Bischofswiesen to Berchtesgaden. Selboden is on this road.
Nearest airports to Bad Reichenhall: Munich, Salzburg.
Coming by car: From Munich, take the motorway bound for Salzburg and exit at Bad Reichenhall. Distance (from the Franz-Josef-Strauss-Airport): 171,9 km, duration: 1 h 41 min.
From Salzburg, follow the signs to Innsbruck and take the road leading over the Walserberg (national frontier) via Schwarzbach-Marzoll to Bad Reichenhall. Distance (from Salzburg Airport): 12,5 km, duration: 15 min.
Coming by train: Alight in Freilassing, the border station on the Munich-Salzburg line, and take the train bound for Berchtesgaden. All trains stop in Bad Reichenhall. From Salzburg there are also direct post-busses.
RoutesThere are several possible points to start hikes up into the Lattengebirge, such as Baumgarten on the Saalachsee lake, Taubensee on the southern end of the range, Selboden-Ulrichshof on the east side, or, for the more audacious, even Bad Reichenhall itself. The most ideal starting point though is undoubtedly Bayrisch Gmain (530m), 3 kilometers south east of Bad Reichenhall and right next to the Austro-German border. Landscapewise quite exciting is the Alpgartensteig trail (difficult) leading from Bayrisch Gmain up a wild valley to the Hochschlegel (1688m), from where one can continue using the easy path along the ridge to the Karkopf. Duration: ca. 4 hours.
One can save oneself four hours of ascent, though, by taking the Predigtstuhlbahn from Bad Reichenhall-Kirchberg to the Predigtstuhl, and then walking along the crest, first descending gently towards the Schlegelmulde col, on which there is also a restaurant, then rising 140 meters to the Hochschlegel on 1688 meters. From here, follow the trail leading along the crest (here is where you get my favorite views upon Watzmann and Hochkalter!), descending slightly and then rising past a col to the summit of Karkopf (1739m). From the Karkopf, descend 100m to the col separating it from the Törlkopf (1704m), follow the path leading around the Törlkopf to the Törlalm, and here, turn left and follow the path leading down to the beautifully situated Mordaualm. Continuing to follow the ridge over the Törlschneid crest is hardly recommendable, as there are still countless fallen trees lying around, having been brought down by the severe storms that raged in meridional Europe during the past years, and one finds oneself constantly having to figure out how to get over, past or under these enormous tree-trunks one after the next and through all of their branches. Last time I was on the Törlschneid, in November 2008, it was a really exhausting matter. From Mordaualm, follow the forest road down to Taubensee, 2 km north west of the village of Ramsau.
Red TapeNon in particular that I know of.
CampingNo camping allowed in the Lattengebirge, but there are various possibilities in the valleys surrounding it.
External linksSchedule for the "RamBus", the Ringlinie Ramsau (stops at Taubensee)
The Predigtstuhlbahn (unfortunately there is no English translation)