Zwiesel is a three peak ridge between the southeast Bavarian alpine foreland to the north and the valley of Bad Reichenhall to the southeast.
Immediate neighbour of the nearly equally high Hochstaufen, the three Zwiesel summits, belonging to the northernmost Berchtesgaden Alps, see less visitors than the more popular Hochstaufen. Maybe that is due to the wellknown Pidinger Klettersteig, a difficult via ferrata from Piding to Hochstaufen summit. Maybe that is because of Reichenhaller Haus below the summit of Hochstaufen, offering great views and Weißbier on the sunny southern terrace.
On the Zwiesel summits however you will find more solitude, nice meadows for a nap and equally good views to the south, west and east. And there is Zwieselalm on the south slopes of the mountain waiting with food and lodging, if needed.
Showing a more rugged and rocky appearance to the north and, when viewed from the west or east a sharp and peaked outline, Zwiesel is a broad and comfortable looking ridge to the south.
Zwiesel, sometimes named Hinterstaufen, consists of three summits:
All three summits can be traversed easily using a connecting trail which runs east – west over the dwarf pine overgrown ridge.
There are five main hiking routes to Zwiesel summits and two winter / spring ski routes. Besides that Zwiesel is the starting or ending point of the Hochstaufen – Zwiesel traverse and part of the E 4 / Maximiliansweg, one of the European long distance hiking trails.
Main trailheads for Zwiesel peaks are:
For Bad Reichenhall / Gasthof List trailhead use highway A 8 from Munich or Austrian highway (toll road) A 1 to the exit Piding / Bad Reichenhall
Follow the road number 20 to Bad Reichenhall. Leave the road to cross the river Saalach at the signposts to Schneizlreuth, Karlstein, Nonn.
Immediately after the bridge turn right at the traffic light and follow the road to Nonn. Where the road turns to western direction go straight on until the road ends at Gasthof List with a parking area for guests of the inn and for hikers, too.
For Adlgaß trailhead leave the highway A 8, München – Salzburg – at the exit Traunstein / Siegsdorf and follow the road number 306 to Inzell.
From Bad Reichenhall follow road number St2101 and 305 to Inzell.
At Inzell follow the local roads to the east, passing Würau, Eck and arriving at the parking area of Adlgaß.
For Weißbach or Jochberg trailheads go on road 305 to Weißbach. The Weißbach trailhead is at the western end of the village.
Alternatively follow the Jochbergstraße at Weißbach to the little village of Jochberg and to a parking area at the end of that road.
Normal Routes Overview
There are five main routes leading up to the summit ridge.
Red Tape & Accommodation
There is no red tape as far as I know.
All types of accommodation can be found at
Mountain huts and inns
Gear, Mountain Condition & Maps
Zwiesel is an all season mountain. Winter / spring ski routes are not very frequented because Berchtesgaden Alps offer more demanding and interesting ski routes.
The traverse Hochstaufen – Zwiesel is normally open in april / may until the first heavy snowfalls.
The hiking routes require full hiking gear, good shoes and – as to Hochstaufen – Zwiesel traverse route – some rock scrambling experiences (UIAA grade I, mainly secured with fixed ropes).
The ski routes require full ski hiking gear and avalanche gear.
Check the Bavarian avalanche bulletin here.
The following maps can be recommended:
Alpenvereinskarte Bayerische Alpen
Scale 1 : 25.000
Number BY 19, Chiemgauer Alpen Ost, Sonntagshorn
Scale 1 : 50.000
Number WK 14 Berchtesgadener Land-Chiemgauer Alpen ISBN: 3-85491-017-7
Check the weather forecast here.
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