View towards Glockner group in the west from the summit
, 2893 meters high, the name meaning "Peak of the grey slope", is located on the main ridge
of the Hohe Tauern
, right on the border between the two Austrian federal states of Salzburg
, and is a neighboring peak of Ankogel
(3246m), which rises just 2 kilometers further east. This peak is one that can even be done as a family hike with children, as there’s an easy trail all the way up a very wide and only moderately steep slope and it’s a mere 243 meters (797 feet) height difference between the top station of the Ankogelbahnen
cable-car on 2650 meters and the summit. This is also the outset for the normal way up Ankogel from the south west (see also Vid Pogačnik’s route page
), The time needed for the trail to Grauleitenspitze lies somewhere between 45 minutes and an hour, if you take it calmly. Nevertheless, also this summit is a great spot – spectacular views to the mountains of Carinthia and East Tyrol to the south, the Glockner Group to the west, the Gastein mountains to the north and Ankogel and Hochalmspitze to the east. A very princely “consolation prize” for those who don’t have the time or energy to go up Ankogel and back down, but who would nevertheless like to be “on top”…
Ankogel (3246m) and Hochalmspitze (3360m) seen from the summit of Grauleitenspitze
The base for this hike is Mallnitz
Nearest airports: Munich, Salzburg, Klagenfurt
Coming by car from Munich and Salzburg:
From Munich Airport, get on the motorway and follow the signs to Salzburg
. Follow the A8 motorway
in the direction of Salzburg until just shortly after crossing the Austrian border (From Salzburg Airport it’s only a couple of kilometers to this point). Here, switch to the A10
(Tauernautobahn) in the direction of Villach/Klagenfurt. Follow the A10 all the way to the turn-off just shortly before Spittal an der Drau in Carinthia. Here, switch to the B100
, following the signs to Lienz as far as Lurnfeld
. Turn right, follow the B106
, then the B105
Distance between Munich Airport and Mallnitz: 347.7 km (216 miles); duration: 3 hours 21 minutes.
Distance between Salzburg Airport and Mallnitz: 178.1 km (111 miles); duration: 1 hour 47 minutes.
Coming by car from Klagenfurt:
Take the A2 motorway
. Here, switch to the A10
in the direction of Salzburg/Munich and follow it as far as the mentioned turn-off to the B100
in the direction of Lienz, just after Spittal an der Drau
. From here, proceed as described above.
Coming by means of public transportation:
All fast trains (there’s one every two hours in both directions) between Salzburg and Klagenfurt stop in Mallnitz-Obervellach
. Very often there are even direct trains from Munich. From the train station of Mallnitz there are post-buses for the remaining five kilometers to the bottom station of the Ankogelbahnen cable-car.
The Ankogelbahnen operate during the summer period daily except for Mondays and Tuesdays every half hour between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. For information, call up +43 4785 8110.
The way to the summit
Going up the spacious scree slope leading to the summit Grauleitenspitze and Ankogel (the Carinthian side)
There are, naturally, many ways of combining Grauleitenspitze with far longer hikes, like for instance the spectacular Göttinger Weg
, an Alta Via of about 12 kilometers length leading from Hagener hut on Mallnitzer Tauern via Mindener hut to Hannover hut and continuing for another 5 kilometers as Goslarer Weg
to the self-catering Celler hut. As the Grauleitenspitze is in the direct vicinity of the Hannover hut
, it’s one that can be “taken along” on this route. But, as there is the cable-car right up to 2650 meters, a mere 79 meters below Hannover hut which is perched on the summit of Arnoldshöhe and thus already on the ridge, Grauleitenspitze can easily be done as a rewarding half-day activity. A nice idea would also be to reserve a night at the Hannover hut and thus have the possibility of witnessing a sunset and also a sunrise on this so near-by summit.
From the top station of the Ankogelbahnen, follow the trail that leads through some scree to the col below Arnoldshöhe (where the Hannover hut stands), on the right-hand side of Arnoldshöhe. Turn right and follow the trail leading easily and only moderately steeply over the wide grass-and-scree slope with an ever-increasing view to the west right up to the summit, which is marked with two cairns.
The mileage of this is only little over a kilometer, and can be done in 45 minutes.
If you start from the Hannover hut, follow the short, steep and slightly exposed trail down to the col between the hut and Grauleitenspitze, and proceed as above (with children, it might be better to first descend to the cable-car station and rise from there to the Grauleitenspitze).
The summit of Grauleitenspitze, facing west
Good mountain shoes, wind and rain protection. Especially wind protection, as oftentimes the wind is quite strong on the wide and open western slope.
Hannover hut, 2729m. Open from beginning of July until end of September, according to the operational period of the Ankogelbahnen cable-car. Hut warden: Christa Siekiera, Mölltalstrasse 8d, A-9813 Möllbrücke. Telephone: hut number: +43 664 1619367; valley number: +43 4769 3211.
35 bunks or beds in smaller rooms
35 dormitory places
6 emergency accommodations
winter room: open
The Arnoldshöhe (2729m) opposite the Grauleitenspitze. On it's top stands the Hannover hut.
Freytag & berndt Wanderkarte 191, 1:50000 Gasteiner Tal/Wagrain/Grossarltal;
Alpenvereinskarte Blatt 44;
Bundesamt für Eich- und Vermessungswesen (Austria) Blatt 155
External linksAustrian railways timetable
German railways timetable
Austrian post-buses timetable
(enter “Mallnitz-Obervellach Bahnhof” in the “From:” field, and “Mallnitz Ankogelbahn Talstation” in the “To:” field)
Online weather report for the area
None that I know of.