Trubachtal (Trubach valley)

Page Type
Germany, Europe
Trad Climbing, Sport Climbing
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
1640 ft / 500 m
6065 Hits
79.78% Score
Log in
to vote
Page By:
Trubachtal (Trubach valley)
Created On: Jan 21, 2008
Last Edited On: Oct 10, 2010


Trubachtal lies in the heart of the so called Franconian Switzerland ("Fränkische Schweiz"), which itself is the heart of the jurassic low mountain range Frankenjura. Geographically it can be ranked as the 2nd most important valley of Fränkische Schweiz, with neighboring Wiesent valley being the 1st (in fact, Trubach valley is a side valley of the lower Wiesent valley). But regarding sport climbing both can be considered equal.
All routes are reliably bolted mostly with the endemic standard cemented bolts ("Bühler piton") or rings. Everywhere in the region described here the rock consists of mostly solid dolomite, which tends, however, to be polished in the famous and frequented routes. Also, in the more difficult routes the 1st bolt may be reached only after quite a number of straggling meters.

The Trubach valley stretches from the source of Trubach river (Bach being effectively the German word for small river) in the village Obertrubach ("Upper Trubach") over approx. 15 km to the village Pretzfeld, where it reaches the Wiesent river.

In the following the German word "Tal" will be used instead of valley, and likewise "Fränkische Schweiz" will be used.

A personal remark: I started climbing in May 1970 at Zehnerstein, one of the rocks described here, and for the following decade the area this page deals with was my prime playground. Therefore the characterization given here is focused on my experiences of that time and less on the following sport climbing era with ever increasing difficulties. And I still would underline the words of Rudl Buchner, one of the local climbing heroes of that time, who once stated about the following: "Whenever I come back home from the mountains of the world, I'm glad to go again to my Fränkische, its rich variety of rocks and routes and its lovely views".

Getting There

The Fränkische Schweiz is close to the metropolitan area of Nuremberg in Bavaria, Southern Germany. The Trubachtal can be reached from Forchheim, a middle town halfway between Nuremberg and Bamberg (north of Nuremberg). From Forchheim one drives up Wiesenttal in direction of the small town of Ebermannstadt, and leaves Wiesenttal approx. 5 km before the latter to the right (southeast) and enters Trubachtal at a village called Pretzfeld.
You can follow this and all of the locations cited here easily on the Google map if you click on the coordinates given above and choose the proper scale.

About midway in the valley lies its "metropole", the roughly 3000-soul-city of very scenic Egloffstein.
EgloffsteinEgloffstein from south
Frankenjura topo outline Etopo outline from 1979 Bühler guide
Jura AltiplanoJura Altiplano
Lower TrubachtalLower Trubach valley

Red Tape

There are no Red Tape regulations as far as accessibility is concerned. However, Fränkische Schweiz is nevertheless qualified as Natural Park and therefore subject to certain restrictions. In particular, there are climbing regulations on the basis of a 3-level zoning concept.

These zones, defined in extensive negotiations with local officials during the 90ies and absolutely to be respected, are:
Zone 1: No climbing
Zone 2: Climbing exclusively on existing routes (new routes possible with explicit official permission)
Zone 3: Climbing and new routes in vegetation-free rock allowed
Each rock has been attributed to one of these zones. For some rocks, the classification depends on season, due to breeding birds.

External Links

Tourist info about Trubachtal (in German)
About the climbing concept in Trubachtal (in German), containing a nice map of the valley with the climbing sites.
Tourist info about Walberla (in German)
Info about nature protection and the zoning concept, concerning individual rocks (in German)


In the whole of Fränkische Schweiz camping is only allowed at certified camping grounds. In Trubachtal this is preferredly "Oma Eichler" at the upriver fringe of the little village Untertrubach, vis-a-vis the remarkable rock tower of Zehnerstein.


Zehnerstein N-faceZehnerstein N dihedral
The following listing of the most important climbing rocks downriver along Trubachtal is subject to my personal remark above. As a summary, the number of routes is given according to the difficulty range as (≤IV / V or VI / >VI) wrt UIAA (those not familiar with the UIAA scale may look up the well-made conversion table by Corax). In the second category one finds a neat number of remarkable and long classical routes really worthwhile, of which I cite the most outstanding ones.
  • Richard-Wagner-Fels (R.-Wagner rock) (1/9/8)
    Westverschneidung V+, Westhangel VI+
  • Hartelstein (2/10/10)
    Südpfeiler VI+
  • Zehnerstein (3/15/9)
    Ostverschneidung V-, Seifertriss VI+
  • Haselstaudener Wände (4/9/6)
  • Egloffsteiner Gemsenwand (0/14/5)
    Westverschneidung V-, Alter Gemsenweg VI-, M. Bauer Ged.-Weg V+
  • Egloffsteiner Felsentor (2/5/0)
    Direkte Talwand VI/a1
  • Schlehenmühler Wand (2/3/11)
    Lasall Ged.-Weg VI
  • Erlanger Felsentor (1/3/7)
3 Zinnen3 Zinnen
On top of ZehnersteinPittoresque view from top of Zehnerstein
Röthelfels, aerial viewRöthelfels, aerial view
Röthelfels, Altes GeiereckRöthelfels, Old vulture's corner

Röthelfels, AstronautenleiterRöthelfels, Astronauts ladder
There are several small side valleys of Trubachtal with more or less interesting rocks of their own, of which I will mention here:
  • 3 Zinnen (in lovely Großenoher Tal) (3/3/0)
  • Brüchige Wand (Todsfelder Tal near Egloffstein) (4/4/0)
    Direkte Südwand VI-
  • Mostvieler Kletterblock (in Mostviel side valley) (1/4/2)
    Südostkante V
  • Röthelfels (side valley at Wannbach) (8/61/44)
    Altes Geiereck V, R3 V+, R6 V+, Schlesinger Weg VI, Treusteiner VI, R2 V-
Röthelfels, R2Röthelfels, R2

Röthelfels, Welzenbach GedächtniswegRöthelfels, Welzenbach memory route


Walberla, aerial view from NWWalberla aerial view from NW

WalberlaWalberla seen from NW

Walberla from SSWWalberla seen from SSW

Frankenjura topo outline Ftopo outline from 1979 Bühler guide

Walberla plateauWalberla plateau

Climbing VIPsHistory writers of Fränkische Schweiz, beneath Frankenschnellweg

Not strictly belonging to Trubachtal because located some 6 km off in western direction, but incorporated here because isolated and not attributable to some other region is the remarkable double summit mountain Ehrenbürg, which is geologically a mesa or butte, marking the western limit of Fränkische Schweiz and rising about 200m above lower Wiesent valley.

Actually the 2 summits - separated by a shallow depression of about 50m below both summits - have each a name of their own. The southern summit is called Rodenstein and is with 512m the higher one, while the northern summit (498m), which has a small chapel named after Holy Walburgis, is logically called Walberla in the local dialect, a name which is normally used by locals also for the whole mountain (it may be noted as a funny aside that locals also distort this name sensibly to Weibala, the - obvious - interpretation of that spoof being left to the cunning reader). The correct geographical name Ehrenbürg is really used by strangers only ...

Walberla is reached most easily from 2 parking places halfway up the mountain, one in the west above Schlaifhausen and one in the north above Kirchehrenbach (cf. adjoining topo outline). The summit plateau itself is off limits for any vehicles.

Both summits have each an excellent climbing wall with lots of routes. Alas, the wall on the northern summit, called Geierswand (Vulture's wall) with its collection of outstanding climbs (7/15/5) in exceptional dolomite up to 30m long has been closed for climbing in the late 80ies and bolts have been removed, for alleged natural protection reasons. But also the west face of the south summit offers a great variety (11/25/7) of beautiful climbs, among these "Frankenschnellweg", opened in the late 70ies and constituting a history-writing route in that it is one of the very first climbs rated UIAA VII in Fränkische Schweiz - see image.

Beneath Rodenstein is the small village Schlaifhausen. Its inn Gasthaus Kroder has a long history as a refuge for climbers.

This is also the place for a short obituary for Kurt Albert, who died in the evening of Sept. 28, 2010, due to a drop of about 18 m, as reported, in a relatively easy via ferrata in Frankenjura (Höhenglücksteig). Kurt created the above cited route Frankenschnellweg, among countless others in Frankenjura and also world-wide. The topic has been covered quickly in various forum posts on SP, cf. here and here and also on the web site of the German Alpine Club, see here.
I personally remember Kurt most for his welcoming, modest and even-tempered character.

29-09-2010 - RIP.

On Saturday, 09-10-2010, a great Goodbye-festival was organized by Kurt's friends and held at one of Kurt's favorite walls, the "Glatte Wand" near Streitberg in Wiesent valley. See the account here (in German).

Kurt AlbertKurt-Albert-Poster on Glatte Wand