words and photography by Philipp Wortmann
Though the day’s destination promised a remarkably remote vibe, it was just a mere hour drive away. Nonetheless, the day started moderately early. It was one of those clear but cold fall days and we were headed to the lake Spitzingsee, about 35 miles south of Munich—you know, Oktoberfest and stuff—deep in the Bavarian alps. The lake lies at the foot of a triangle of mountain peaks that can all be climbed within a day—the Taubenstein, the Rotwand, the Hochmiesing. Three summits in one day? Count me in.
Ascending from the lake Spitzingsee we reached our first peak of the day, the taubenstein, still in the morning hours. It was freezing so we didn’t pause long, instead opting to pull our beanies down over the ears and make our way back down the sketchy path we came up to continue on the way to the second peak.
After traversing over open landscapes for some time we made a short but steep push up the Rotwand and were rewarded with 360 degree views into the sweeping valleys below, and of seemingly endless mountain lines along the horizon. Even the sun made an appearance, inviting us to take break to dig into our trail mix.
At a bit over 6000 feet in elevation, the Rotwand was the highest peak on our plan for the day. This left the last one—the Hochmiesing—as a nice little highlight our way back down to the parking lot. Passing one mountain cabin—and its guard dog—after another we hiked down the trail and reached our car just in time to have one last look back at the mountains we had hiked before the sun set behind the summits.