The month of September was packed with hiking trips for me. Last weekend, I met some of my fellow hikers from our group tour across the Alps. It was nice to catch up and we also did two short hikes in the Stuttgart area.
On Saturday, we met at a hotel in Filderstadt and then headed towards Untertürkheim, where we started our first hike. We hiked through the beautiful vineyards above Stuttgart and were able to enjoy stunning views of the city beneath us. At some point, we passed Uhlbach, which is were the local wine museum is located. We enjoyed a late lunch and some local wine at a nearby restaurant and then continued the hike towards Rotenberg. After a quick look at the mausoleum there and another beautiful view of Stuttgart beneath us, we had a nice Swabian dinner at a local restaurant. All in all, it was an easy hike on tarmac roads throughout with 10 km in total distance and about 300 meters of difference in altitude.
On Sunday, we started relatively early for our second hike of the weekend. This time, we headed to Bad Urach, where we would hike a tour just elected “Germany’s Most Beautiful Hiking Path”: the Bad Uracher Wasserfallsteig. From the hikers’ parking lot, we walked past a small creek and soon arrived at the waterfall of Bad Urach – which was surprisingly small as there had been little precipitation recently. On the way further up the hill, we spotted a myriad of fire salamanders. They are supposed to be quite rate and this was the first time I ever saw one in the wild. In the end, we stopped counting at forty.
After our ascent, we enjoyed a beautiful view over the surrounding hills with the clouds hidden low in the valleys beneath us. However, the rain turned from drizzle to downpour shortly after and the views were soon hidden in clouds and fog. As we hiked on, we passed a stud where horses are bred and where the foals and young horses are then being trained for competition. I was stunned with the energy these animals were radiating, chasing each other and galloping across the paddock.
The descent was partly slippery, but beautiful as it wound through the forest. By the time we arrived back at our starting point, the sun had come back out and was glinting through the canopy. The final kilometers led us through a gorgeous valley with orchards and little huts with sunflowers and grape-vines growing around them. This trail of 10 km and 500 m of difference in altitude has definitely earned its title of “Germany’s Most Beautiful Hiking Path” and I can highly recommend it!