Looking up at and down from the Kofel are two very different things

It was quite a different feeling, pretending to do the hike to the top of the Kofel from actually doing it. My wife and I were being filmed for a small spot showcasing my book Beer Hiking Bavaria on Bayrischer Rundfunk Abendschau, a Bavarian TV show. The person filming us wanted to show a few hikes and breweries from the book so obviously doing all the hikes was out of the question. He trusted us to take him to some key spots to film and the Kofel one was easy enough to reach by car before a short walk to its dramatic entrance.

 a walk along the river shows the iconic view of the Kofel & the much steeper entrance view

He was pretty impressed just driving to the parking lot but it’s understandable; the iconic view of the Kofel never disappoints. When we hiked up the short distance to the hike’s start, he set up his camera excitedly, very happy with our choice. I went a bit further over than where he’d positioned himself and told him he should take a look from where I was. He was skeptical but once he’d had a look, hurriedly went to bring his camera. While not as pretty as the more renowned image, the one when walking up towards it is much steeper. He filmed us a bunch of times walking in its direction and we were off to the brewery to film there.

  us walking to peak & me interviewing the brewer at Maxbräu

The interview went well enough despite my minimalistic German and if you watch the video, you’ll see I enjoyed the beer perhaps more than any I’d ever had. Man, was I parched! I’d found out doing an interview in German on TV was much harder than climbing the Kofel. Of course, it would have been a great touch to show us using the cables that are in place to reach the top but it would have meant not only us doing a bunch of switchbacks to reach them but also our cameraman, who didn’t appear up to it. As it turned out, he was so good at editing that the piece he put together segued from scene to scene seamlessly, even though it was out of order of how we’d done the filming.

 the hike up was probably not what our cameraman had in mind

The views from the top are well worth the effort and for Beer Hiking Bavaria, I used a nice connecting trail through the forest to the next valley. Returning down that side, you get an entirely different perspective of the Kofel.

the view from the top, another perspective of the Kofel & the reward beer at Maxbräu

Ammergauer Maxbräu is a great spot to celebrate your climbing the Kofel. The brewery’s logo is the iconic view of the dramatic peak and you can see it from terrace seating while you sip on their thirst quenching Kellerbier.

 just reward at Ammergauer Maxbräu

The Kofel hike starts in Oberammergau which lies in Upper Bavaria (Oberbayern in German). There are 14 hikes in this region in my book Beer Hiking Bavaria along with another 36 from all over Bavaria. Each includes detailed descriptions of the hikes as well as information on the breweries along the routes plus some tasting notes on my favorite beers at each establishment.

It’s available in both English and German:
beer hiking bavaria book coverbierwandern bayern buch


4 thoughts on “Looking up at and down from the Kofel are two very different things

  1. Great photos and I enjoyed the video. The scenery reminded me a bit of the Lauterbrunnen Valley in Swtizerland where we had some great beer at the Horner Pub in the village of Lauterbrunnen. Your book is supposed to arrive at my home on Tuesday. And if the other ones are similar to the Kofel hike, I’m going to enjoy the photos and the narrative. Cheers

    1. Thanks for checking it out, Don. The Bavarian Alps don’t get as much notoriety but they can be very dramatic. There are a lot of different types of hikes in the book. The Kofel is one of the harder ones and the ones in Franconia tend to be more gentle. Interested to see how you like it.

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