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Routes : Europe : Germany

Germany

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About Germany:

Call for help: As you might have noticed I'm currently trying very hard to bring some kind of reasonable input into the German section. Since I know little to nothing of many of the areas, I need your help! If you know an area and want to contribute something about it, be it general descriptions or an idea how to sort it, please pm me with your ideas! I'll answer as quick as I can. Promised.
For minor points or overall critique post into this thread. Thanks!
- Daniel [tisar]

Hilfe benötigt: Wie ihr vielleicht bemerkt habt, versuche ich gerade irgendwie vernünftigen Inhalt in die deutsche Sektion der Datenbank zu bekommen. Da ich über viele Gebiete nicht viel oder gar nichts weiß, bin ich auf eure Hilfe angewiesen. Wenn Du ein Gebiet besser kennst und was dazu schreiben kannst (seien es Gebietsinfos oder auch nur eine Idee, wie man das Gebiet sinnvoll strukturieren kann), dann schreib mir ne pm. (Kann ruhig alles auf Deutsch sein, übersetzen kann ich es immer noch.) Ich kümmere mich dann so schnell es geht darum. Versprochen!
Kleinere Verbesserungen und Vorschläge könnt ihr auch in diesen thread posten. Danke!
- Daniel [tisar]

Map: David Liuzzo, some rights reserved

OVERVIEW

Germany (Wikipedia) is a Federal Republic separated into 16 states (Bundesländer), three of which (Berlin, Hamburg and Bremen) are city-states.

Emergency Numbers Police 110, Emergency 112

Traveling and Transportation Germany has lots of airports, so every region should be more or less reachable by plane. Traveling beyond that can be a little tricky. The railway system is modern and extended but really expensive; a cheap alternative to travel between the bigger cities can be (private) busses.
The cheapest way to get around is a shared ride, a so called 'Mitfahrgelegenheit'. Hitchhiking is not forbidden (except on the Autobahn, always switch hikes on a gas station or such) but lost popularity since the internet provides the ground for the drivers to find people who are willing to share the gas bill.

Accommodation/Camping [more to come]

Shopping Bring your gear and wardrobe. Both are incredibly expensive in Germany. Sorry. For presents and souveniers check local stuff. Though Germany is highly industrialized there's still a lot of craftsmanship to find. Keep your eyes open and ask the locals.

Food Unfortunately eating out in Germany is pretty expensive, except maybe in the eastern states, namely Berlin. While you will find a wide spectrum of international food everywhere, it's sometimes hard to get the original 'German kitchen'. It consists of some classics (Wiener Schnitzel, Braten, Eisbein, Kassler, etc.) and an incredible variety of local specialities - all rather heavy and spicy than haute cuisine. Nonetheless it's very tasty and you really should try it. For more on food take a look at the state descriptions.

Alcohol & Drugs Drinking in public is generally not prohibited and beer is widely not considered alcoholic anyway. Local laws may differ, but enforcement is limited to drastic cases. Of course that doesn't mean it's accepted to get completely wasted in public, but in the end it's your own dignity anyway. Driving drunk (BAL 0.5 being the limit of tolerance) will be punished drastically.
Smoking in public, namely in bars and restaurants is still widely allowed, though the government tries to enforce a non-smoking policy. This might change by time, but until then you gotta accept that Germans smoke almost always and everywhere.
Generally Germany's law enforcement on drugs is rather loose. While possession of most chemical and natural drugs is forbidden, punishment beyond confiscation is seldom and limited to possession of great amounts. The 'marginal amount' (not actionable) differs from State to State though. A 'marginal amount' of marihuana for example varies from less than about a gram (Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg) to less than 30grams in Hamburg and Berlin. In some bars you might witness scenes like in an Amsterdam coffee shop. Remember that this is an exception, not the rule. And any barkeeper will boot you immediately if you're fiddling around with powder, pills or paper.

CLIMBING

For climbing area purposes, the country has been divided into the 16 states. The northern part of Germany is rather flat, while the southern part (Bavaria) abuts the Alps. Therefore the majority of climbing is seated in the southern half of the country - though there are a lot of interesting spots in the other states too.

Because half of Germany is flat country and due to an increase of popularity in climbing, there are many climbing gyms in Germany, called 'Kletterhalle'. For the same reason in the bigger cities you might find a good assortment of artificial outdoor climbing or 'rededicated' buildings.

Season and Climate (Weather has been a little capricious lately, so this is to taken with a grain of salt!) Main climbing season would be between late April and early October. The German winter tends to be cold and rainy, though you might be lucky and be able to find a sunny spot where climbing is possible in the winter months. Juli can be very rainy, August pretty hot.
A small guide to Celsius: 0°C is freezing point, 10°C the start of (uncomfortable) climbing, 20°C is what you switch the heater to, 25°C is a nice summers day, 30°C and more cries for AC.

Major areas Besides the Alps the most popular climbing areas in Germany are:

  • the Frankenjura/Fränkische Schweiz (Bavaria)
  • the Saxon Elbsandstein/Sächsische Schweiz (Saxony)
  • the Pfalz (Rheinland-Pfalz)

also quite popular:
  • the Schwäbische Alp with the Donautal/Danube Valley (Baden-Württemberg)
  • the Ith (Niedersachsen)
  • the Harz (Niedersachsen)

Restrictions: Though generally covered by the right of way, climbing on rock can be severely restricted by different laws. It is recommended that all climbers inquire about access issues before attempting to climb. In some of the German areas there are strict rules about the use of chalk, protection and other ethical issues. Please ask the locals! This will save you from getting busted - or thoroughly beaten up with knot slings…

Ratings: Most of Germany uses the UIAA system for route ratings. Exception would be Saxony and some of the East German areas, which use the Saxon rating system. When adding a route, please include the original rating in brackets behind the route name like this: RouteIclimbed (6+). Roman numbers (like VIIa) mark Saxon Ratings, UIAA and french ratings are displayed in Arabic ciphers.

What's on the web (Non-Climbing)

  • Wikitravel, a good resource of global information for travellers. (English)

What's on the web (Climbing)

  • DAV Felsinfo, a huge database on climbing areas in Germany. Easy to navigate and still growing. The rc.com route db will follow most of the system given here. Unfortunatly it's German only.

Forum Discussions (4 posts)

  Subject Author Replies Last Post
No Replies Rock Climbing in Berlin diegopues 0 Jun 20 2011, 6:26 PM
No Replies Climbing partner - June 2, 2011 dagibbs 0 May 18 2011, 3:34 PM
With Replies Germany climbing partner/community austincooner 1 Jul 30 2010, 1:46 PM
With Replies Sommer Klettern braxtron 1 Jun 22 2010, 8:29 AM