Hochplatte (2082 meters) is a mountain in the Ammergau Alps in Bavaria, Germany.
It’s a strenuous 3 hour ascent (1000 meters elevation gain) to the summit of Hochplatte, followed by an electrifying ridge climb (no equipment needed). This ridge trail makes all the effort worthwhile.
The Hochplatte hike is suitable for experienced hikers with stamina and a head for heights. The ridge trail is secured in places, but nonetheless airy.
This lollipop-circuit trail isn’t widely known, which makes it a great option for weekends and during the high summer season (July and August). The trailhead is a 20-minute drive from Oberammergau, a 40-minute drive from Garmisch-Partenkirchen, and a 10-minute drive from Plansee.
Hochplatte Peak Hike in the Ammergau Alps, Bavaria
- Trailhead: Ammerwaldalm, Austria | Google Maps
- Distance: 10.6 km lollipop-circuit
- Time Needed: 5:30 hours
- Difficulty: Difficult
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 969 meters
- Minimum Elevation: 1103 meters
- Maximum Elevation: 2082 meters
- Where to Stay in Oberammergau: Hotel Maximilian (midrange)
- Where to Stay in Ettal: Hotel Blaue Gams ***S (midrange), or Klosterhotel Ettal Ludwig der Bayer (luxury)
- Where to Stay in Garmisch-Partenkirchen: Olympiahaus (budget), Quartier – Lodges Biohotel (midrange-luxury), or Werdenfelserei (luxury)
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Hochplatte Hiking Map
Where to Start the Hochplatte Hike
The Hochplatte summit lies in Bavaria, however, the trailhead is located in Austria, very close to the border.
The Ammerwaldalm is an alpine pasture hut located along the Ammerwald – Plansee country road, which connects Ettal in Bavaria with Plansee in Tirol, Austria.
You can park directly at the trailhead at Ammerwaldalm or at the Grenzhaus (Border House), at the Germany-Austria border. Note: the parking directly in front of Ammerwaldalm is reserved for guests only.
It’s possible to stay overnight in Ammerwaldalm: check rates here.
Location | Ammerwaldalm 1, 6600 Gemeinde Reutte, Austria | Google Maps
Ammerwaldalm to Hochplatte Trail Description
Ammerwaldalm to Weitalpjoch (2 hours)
Hochplatte hike begins at the parking lot at Ammerwaldalm.
Locate the forest road (“Forststrasse”), just left of the Ammerwaldalm alpine pasture hut.
Follow the forest road and signs to Weitalpjoch (signed 3 hours) and Hochplatte (signed 4:15 hours). Note: these hiking time estimates are far too long. It only takes 2 hours to reach Weitalpjoch saddle and 3 hours to Hochplatte summit.
After about 5 minutes, turn right, again following signs to Weitalpjoch and Hochplatte.
Shortly thereafter, the trail to Hochplatte veers left, following the Roggentalbach stream.
The path ascends along the right bank of the Roggentalbach stream through a lush spruce forest.
For the next hour, you’ll continue ascending the Roggental valley, crossing the stream several times.
After ascending about 1:10 hrs, you’ll reach a signed junction, which marks the start of the circuit. Turn right in the direction of Weitalpjoch (signed 1 hour) and Hochplatte (signed 2 hours).
The trail crosses a meadow and then steeply zigzags uphill to the rock wall. Continue east along the foot of the rock wall. After crossing a dry stream bed, follow a narrow, rocky path along the right bank.
Pay attention to the red-painted waymarks. It looks like the old trail was washed out. The new trail crosses the stream bed again and ascends steeply. The terrain is crumbling and rocky – be extra careful.
Eventually, the path eases and you’ll crest at the Weitalpjoch saddle (1775 m).
Weitalpjoch to Hochplatte (1:15 hours)
The trail to Hochplatte continues left, soon entering thick dwarf pine. As you gain elevation, the path is increasingly dominated by karst rock.
When you reach the ridge, head left to Hochplatte. Views open up to the north and Lake Forggensee.
The path steepens significantly.
The eastern ridge to Hochplatte narrows. The most exposed passage is secured.
From here, it’s a 10 minute ascent to the east peak (Ostgipfel) of Hochplatte, marked by a cross (Gipfelkreuz).
Hochplatte to Fensterl (45 minutes)
The trail continues west along the ridge towards Krähe mountain.
Sections of the trail are secured with fixed cables.
The ridge path ends at the Fensterl, which are two natural windows.
Fensterl – Roggentalgabel – Ammerwaldalm (1:30 – 2 hours)
Make a sharp left in the direction of Roggentalgabell/Roggentalsattel, and Ammerwald (2:15 hours).
The path crosses the grassy slopes of Hochplatte to the Roggentalsattel saddle in 5 minutes.
Follow the serpentines down to Roggental valley.
The trail drops below the tree line and steers you to the familiar Hochplatte/Roggental trail junction, thus completing the circuit.
Follow the familiar path down the Roggental valley to Ammerwaldalm.
Where to Stay near Hochplatte
Midrange | Hotel Maximilian is located in the fabled setting of Oberammergau, one of the most charming towns in Upper Bavaria. Stay here for the town center location, the comfortable rooms, the spa area, and the on-site restaurant and brewery: Ammergauer Maxbräu (closed on Mondays and Tuesdays). During your stay in Oberammergau, visit the nearby Linderhof Palace and the Ettal Abbey.
Midrange | Hotel Blaue Gams ***S is a 3-star-superior hotel in Ettal Valley with stunning views of the Ettal Monastery and surrounding countryside. This lovely hotel features cozy alpine interiors, a spa, an excellent breakfast, and a very nice on-site restaurant.
Luxury | Klosterhotel Ettal Ludwig der Bayer is a traditional Bavarian 4-star hotel located across from the Ettal Monastery. Guests love the spacious rooms, the breakfast, the spa, and the on-site restaurant.
Garmisch-Partenkirchen is an alpine resort town in Upper Bavaria, close to the border of Austria. It’s a well-known destination for skiing in winter (late December to late March) and hiking and mountain biking in summer (June – mid/late September). During your stay, dine at Zum Wildschütz in Garmisch, explore the natural wonder of Partnach Gorge and Lake Eibsee, hike through Höllental Gorge, and climb up the Alpspitz Via Ferrata.
Budget | Olympiahaus is a traditional Bavarian guesthouse located at the historical Olympic stadium (where the ski jump is) and at the Partnach Gorge trailhead. The Olympiahaus features an on-site restaurant, breakfast buffet (optional), and free on-site parking.
Midrange-Luxury | Quartier – Lodges Biohotel is a modern hotel with nature-inspired minimalist interiors. Suites feature untreated stone pine paneling, natural bed linen, and metal-free beds. Breakfast is included. The hotel restaurant serves contemporary regional specialities, Tuesday to Saturday, 2 pm – 9:30 pm.
Luxury | Werdenfelserei is a standout boutique hotel which artfully combines traditional and modern alpine design. Highlights of staying here include the Zugspitze-facing rooftop pool, on-site restaurant, spa and wellness area, breakfast (included), and creative architecture.
More options: Hotel Schatten (budget), Central Garden-Mountain Apartment (midrange), aja Garmisch-Partenkirchen (midrange-luxury), Obermühle 4*S Boutique Resort (luxury), Private Spa & Garden Alpi (luxury).
Look for accommodation in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
Bavarian Alps Travel Essentials
Bavarian Alps Road Trip
The best place to start a Bavarian Alps road trip is in Munich, where there’s an international airport. Here’s our recommended Bavarian Alps & Austrian Alps itinerary.
We recommend using the Discovercars.com car rental reservation platform to search for and book car rentals in Germany. This easy-to-use booking platform compares car rental deals from 500+ trusted providers, so that you can choose the best option for your trip.
Tip: If you can only drive automatic transmission cars, as opposed to manual transmission cars (stick shift), book your car rental as early as possible.
Guided Adventures in Bavaria
- Day Trip from Munich: Full Day Tour to Germany’s Highest Peak: Zugspitze
- Day Trip From Munich: Zugspitze Tour: Groups of 4 or More
- Day Trip From Munich: Neuschwanstein Castle Full-Day Trip
- Guided Via Ferrata Hike in Garmisch:Alpspitze via ferrata guided tour (mid June – late September)
Self-Guided Multi-Day Adventures in Bavaria
- 8-Day Cycling Tour: Munich to Venice on a Touring Bike – Active
- 13-Day Cycling Tour: Munich to Venice on a Touring Bike – Relaxed
- 11-Day Cycling Tour: Breweries of Bavaria Bicycle Tour
- 8-Day Cycling Tour: Across the Alps on a Touring Bicycle: Garmisch to Lake Garda
- Travel Guide: Lonely Planet Munich, Bavaria & the Black Forest
- Hiking Guide: Walking in the Bavarian Alps: 70 Mountain Walks and Treks in Southern Germany
- Hiking Map: Werdenfelser Land, Staffelsee – Kochelsee – Walchensee – Zugspitze 1:50 000
- Hiking Map: Hiking Map Freytag & Berndt WDK 4: Garmisch Partenkirchen
- Camera Body: Sony Alpha a6400
- Mid-range Zoom Lens: Tamron 17-70mm 2.8 Di III-A VC RXD
- Wide angle Zoom Lens: Sony – E 10-18mm F4 OSS Wide-angle Zoom Lens
- Backpack Camera Clip: Peak Design Camera Clip
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Germany Travel Guides:
- Germany Travel Guide
- Black Forest Travel Guide
- Upper Middle Rhine Valley Travel Guide
- Moselle Valley Travel Guide
- Ahr Valley Travel Guide
- Eifel Region Travel Guide
- Cologne City Guide
European Alps Hiking & Travel Guides:
- Best Day Hikes in Austria
- Ehrwald, Austria: Lake Drachensee Hike
- Ötztal, Austria: Aqua Dome Thermal Baths