Known as the Tuscany of the Sauerland, the Medebacher Bucht is a sun-kissed region in the heart of Germany. You can explore its beauty first hand on the Medebacher Bergweg (Medebach Mountain Trail. As the area is difficult to farm, it avoided land consolidation. This means you can enjoy pristine nature as you hike through pastures and mountain heath, lined with gorse bushes and hedgerows. Today, the region is a European bird sanctuary that is home to rare animal and plant species.
Further to the north-east lie the foothills of the Rothaar Mountains and the Waldecker Upland with their impressive forest and heathland landscapes. Here, you leave the wide valley basin of the Medebach Bay and climb up into the magnificent low mountains, enjoying wonderful views. Time and time again, you walk through small, lovingly restored villages with half-timbered houses and gardens that overflow with blossom.
The certified quality hiking trail leads you from the town of Medebach in a wide arc around Medebach Bay to the foothills of the Rothaar Mountains and the ‘kahlen Pön’ peak (776 m/2,545 ft) in the north and back to Medebach. Across the four stages of this 68-kilometre (42 mile) circular you climb almost 1,500 metres (4,925 feet). The stages are divided so that you can find a selection of cosy overnight accommodation at the respective destination (information in German: medebach-touristik.de/de).
You also find restaurants in all the towns en route. However, it is advisable to take water and a picnic with you, as the inn could be closed when you pass by.
The starting point, Medebach doesn’t have a train station, but it is easy to reach by bus. You can also reach other points en route by bus if you want to plan day hikes or only walk individual stages. Bus timetables in North Rhine-Westphalia can be found at rlg-online.de, and connections from Hesse can be found at nvv.de.
The Medebach Mountain Trail is surprising and beautiful – perfect for a relaxed, long weekend hiking.
The first day's stage on the Medebacher Bergweg leads you from Medebach to Medelon. You walk in a large arc on the mountain slope of the Wachtkopf and through the valley of the Brhne to its confluence with the Orke. You always have a wide view of the wonderful Medebacher Bay. Through the small village of Berge you go to the Lückenkopf, the highest point for today, and then back north to your today's destination.
The starting point is the impressive St. Peter and Paul Church in Medebach, one of the largest parish churches in the Sauerland. Since the tour is not too long today at just under 17 kilometers, you can take a good look at the interior of the church with the altars, the organ and the baptismal font before starting. Then you leave the city towards the northeast to turn southeast on the slope of the Weddel. Very soon you will reach the valley of the broth and follow it up to its confluence with the Orke. On the left the Wachtkopf rises with its wooded slopes and to the right you can see Medebach and the Medebacher Bay.
Very soon you will reach the small town of Berge with the baroque St. John's Chapel. An ideal place for a break and, if you like, to visit the chapel. It is generally open and houses twelve images of the apostles, which come from the former Glindfeld monastery.
Freshly strengthened, you continue to hike uphill to the Lückenkopf. This is the highest point for today and the view of the vast country is great. After a short breather, it goes downhill again and in a large arc to the north. From a distance you can already see the Church of St. Engelbert in Medelon, your stage destination for today.
The second day's stage starts in Medelon, a lovingly prepared district of Medebach. The path is almost 15 kilometers long and first leads you a long route through the beautiful valley of the Orke. Later you turn north and follow the paths to Rösberg. It is a bit of a challenge with its steep ascent, but the view it offers at around 770 meters is simply overwhelming. Today's destination, Küstelberg, is not far away and you can reach it via gently sloping paths.
You start today in Medelon an der Orke, a small picturesque place that was mentioned in a document as early as 1280. Since today's tour is only about 15 kilometers long, you might take the time to see the neo-Gothic quarry stone church from 1910 or the oldest house called Niggemes from 1774. It is worth it ..
Then it starts and you follow the orcs for about six kilometers. The enchanting Orketal with its floodplains is a nature reserve and breeding ground for kingfishers and mountain wagtails. That was not always the case, because the Orke was only made more natural again through a number of measures with the European LIFE project. One goal was the continuity of the water in order to offer a habitat for brown trout, brown lamprey and bullheads. And black storks should breed here again.
Behind the Deutmecke, a small trickle that flows into the Orke, you turn off and start the ascent to the Rösberg. You are now hiking a beautiful mountain path that only gets really steep in the last few meters. Above you can expect a fantastic view and a few benches on which you can take a break and let your thoughts wander. The remaining three kilometers to the mountain village Küstelberg, your destination today, go slightly downhill and you can always enjoy the beautiful views.
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The third day's stage starts in Küstelberg and follows the Dittelsbach via Deifeld to Referinghausen. There you turn into the valley of the wild Aa and shortly afterwards you will reach Titmaringhausen. The ascent to the high Pön and on to the bald Pön begins right at the exit of the village. A great heath landscape awaits you here with fantastic views of the surrounding area. On a clear day you can even see as far as Kassel. Through spruce and beech forests, you then continue on shady paths to Düdinghausen with its large church, which you can see from afar. You will have hiked a good 20 kilometers today and conquered quite a few meters in altitude.
When you start in Küstelberg, you can once again admire the location on the eastern ridge of the Rothaargebirge. To the west you have a wide view over the country and to the east you can see the Schlossberg with the three ski lifts. You leave the place in the northeast and follow the Dittelsbach on beautiful paths to Deifeld and on to Referinghausen. Right at the entrance of Referinghausen you will notice a display with the milking times of the place. It belongs to Referinghausen's eight milk stations, with which the village provides information about the regional characteristics and the interrelationship between milk production, nature and landscape.
In Referinghausen the Dittelsbach flows into the wild Aa. You now follow this small stream to Titmaringhausen, the next of the beautiful Medebach districts. It is picturesquely located in a deep valley and as soon as you have crossed it, it goes steeply uphill towards Auf'm Knoll. You are now mainly in the forest and you can recover from the ascent in relative solitude at the Knoll refuge with a beautiful view of the Medebacher Land. Just a few kilometers further you will find one of the few huts with a restaurant: the Graf Stolberg Hut sits on a ridge at the foot of the bald Pön with a magnificent view. It is very popular and there are occasional waiting times.
You now follow the path further uphill and you will soon reach the bald Pön with its unique heathland. Take the time to enjoy the overwhelming view. In front of you in the valley lies Usseln with its gray slate roofs and the Kilian's Church. Further west you can see the Adorfer Land and on very clear days you can even see Kassel. But the heather itself is also beautiful. Maybe even the blueberries are ripe or the heather is in full bloom.
On the southern slope of the Pön you follow the easy paths to Kalied and then downhill to Düdinghausen. You always have beautiful views of the surrounding landscape.
The large neo-Gothic church of Düdinghausen can be seen from afar. The beautiful village is your stage destination today.
Your fourth and final stage begins in Düdinghausen. It is about 16 kilometers long and first leads you in a large arc through agricultural area to Oberschledorn and then over a small wooded mountain range into the very beautiful valley of the Harbecke at the gates of Medebach.
Düdinghausen is a lovingly prepared mountain village with a historic village center and the listed neo-Gothic church. The interesting history of the village is told through around 25 house boards that will bring you closer to the special features of this place.
The place also has a lot to offer geologically and on your way today you will pass one of four quarries: The Borghagen quarry on the edge of the village provides an exciting insight into the geological development of this region.
Soon the path will lead you through an agricultural area and after a good seven kilometers you will reach Oberschledorn, the largest district of Medebach. It is a very inviting place - around 800 people live here - with a beautiful town center, an art cafe and the Church of St. Antonius. It has been a brightly colored church since 2017, in which visitors can operate a music and lighting system themselves and so bathe the building in colorful light.
You leave Oberschledorn in a southerly direction and now hike on easy paths over a small wooded mountain range and can always enjoy the wonderful view. Finally you reach the graceful valley of the Harbecke with its charming cultural landscape. It's not far to Medebach, the destination of this stage. In the old Hanseatic city you will find enough places to stop for refreshments to end your hike in peace.