I am planning a trip for my family to Europe during July. I would like all of us to experience a majestic via "1 day" ferrata hiking experience. My kids are 13 and 14. My wife and I are in our 40's. We are all athletic. Ideally the hike would be near Cortina, Garmish or Berchtesgaden. Can anyone recommend an english speaking guide? Is a guide necessary for "klettersteig alpspitz" via ferrata? ...or could we just rent the gear? I appreciate any suggestions.
If it is like most hiking areas there will be hiking maps available at the Tourist Information Office. If not ask at your hotel or where you rent gear where you can find more info about your plans to hike.
For the Alpspitz, you wouldn't need a guide. You would want the gear---harness and carabiner, and helmets. I imagine the sports shops in town would rent it---you could check with the TI.
My son did part of the straight-up Klettersteig a few years ago, after we took the Nordwandsteig across the face of the Alpspitz and back---this is a good way to return from the peak, making a loop. He really enjoyed the short section he did, and would have chosen to do the whole ascent to the peak that way if we'd had time.
The Nordwandsteig across the face has a few sections with cables and ladders as well, but you need nothing more than hiking boots for that one.
Brian: Out of curiosity I googled "klettersteig alpspitz" and this is what I gethttp://www.klettersteig.com/kAlpspitz/But you used the words "hiking" and "hike" in your original post. Is this what you had in mind, when you said hike?
Kent---I assume that since he used the right words (via feerrata, Klettersteig) and spoke of the right areas he knows what they are getting into.
Tha Alpspitz Klettersteig is not as extreme as it appears in the photo. It is a series of ladders and ledges, always with a cable to which you can secure your harness. You ascend one ladder to a ledge, rest and gather your senses, and do it again. . . and again. . . .until you reach the summit.
The German says: leichter bis mittel schwieriger Klettersteig Schwierigkeit: (B), Bei entsprechender Sicherung auch für Kinder geeignet.
Der Abstieg ist alpin, Trittsicherheit ist erforderlich.
Gehzeit 1 bis 3 Stunden für den Steig, Abstieg 1 bis 2 Stunden.
Klettersteigausrüstung, am besten Helm, Klettergurt mit Klettersteigkarabinern, ev. Handschuhe, erforderlich.
Rough translation: it is "easy" to "medium difficult" in grade; even OK for children with recommended equipment. It is an alpine climb and you need to be "surefooted". Recommended equipment is helmet, harness with carabiner, and gloves. The climb takes 1 to 3 hours.
If you are in the area, and this climb doesn't appeal, I highly recommend the other path---the Nordwandsteig, which crosses the face of the Alpspitz on a secure ledge. It is wide enough (3 feet or so) that one feels safe and secure, and there is a cable to hold onto if you are nervous. There is one ladder at the far end, but I didn't find it scary at all.
The views are spectacular, and it is a lot of fun.