Hoher Westerwald

Bicycle Rides

Ulmtal cycle path: GeoRoute on the trail of basalt, clay and ore

Route profile

Difficulty
Easy
Length / Distance 21,9 km
Rise 3 hm
Descent 440 hm
Duration 1,2 h
Highest point 578 hm
Lowest point 138 hm

Notice

In the tour planner we inform you under the tab "Current info" about temporary route changes, closures and detours.

To the Tour Planer

Description

If I wanted to cycle from the Lahn Valley to the Westerwald, I would have to overcome quite a few inclines. What a stroke of luck it is when a former railway line can be used as a cycle path. The former Ulm Valley railway - also known as the "Balkan Express" - was closed in 1976. Today, the railway line has been converted into an attractive cycle path. This allows me to experience and enjoy the low mountain range landscape with few gradients.

The cycle path has been developed as a GeoRoute in the GEOPARK Westerwald-Lahn-Taunus. The Ulm Valley Railway was once built to transport raw materials from the Westerwald to the Lahn Valley. Basalt, clay and iron ore were exported from here. Today, I find many relics of mining history along the route, which I learn exciting stories about at beautifully designed rest areas and viewpoints.

Shortly after starting high up on the mountain called "Knoten", one of the highest mountains in the Westerwald, I reach the Adolf Weiß monument (Hui-Wäller monument). Adolf Weiß was a true Westerwald farmer and local poet. In 1913, he won a competition for a hiker's greeting. This is still popular today: "Hui! Wäller? Allemol!" The route continues to Beilstein, where I can buy some tasty provisions in the apple shop. And in the village, the BASALT-PARKours awaits with lots of information about the raw material basalt and small climbing facilities for children. A wonderful oasis of peace has been created here. A little further on, between Beilstein and Holzhausen, is the Ulmbachtalsperre reservoir with a restaurant and swimming facilities. Above Ulm, I am greeted by the bronze head of the Erwin Piscator monument, which was erected to the famous citizen in 2016. Erwin Friedrich Maximilian Piscator (17 December 1893 – 30 March 1966) was a German theatre director and producer. Piscator's students in New York were Bea Arthur, Harry Belafonte, Marlon Brando, Tony Curtis, Ben Gazzara, Judith Malina, Walter Matthau, Rod Steiger, Elaine Stritch, Eli Wallach, Jack Creley, and Tennessee Williams.

Shortly after Allendorf, I visit the Siegfried Fietz sculpture park. On a walk through the open park, I discover wonderful large sculptures made of wood and stone. Siegfried Fietz (born 25 May 1946) is a German singer-songwriter, composer, music producer and sculptor. He has collaborated with Ivan Rebroff, Clemens Bittlinger, Dieter Falk, Eberhard Weber, Petula Clark, Uwe Kröger, Eva Lind, Bill Ramsey, Edwin Hawkins, Olivia Molina and Coretta Scott King. He developed a Weltraumsinfonie (Space Symphony) with the astronaut James Irwin.

A little later, I am drawn to the Outdoor Centre Lahntal, a location with a covered beer garden in the middle of the forest. The centre also hosts events, offers overnight accommodation, canoe hire and parties of all kinds. In Biskirchen, I reach the Lahn cycle path and can refresh myself at the Gertrudisbrunnen healing spring.

Brief description

The Westerwald is often uphill, but this beautiful cycle path takes me mostly downhill for almost 22 kilometres. It connects the junction with the Lahn valley cycle path in Biskirchen.

Approach

  • From Cologne: Follow A4 and A45 to B255 in Herborn, take exit 26-Herborn-West on A45
  • From Frankfurt: Take the A3 and B49 to Limburger Str. in Merenberg, take the B49 exit towards Merenberg-west/Mengerskirchen/M-Allendorf/Weilburg/Hasselbach, Industriestraße, L3109, L3046, Hauptstraße and L3046 to your destination in Greifenstein
  • From Siegen: Take the A45 motorway to the B255 in Herborn, take exit 26-Herborn-West on the A45, follow the B255 to your destination in Greifenstein
  • From Koblenz: Take the A48, A3 and B49 to Limburger Str. in Merenberg, take the B49 exit towards Merenberg-west/Mengerskirchen/M-Allendorf/Weilburg/Hasselbach, Industriestraße, L3109, L3046, Hauptstraße and L3046 to the destination in Greifenstein
  • From Limburg a. d. Lahn: Take the B49, L3109 and L3046 to Greifenstein

Parking

  • mostly sufficiently available, gravelled pitch
  • free of charge

Directions

The mountain named "Knoten" (586 metres) lies in the middle of the quadrangle between the Krombach dam, Münchhausen, Oberrod and Arborn. The ride begins on the eastern side and leads through a wide forest area eastwards to Odersberg. I ride past Beilstein with a number of zigzags and bends and turn south towards Holzhausen and Ulm. I leave Allendorf and Bissenberg on my left and reach the Lahn valley Cycle Path in Biskirchen, the end of the tour. The route runs along a former railway line. The disused railway line has been dismantled and a wonderful cycle path has been created so that I am always cycling on a firm surface. The route not only offers a number of sights, but also several rest stops. In addition, the whole route tends to be downhill, so that the route is also suitable for older cyclists and children. The highest point is 578 metres shortly after the start, and at the end of the ride I am only 138 metres above sea level.

Safety instructions

Easy bike tour for all fitness levels.

Equipment

The back is not the only place for bags and rucksacks on a bike tour - the weight of the equipment should ideally be distributed over several parts of the body and bike. Wind, rain or sun can lead to very different temperature sensations on the bike - a cold can best be avoided with professional cycling clothing. You should always have a change of suitable clothing to hand on a multi-day tour to be prepared for any eventuality. In addition to other important items of equipment, the necessary tools and repair utensils should not be forgotten. At high speeds, it is easy to take a wrong turn on a bike tour: Traditional and modern aids such as a cycle map or GPS device can help you find your way. You should also always have a small emergency kit with you.

Tips

The Ulmbach dam invites you to swim in summer, so bring your swimming gear! And if you want to end the day in a convivial atmosphere with a beer or regional specialities, you can do so in the nearby pizzeria with beer garden.

Literature

Destination

Leun district of Biskirchen

Starting Point

Knoten (R 8)

More information & GPX download

Notice

In the tour planner we inform you under the tab "Current info" about temporary route changes, closures and detours.

To the Tour Planer