Manuel Andrack on the way on the homeland traces: Homeland trace Kurschattensteig


Hike around an enchanting place

There are hiking markings that tell a beautiful story. In front of the Tourist Information in Bad Bertrich, I discover the marking of an ingenious circular hiking trail - a yellow umbrella with a blue heart underneath. What does that mean? Are heart patients supposed to stay under the umbrella? No, the hiking trail is called Kurschattensteig. The yellow umbrella provides the shade under which the heart connects - for a short time - with another heart.

You have to explain that to the younger hikers. In the 1960s and 1970s, it was common for health insurance companies to give employees a long stay at a spa several times during their working lives. And because a six-week cure can be not only really boring, but also quite lonely, the cure shadow was invented, a posh euphemism for jumping sideways during the cure. With or without our spa shadow we walk uphill through a residential area towards the Mooshütte, we walk the path counterclockwise. At the Mooshütte, moss is actually found between the wooden beams, like the mortar between bricks - a truly magical place.

By the time we reach the hut, we have already climbed a few meters in altitude. That is healthy, you can believe me. It seems less credible to me - I researched this on the Internet - that the spa shadow is "recognized by orthodox medicine as a natural means of promoting the success of the cure". This diagnosis comes rather from the realm of fake news.

In any case, we can catch great views of Bad Bertrich at the Mooshütte, as at countless other passages of the Heimatspur Kurschattensteig. Even without the spa shadow, our trail offers a therapy that delights every hiker's heart: beautiful paths plus great views plus numerous opportunities to rest. So slowly we hike back downhill towards Bad Bertrich and reach the parking lot east. We cross the Ueßbach, which can rush quite wildly after heavy rainfall. The Kurschattensteig leads us on a very romantic section (don't forget to cuddle with the spa shadow!) along the Schwanenweiher. However, when I hiked along the swan pond on the test hike, I didn't see any swans, just two remarkably ugly ducks. Whether they still turn into white swans, I dare to doubt.

And then it goes uphill once again. In case you didn't know: Bad Bertrich is a federal health resort. Since the Swiss national team moved into Bad Bertrich for the 2006 World Cup, the spa town in the Volcanic Eifel has been the 27th canton of the Confederates. And, quite honestly, one could have guessed from this mountainous, not to say alpine, landscape that Bad Bertrich belongs to Switzerland. The Kurschattensteig is quite strenuous (a total of 318 meters in altitude!). I guess that you have to love your spa shadow very much to do this. Between the Schwanenweiher and the Hohenzollern tower it goes up on alpine narrow paths.

It is the typical paths of the volcanic Eifel that make up the charm of this hike. The slate paths lead up the mountain along moss-covered rocks, and the passage over a mountain ridge is particularly spectacular, a real ridge walk. We reach the Hohenzollern tower with its characteristic red pointed roof. This is once again a good opportunity to make love to its spa shadow, either under the pointed roof or on the sensory lounger next door, in any case always with a view of the "Valley of Love", as the people of Bad Bertrich have called the amorous valley of the Ueßbach.

Slowly but surely we walk downhill again towards the tourist information. The last four hundred meters are a real challenge: We walk on narrow paths along rocks, the trees close over us like an arbor. Until the finale, a great hiking adventure. Very, very recommendable is this home trail, with or without spa shadow.

Author: Manuel Andrack

Discover together with Manuel Andrack the third most beautiful hiking trail in Germany and enjoy a carefree time with an evening reading of the "hiking master" - more information.

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