The Allgau Alps are not one of the highest groups of the Alps, but they are definitely one of the most popular. This is one of the most popular areas in Germany, perhaps second only to the mountains around Zugspitze.
The group has plenty of mountains which have grassy slopes on one side, and mighty, steep faces on the other. Most of these mountains are located around the central town of Oberstdorf.
The valley of the Iller River cuts through the range. Formed at the conjunction of the Breitach and Stillach Creeks near Oberstdorf, it divides the Allgau Alps in two very different parts. The eastern part is home to all of the highest summits, while the western part stops short at about 2,200m (with one notable exception: Widderstein). Politically the group is home to two expatriate Austrian Voralberg regions: Kleinwalsertal in the south-west and Jungholz to the north. Both can be reached only from Germany with no direct connections to their home country.
I had a great time ski touring here during the last two weeks. We had sunny weather and a lot of powder. Thanks to my dynamic risk assessments we avoided avalanches which would later trigger from the southern slopes.
We did five beautiful ski tours, which are briefly described below.
Pointen 2,045 m from the Schattwald
The usual starting point for this tour is the valley station of the chairlift Wannenjochbahn in the heart of the village of Schattwald, 1,088 m. From the parking lot, we headed along the right bank of the creek, fairly quickly leaving the forest behind. The lift and the Middle Stuibensennalpe (1403 m) in front of it came into our view. After leaving the resort we turned left and entered a valley below the summits of Pointen on the left and Bschiesser on the right. The skin track guided us to the saddle between Ponten and Bschiesser. The panorama from Ponten is always quite impressive. We skied slopes on the left side, which are in to the shade in the afternoon. We encountered good conditions and some dry, untracked powder.
Riedberger Horn 1,792 m from the Riedberger Pass
The tour to Riedbergerhorn was very nice and relaxing, since it is also suitable for beginners. The slopes along the tour face south, and the entire tour takes place mainly on gentle slopes, with perhaps only short sections that are moderately steep. Orientation is quite simple. If you want to make the tour even easier, you can use the Grasgehren lift and shorten the climb considerably. In favourable weather conditions, it is not uncommon for people to go to the summit more than once in a single day.
Spieser 1,641 m from the Unterjoch
Opposite the famous ski resort of Bad Hindelang-Oberjoch is the smaller and less known ski resort of Unterjoch Spieserliften.
Above the mountain station starts a small valley that gives access to the small mountain group with Jochschrofen, Hirschberg and Spieser. These mountains are all perfect for skiing. We skied down the northern slopes, which started off steep, before turning right and reaching wide open, gentle slopes which ended in a gorge. We crossed the gorge and arrived to the main road to Unterjoch.
Gamsfuss 1,990 m from the Baad
A comfortable ski tour, which takes place mostly on shaded slopes. The temperatures were a bit lower, so powder was dry and fluffy. Our tour started and finished in Baad.
Grunhorn 2,032 m from the Schwarzwassertal
When visiting the Schwarzwassertal, you should definitely check out the impressive twin peaks of the Grunhorn. The DAV hut in this beautiful and secluded area is a popular starting-point for several wonderful ski tours. Directly behind the hut lies the Grunhorn with its steep, impressive northern flank.
We began our tour at the DAV Schwarzwassertal hut. We skinned from the hut in a straight line and reached the northern slopes below the Grunhorn, where we turned left to reach a saddle. We followed the established skin track to the right, reaching the summit of Grunhorn.
We descended by following our line of ascent to saddle, before turning right and following the shaded slopes with great snow to the Schwarzwassertal.