I recently visited a salt cave for the very first time and really liked it. It was sort of a grotto filled with large amounts of salt. A variety of salts ― Dead Sea, Himalayan, rock salt, etc. ― filled the climate-controlled space and turned it into a meditative settings.
At first, I was a bit skeptical, but I really needed a short break from the past crazy months, having worked 24/7, seven days a week. And I gotta say, this 50-minute session really did the trick and I got to hit my reset button. The air felt sooooo good, it was extremely quiet and peaceful, I almost fell asleep.
The health benefits aren‘t really scientifically proven, but salt caves are supposed to help with improved breathing, they boost your immune system, help fight infections, anxiety or stress and are good for a juvenile-looking skin. Well, since I only attended one session, I can neither confirm nor deny those theories, but I do know that I will integrate it in my after-workout-routines ‘cause it is soothing and relaxing.
Shocking! Munich Mountain Rebel is leaving Munich some time in December. 🙃 My time in Munich has come to an end. I have been here for almost 20 years, with some breaks in between, where I lived in Berlin, explored Australia or spent some other time abroad. It played a huge chapter along my journey, helped me grow, I met amazing people, never stopped exploring and learning at my jobs and I met some of my best friends EVER, that have now become part of my family.
A personal note
I wasn’t sure, whether I should write a long blog post on everything or some of the greatest memories I made, but nothing would do justice. Besides, I don’t wanna bore you with half my vita here on this blog. I mean, I started my career, my profession, in Munich at the agency haebmau after some experience in the media industry. When you read my old yearbook entries I always wanted to become a journalist, but after time I discovered my love for brand strategies and digital marking – always “hungry” for more, wanting to create change and finding simple solutions for complex problems. Looking back, I am so grateful for all opportunities. Whenever something presented itself as a chance to broaden my horizon or to learn more, I grasped the opportunity with both hands. Whether it was with haebmau, Sony, Ketchum, fischerAppelt, Holtzbrinck, gutefrage.net, Rapid Peaks, wirhelfen.eu, the Fritzmeier Umwelttechnik, or the amazing brands and companies I got to work with such as Salewa, Weber Grill, Adidas, SAP, FC Bayern, BMW, Coca-Cola, Biotaurus, Kungs, Victorinox, Generali, or the endless projects I got to create during my 13 years of blogging at V’s World, having 500,000 readers every single month. I traveled the world, learned so many new things, not just on a professional and personal level, tried scuba diving, paragliding, went beyond my limits on trail running competitions, discovered mountain biking as a passion, fell in love with the great outdoors, learned the ropes of a mountaineering guide and so much more. As I said, I could never do justice saying “thank you” to everything that has happened during the past 20 years. And I am pretty sure I forgot someone or something.
Thank you, Munich
In retrospective, there were no wasted opportunities, no dead ends. Everything together made me who I am now and over time I found my purpose. Find your purpose and you will find your voice – and then everything automatically falls in place, no matter where you are.
The past years during the pandemic and now during the economic crisis and in times of war in Europe, many of us got to reflect, put things in perspective again and realized or remembered what is really important to every single one of us. For me, this means: my family and following my purpose to get things moving; creating solutions that have an impact in the brand marketing world and hopefully beyond – meaning, creating values and solutions that are useful or helpful in our world.
So, yes, now it is time. I am leaving Munich by the end of this year, just right before Christmas. I am moving to my family in Westphalia and am really excited about my next chapters. And no worries, there is lots of room for my outdoor adventures, there are bike trails in my hood, yes, I will still do some mountaineering tours, but also explore other mountain regions or national parks – and most importantly, spending more time with my family. Here you will find a little sneak peek of what is close to my new home.
You can keep following me on my social channels, I will continue to share my outdoor and travel tips here on the blog and regarding my profession, my love for brand strategies and digital marketing is forever. I will stay your Munich Mountain Rebel, just living somewhere else. And yes, I will definitely plan some trips to the greater Munich area to spend some time with my friends every now and then. 🙂
I am stealing this quote ’cause it fits. “Stay hungry, stay foolish.”
You are looking for a relaxing family walk during the Easter holidays? Then I can recommend a trip to the high moors of Schönramer Filz with magical mountain views. Here, you will encounter all kinds of small adventures for young and old.
Spring is in the air, but our home mountains are still covered in snow. If you are looking for a nice afternoon walk before the sun goes down, check out the route from Kreuth to the Wolfsschlucht: very easy, yet pretty beautiful.
However, make sure to bring waterproof gear, since you need to cross rivers fed by melting snow. At the Wolfsschlucht waterfalls be aware that there can be avalanche risks till late June. So check the reports in advance.
One thing 2020 taught us is to you cherish the little things in life. Here I put together some of my favorite tours during the lockdown, exploring our home mountains near Munich 🏔
Sport Sessions at Lake Spitzingsee
Whether you take a little hike to the Obere Firstalm, go fatbiking or explore the cross-country trails, it is one of my favorite places for a short sports session.
Recovery Hike at Lake Tegernsee
After a tough workout I love to go for a little recovery hike at lake Tegernsee – especially the Hoehenweg from Gmund and to the Neureuth mountain hut.
For those who are fit, I recommend a snowshoeing tour in Garmisch. You start at the valley station of the Hausberg, take the hiking route up to the Kochelbergalm. There you check your mountaineering gear and put on your snowshoes hiking up to the Bayernhaus, then even further to the Kreuzwankl skiing slopes and to the Trögelhuette with majestic views of the Zugspitze.
During the lockdown all slopes and cable cars are closed so that you need to be fit enough to climb up in deep snow and also hike back down. Elevation gain with some very steep passages: 800 – 1,100 m, 17-21k.
Once you are already in Garmisch and did a great snowshoeing tour, take a relaxing recovery walk along the lake Eibsee and just breathe: a nice 8k walk to refuel your energy.
Josefstal at Lake Schliersee
Another magic recovery tour is the hike from lake Schliersee to the Josefstal waterfalls. A calming route with beautiful views.
However, always make sure to check weather reports, bring the right equipment & safety gear, lots of fluids and always listen to your body. Only go on tours you can manage & remember that touring in snowy & icy conditions is more difficult & might take up more time as well. Stay safe and healthy!
During fall season, this area around the Kreuzeck is a secret tip: not crowded, endless trails for mountain bikers, climbers, trail runners and hikers. On my last tour I also discovered a magical spot for a snowshoeing tour in winter. As soon as the cable cars are up and running again after the winter COVID lockdown, I will share it with you.
But for now, I will leave you with my fall impressions.
I love the Zugspitz Arena, especially the Austrian side. One of my all-time favorites is the area in Ehrwald, up to lake Seebensee with some nice flowing trails. Just take the cable car up to the Ehrwalder Alm and then enjoy your ride.
“Jobs fill your pocket, adventures fill your soul.” I just love the wild camping season. All I need is my bivouac & my bike, sleeping outdoors underneath the stars. This time, I got a special tip for everyone near Munich, a beautiful night hike at Lake Tegernsee.
Sunrise Tour Baumgartenschneid
In mid August, showers of meteors hit Earth. The Perseids return at the same time every year. Hence, I did a night tour to the Baumgartenschneid – a familiar, rather easy tour.
Together with my friend Alexa, we took the train out from Munich at around midnight. Arriving at the train station in Tegernsee, it was already pretty cold. Colder than we actually expected and pretty humid. We definitely needed to wear our three layers in order to stay warm.
Since it was so dark and cold, I decided to take the route via the Prinzenweg, Gindelalm and then directly to the Baumgartenschneid (1449m). This one is safer at night and easier. Well, at least, I thought so. Due to the new moon, the sky was pretty clear. It was breathtakingly beautiful. You could even see the milky way.
But it was also darker than usual. Although we were wearing our headlights, you could not see that much.
The forest looks so different at night, it smells different, sounds different, the dimensions seem to be different. But I love it. It is mystical, magical – so calm and peaceful. Carrying 15kg in our backpacks, not seeing that much, meant, we really needed to focus. The path was trickier than expected. Not since it was too steep, but in the darkness we sometimes missed the signs so that at one point we got lost. I could tell that we were going the wrong way, but just could not find the actual path. Using both our lamps, looking around, it just was imposssible to see it. But since I am pretty familar with reading the stars and directions, I just followed my gut. It was about a 30-minute detour, but then we were on the right track again.
All in all, it took us about three hours to reach the Baumgartenschneid, overlooking Lake Tegernsee at night.
Sleeping underneath the stars
At around 4:30 a.m. we decided to camp at the alp, just using our sleeping mat, outdoor pillow and sleeping bag. Although it was still pretty cold and humid we changed into our sleeping clothes, crawled into our sleeping bags and simply watched the stars. MAGICAL! I saw four shooting stars, making a wish for my family and me.
We did not really sleep, though. It was just too beautiful. So quiet and peaceful. You only heard the bells from the nearby roaming cows at the alp and the chirping sound of the crickets. It is these little things in life that are just priceless!
At around 5.30 a.m. the sky was changing its colors, shining in different shades of red, orange and purple. Wow, just WOW. The sun was rising as a red fire ball on the horizon and at the same time you could see and hear the forest waking up. The things that have been so dark and mystical at night started to look bright and colorful. It could not get more romantic than this. We did not really talk. We just sat there, all cuddled up in our sleeping bag, watching the sun rise, watching the forest to wake up. If you ever get a chance to do something like this during new moon and the weather is fine, don’t think twice, just do it. You will fall in love with nature, with life, all over again.
At around 6:30 a.m. the cows from the alp decided to come close to us, literally licking our faces and bodies. Yes, LITERALLY. Guess, this was our time to get up and pack our things hiking to the mountain peak, enjoying the even more beautiful views over Lake Tegernsee – all by ourselves.
One hour later the first locals arrived doing their morning exercise routine, which was our cue to leave, all smiling and happy.
For my friend, it was her first night tour, her first time sleeping underneath the stars, watching the sun rise. For those of you who have never done it before, either, I got some special packing tips for you.
At night it gets pretty cold up on the mountain. Thus, make sure to bring enough layers and a very good sleeping bag. I prefer one with a hood ’cause I just love it cozy and warm. In your sleeping bag, only wear your base layer. For the first five minutes, you still might be pretty cold, but afterwards, it gets much warmer. Believe me, the less you wear, the better.
This was my packing list:
backpack with room for a hydration pack
2 L hydration pack
changing-clothes (base layer, mid-layer, rain jacket, extra pair of socks)
bikini and sandals for a morning swim in the lake
wet wipes, tooth brush and tooth paste
something to eat (energy bar, some fruit, breakfast)
thermos flask with tea, coffee or hot chocolate
high-quality sleeping bag that keeps you warm
portable power bank
However, make sure that you only pack what you can carry. If the backpack is too heavy for you and you are not used to it, make some changes. I for example have problems carrying a 15kg backpack on my MTB and then riding up a hill – no freaking chance. Still need to find a good solution for me there. Hence, I always do a combination of ride and hike when carrying loads of stuff.
Just try what works best for you and simply have fun, enjoying the great outdoors.