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Ith-Hils Trail - Crags and caves in the Weserbergland hills

The Ith-Hils Trail is a circular route in the eastern part of the Weserbergland hills, featuring breathtaking wooded ridges, historical towers, sacred sites, lakeland scenery and bizarre rock formations.

This route in the eastern part of the Weserbergland hills provides a rewarding experience both for seasoned hikers and casual walkers. At 22 kilometres, the stunning line of crags along the Ith ridge are the longest in northern Europe. They have names such as ‘Adam and Eve’, ‘Hammerslust’ and the ‘Wilhelm Raabe rocks’; the latter is named after the poet born in nearby Eschershausen. At the Rothesteinhöhle and Bärenhöhle caves, both of which are on the route, you can venture into the hillside.
Another cave with a historical background is the Lippoldshöhle, which served as a defensive post in the Middle Ages.

The bizarre landscape of crags and caves, however, is not the only feature of the route. Awaiting you at the end of the first stage is Humboldt lake, perfect for a refreshing dip on a warm summer’s day. The Ith crest then turns into the ‘Hils’ highland, where you can climb the Wilhelm Raabe Tower on the ridge and look across to Blosse Zelle, the highest point at 480 metres. In Grünenplan, the Erich Mäder Glass Museum is well worth a visit. Other cultural attractions along the way include Delligsen local history museum (which features more than 500 exhibits documenting its development from a farming village to an industrial community), Duingen pottery museum and Coppenbrügge Castle.

Tip: Rothesteinhöhle cave

Rothesteinhöhle cave, located at an altitude of 340 metres at the southern end of the Ith, is of great archaeological interest. A narrow crevice provides the entrance to the first tunnel, which is around 20 metres in length. Alfred Wollemann first explored the cave in 1853 and discovered pottery shards, bones and tools made of bronze.

At a glance:

  • Starts/Ends: Coppenbrügge (Felsenkeller)
  • Length: 80km
  • Number of stages: 7
  • Altitude variation: ascent 1,960m, descent 1,974m
  • Terrain: 57% unmade, 7% asphalt, 36% other, e.g. farm tracks

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