Time  7 hours 33 minutes

Coordinates 2848

Uploaded December 8, 2018

Recorded November 2018

  • Rating

     
  • Information

     
  • Easy to follow

     
  • Scenery

     
-
-
2,296 f
1,620 f
0
4.6
9.1
18.29 mi

Viewed 231 times, downloaded 10 times

near Ruitzhof, Nordrhein-Westfalen (Deutschland)

This beautiful hike through the Hautes Fagnes/Hohes Venn nature reserve takes you from the Vennbahn station of Reichenstein to the highest point of Belgium (Botrange) and back. The hike is on trails, forest roads, and boardwalks. You will find something to eat at Botrange and the Maison du Parc Botrange (Centre Nature).
The hike starts at the parking of the Vennbahn station of Reichenstein, near the Reichenstein Abbey. You cross the cycling path and walk up into the woods past the border stones. About 600 m further you come to a rocky outcrop called Richelsley, with a large cross on top (Kreuz im Venn). A small cave with a Mary statue (Mariengrotte) can be found at the foot. From Richelsley you continue on quiet forest roads (largely paved) around the Pannensterzkopf hill. You descend towards the valley of the Hill/Helle river. Just before you descend you have a great view across the valley towards the Grande Fagne. Below, near the river, you find the Pouhon de Herzogenhügel, a source of ferruginous water. You cross the river and follow a small trail through the moors in the beautiful Helle valley, partly on boardwalks. At the Petit Bongard bush you turn right and follow a trail through the wood until you get to the edge of the Grande Fagne. A single path takes you straight through the moors. In the first section you pass a small lake, typical of the area. It’s called a pingo or palsa, a small lake created by the melting of a lens of ice. A bit further you pass the Geitzbusch, a forest with a lot of dead trees in the middle of the moors. You pass this forest and head for the next collection of dead trees, the Noir Flohay. From here the path turns left towards the boardwalk from Baraque Michel along the Helle. You follow the boardwalk upstream until you get to the Belgian-Prussian border stone. Here you turn left on another boardwalk along the Fagne Wallonne straight towards Botrange. Near Botrange there is a viewpoint across the moors. At Botrange, there is a restaurant, and a small hill with stone steps bridging the gap between 693 m altitude and 700 m (the Baltia tower). Parallel to the main road you walk to the nature center, where there is a small restaurant (‘Fagnetaria’) as well. You cross the road and walk northeast along the Fagne Wallonne and the woods. You turn right on a forest road until you get to the Sentier de la Roer, a small track through the woods taking you along one Roer branch to the other. You then cross the young river and walk on the other side of the Roer until you get to a forest road bridge across the river. A path takes you along the Bosfagne moor before you cross woods to the Nesselo moor and the Scheidbach. Just past this moor I went left through the Rurbusch, but found at the end that the track was off-limits to hikers. I replaced the track for this part with an alternative track, right and then left twice getting you to the same point (the waypoint marked Rurbusch). You follow the forest road, turn right until at the end you walk through grass on a minor path and another minor path through the woods until you get to the forest road. You follow the road until the turn-off taking you to the Schwarzsee, a small reservoir in the Schwarzbach valley. You then follow the valley on a forest road and then a track until you get to the German border. You cross the stream and the border and then walk up into the Ruitzhof enclave. This piece of land is completely surrounded by Belgian borders (part of it the Vennbahn), and consists of pasture with good views of the Eifel. You leave the enclave on the other side and walk back to the starting point.
  • Photo of Along the Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Along the Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Along the Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Along the Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Along the Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Along the Fagne Wallonne
A broad forest track takes you along the Fagne Wallonne and spruce forest. The Roer river has two sources in the Fagne Wallonne to your left.
  • Photo of Baltia Tower
  • Photo of Baltia Tower
  • Photo of Baltia Tower
  • Photo of Baltia Tower
  • Photo of Baltia Tower
  • Photo of Baltia Tower
Artificial hill named after a Belgian military officer. The steps take you up to 700 meters altitude.
  • Photo of Boardwalk and path along Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Boardwalk and path along Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Boardwalk and path along Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Boardwalk and path along Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Boardwalk and path along Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Boardwalk and path along Fagne Wallonne
A boardwalk and then an unpaved road takes you along the Fagne Wallonne towards the Botrange.
  • Photo of Boardwalk Helle valley
  • Photo of Boardwalk Helle valley
  • Photo of Boardwalk Helle valley
  • Photo of Boardwalk Helle valley
  • Photo of Boardwalk Helle valley
  • Photo of Boardwalk Helle valley
Beautiful board walk along the Helle (or Hill) river.
  • Photo of Border
  • Photo of Border
  • Photo of Border
  • Photo of Border
  • Photo of Border
Border between the German enclave Ruitzhof and Belgium
  • Photo of Border stone
  • Photo of Border stone
  • Photo of Border stone
  • Photo of Border stone
  • Photo of Border stone
  • Photo of Border stone
Border stone in the woods
  • Photo of Descent Hill valley
  • Photo of Descent Hill valley
  • Photo of Descent Hill valley
  • Photo of Descent Hill valley
  • Photo of Descent Hill valley
Here you descend towards the Hill/Helle valley with view to the Grande Fagne
  • Photo of Forest Road
  • Photo of Forest Road
  • Photo of Forest Road
  • Photo of Forest Road
  • Photo of Forest Road
Paved forest road between Sourbrodt and Kalterherberg
  • Photo of Geitzbusch
  • Photo of Geitzbusch
  • Photo of Geitzbusch
  • Photo of Geitzbusch
  • Photo of Geitzbusch
  • Photo of Geitzbusch
Forest with quite a few dead trees in the middle of the Grande Fagne
  • Photo of Hill crossing
  • Photo of Hill crossing
  • Photo of Hill crossing
  • Photo of Hill crossing
  • Photo of Hill crossing
  • Photo of Hill crossing
Crossing of the Hill river
  • Photo of Hill valley
  • Photo of Hill valley
  • Photo of Hill valley
  • Photo of Hill valley
  • Photo of Hill valley
  • Photo of Hill valley
Trail through the Hill valley
  • Photo of Kreuz im Venn / Richelsley
  • Photo of Kreuz im Venn / Richelsley
  • Photo of Kreuz im Venn / Richelsley
  • Photo of Kreuz im Venn / Richelsley
  • Photo of Kreuz im Venn / Richelsley
  • Photo of Kreuz im Venn / Richelsley
Big cross on top of the Richelsley rocks
  • Photo of Lookout point Botrange
  • Photo of Lookout point Botrange
  • Photo of Lookout point Botrange
  • Photo of Lookout point Botrange
  • Photo of Lookout point Botrange
  • Photo of Lookout point Botrange
Viewing platform on the edge of the Fagne Wallonne
  • Photo of Mariengrotte
  • Photo of Mariengrotte
  • Photo of Mariengrotte
  • Photo of Mariengrotte
  • Photo of Mariengrotte
Small 'cave' in the rocks with Mary statue
  • Photo of Minor path
  • Photo of Minor path
  • Photo of Minor path
  • Photo of Minor path
Minor path through grass and then woods.
  • Photo of Noir Flohay
  • Photo of Noir Flohay
  • Photo of Noir Flohay
  • Photo of Noir Flohay
  • Photo of Noir Flohay
  • Photo of Noir Flohay
Collection of dead trees in the middle of the moors. Peculiar sight
  • Photo of Path through Fagne des Deux Séries
  • Photo of Path through Fagne des Deux Séries
  • Photo of Path through Fagne des Deux Séries
  • Photo of Path through Fagne des Deux Séries
  • Photo of Path through Fagne des Deux Séries
  • Photo of Path through Fagne des Deux Séries
Straight trail through the Fagne des Deux Séries, part of the Grande Fagne
  • Photo of Petit Bongard
  • Photo of Petit Bongard
  • Photo of Petit Bongard
  • Photo of Petit Bongard
  • Photo of Petit Bongard
  • Photo of Petit Bongard
Bush at the edge of the moors
  • Photo of Pingo or Palsa
  • Photo of Pingo or Palsa
  • Photo of Pingo or Palsa
  • Photo of Pingo or Palsa
  • Photo of Pingo or Palsa
  • Photo of Pingo or Palsa
Little lake called a pingo or a palsa (I am not sure). Formed by a lens of ice pushing away the ground and then creating a lake after melting
  • Photo of Pouhon de Herzogenhügel
  • Photo of Pouhon de Herzogenhügel
  • Photo of Pouhon de Herzogenhügel
  • Photo of Pouhon de Herzogenhügel
  • Photo of Pouhon de Herzogenhügel
Source with water containing iron.
  • Photo of Prussian border stone
  • Photo of Prussian border stone
  • Photo of Prussian border stone
  • Photo of Prussian border stone
  • Photo of Prussian border stone
  • Photo of Prussian border stone
A border stone between Belgium and Prussia. The border ran from here along the Hill from Eupen to Baraque Michel.
  • Photo of Reichenstein Station
  • Photo of Reichenstein Station
  • Photo of Reichenstein Station
  • Photo of Reichenstein Station
  • Photo of Reichenstein Station
  • Photo of Reichenstein Station
Former station on the Vennbahn, now an access point to the new cycling path.
  • Photo of River crossing
  • Photo of River crossing
  • Photo of River crossing
  • Photo of River crossing
  • Photo of River crossing
  • Photo of River crossing
Here you walk through the Roer river (not too deep), and continue along the river to the bridge.
  • Photo of Ruitzhof
  • Photo of Ruitzhof
  • Photo of Ruitzhof
  • Photo of Ruitzhof
  • Photo of Ruitzhof
  • Photo of Ruitzhof
German enclave with farms, fields and beech trees. Good views of Kalterherberg and the Eifel.
  • Photo of Rurbusch
  • Photo of Rurbusch
  • Photo of Rurbusch
  • Photo of Rurbusch
  • Photo of Rurbusch
Forest near the Roer river.
  • Photo of Schwarzbach valley road
  • Photo of Schwarzbach valley road
  • Photo of Schwarzbach valley road
  • Photo of Schwarzbach valley road
  • Photo of Schwarzbach valley road
  • Photo of Schwarzbach valley road
Forest road through the Schwarzbach valley
  • Photo of Schwarzsee dam
  • Photo of Schwarzsee dam
  • Photo of Schwarzsee dam
  • Photo of Schwarzsee dam
  • Photo of Schwarzsee dam
Dam creating the Schwarzsee
  • Photo of Schwarzsee viewpoint
  • Photo of Schwarzsee viewpoint
  • Photo of Schwarzsee viewpoint
  • Photo of Schwarzsee viewpoint
  • Photo of Schwarzsee viewpoint
  • Photo of Schwarzsee viewpoint
Viewpoint across the Schwarzsee.
  • Photo of Sentier de la Roer
  • Photo of Sentier de la Roer
  • Photo of Sentier de la Roer
  • Photo of Sentier de la Roer
  • Photo of Sentier de la Roer
  • Photo of Sentier de la Roer
Here you enter a trail along the Roer river which is closed between 2 hours before sunset to 2 hours after sunrise to protect red deer.
  • Photo of Signal de Botrange
  • Photo of Signal de Botrange
  • Photo of Signal de Botrange
Highest point of Belgium with a restaurant, large parking, telecommunication tower and the small Baltia tower which brings you up to 700 m
  • Photo of Stellerholz forest road
  • Photo of Stellerholz forest road
  • Photo of Stellerholz forest road
  • Photo of Stellerholz forest road
  • Photo of Stellerholz forest road
  • Photo of Stellerholz forest road
Paved forest road
  • Photo of Trail along the Schwarzbach
  • Photo of Trail along the Schwarzbach
  • Photo of Trail along the Schwarzbach
  • Photo of Trail along the Schwarzbach
  • Photo of Trail along the Schwarzbach
  • Photo of Trail along the Schwarzbach
Trail along the Schwarzbach valley
  • Photo of Unpaved forest road
  • Photo of Unpaved forest road
  • Photo of Unpaved forest road
  • Photo of Unpaved forest road
Unpaved forest road taking you to the Sentier de la Roer
  • Photo of Zwischen dem Busch - Nesselo
  • Photo of Zwischen dem Busch - Nesselo
  • Photo of Zwischen dem Busch - Nesselo
  • Photo of Zwischen dem Busch - Nesselo
Between two forests is a small moor called Nesselo

2 comments

  • Photo of elce2106

    elce2106 Jan 11, 2019

    Tjaart, wat een mooie omgeving om te wandelen. Bij mij ook goed bekend. Sfeervolle weergave van de tocht door de vele foto’s. Je geeft een moeilijkheidsgraad van matig op, ik denk dat voor de meeste mensen ‘t een echte uitdaging is, om deze tocht na te lopen, gezien de lengte en het hoogteverschil.

  • Photo of Tjaart Molenkamp

    Tjaart Molenkamp Jan 11, 2019

    Bedankt Elce voor je review en beschouwing. Mooi dat het goed bevallen is. Ik heb matig aangegeven omdat het niet te steil is, maar de kwalificatie is subjectief. Het is natuurlijk wel langer en op sommige plekken wat modderig.

You can or this trail