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near Irrel, Rheinland-Pfalz (Deutschland)
This trail is equivalent to tour 24 of the Rother Eifel Wanderführer (3rd edition, 2000). Much has changed since it was published. Perhaps more recent editions have done away with some puzzles. In the digital age, ‘left at the telephone booth’ is no longer a good description. Even the trail itself has seen its best. The roof of the shelter at waypoint 10 rests on the ground, and forks and crossing are not always marked.
Notwithstanding, this is a hugely recommended trip, which is perhaps a little more demanding than the standard visit to the Teufelsschlucht that begins at the new Tourist and Information center. But then you may savor the quiet, move away from the hustle and bustle, and get an expanded view into this unique rock landscape. If you can afford it, try the trail on any other day than on a summer weekend,
The Devil’s Canyon proper is between waypoints 14 and 16.
The Canyon is not at the level of the river Prüm, but considerably higher up. That is why you should calculate about 370 meters each in cumulative ascent and descent.
Some more details:
When leaving the parking, it is worthwhile to make a short excursion to the bridge across the Prüm and to follow the somewhat indistinct path for a while. Eventually, the path is blocked and you will have to use a concrete path higher up. This path is still nice to walk; it follows the Prüm upstream until Prümzurlay.
Later on, the trail follows a formerly-well-maintained path below impressive rock formations. Nowadays, the path is in bad repair, and not always easy to find. Steps are often slippery, have moved off, or are covered in soil and leaves. Take sturdy boots.
Worthwhile is a short sidetrip to the viewpoint 15, the only place from which to see Irrel on this hike.
The path through the Devil’s Canyon proper is well secured and safe, but may require some acrobatics and can be very narrow.
The bridge across the Prüm is a highlight in itself.