This past Saturday we took a day trip to Bad Urach. It is about 40 minutes south from our place here in Stuttgart-Möhringen. One of the main attractions is the beautiful Wasserfall (waterfall) in the Swabian Alb. After parking along a dirt road we walked along the Brühlbach stream for about 1.5 miles. We had a beautiful day for our little hike with the sun burning through the misty morning and sparkling on the clear water running in the stream. Peter liked walking along the very edge of the stream, occasionally stopping to dip his hand in the ice cold water. (The stream was along flat ground and extremely shallow in most parts. And yes, I did the mom thing and shouted, "Not too close! Step back, you'll fall in!") Marky liked picking up "special rocks" (gravel) to throw into the stream.
When we reached the bottom of the falls we realized that our pleasant walk was about to become a more strenuous hike. Beginning at the base of the falls is the climb up along steep stone steps interspersed with dirt trails. The waterfall itself falls 130 ft and then runs off over moss-covered rocks. Most of the hike is spent walking along the water with breathtaking views and the pretty sound of the water. As I said, the walk was very steep and it is hard to get this from the photos. There were benches here and there at small landings as well as logs and rocks you could perch upon. Peter was once again a great explorer and led the way. I was so proud of little Marky Moo who walked almost the entire trail himself! A big feat for such a peanut.
The top of the falls gives way to a large, flat wooded area with a small house serving the prerequisite German assortment of beer, wine, brats and pretzels. There is a little picnic area to enjoy a rest and treat after the hike as well as an area to build campfires if you wish to cook yourself. Along the top edge of the falls is a panoramic view of the valley. We can't wait to go back in the summer when the valley will be a lush green and the trails will be canopied by green-leaved trees. Also hoping to explore and hike a little more as there are ruins from a castle built in 1100 further up the mountain!
One final note: Mom is always right. Peter fell in the stream. But luckily, it was at the end of our hike as we were nearing the car. It was very shallow and as he stood up from dipping his hand in the water, he lost his balance and stepped forward into the stream so luckily he was only wet up to mid-calf. I couldn't help but laugh as he stood mid-stream yelling, "Moooooooom!" and I said, "Well, what are you just standing there for? Get out of the water already!" I think Marky was the most traumatized as the poor guy started bawling his eyes out when his big brother fell in. We did have a good ride home though as I thought to bring a change of clothes for both boys - just in case.
We purchased what promised to be some type of homemade braunschweiger (or at least this is what
we surmised with our limited Deutsch) and were served some nice bread, two rubbery gherkins and
a can-o-meat. It actually wasn't that bad. Then again, we were pretty hungry after our hike.
And you can't go wrong with the pretzels.
Marky, getting a little help on the way down.