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Charlotta Richter
Nature Photography & Blog

A weekend in the Elbsansteingebirge
(the saxon sandstone mountains)
During May 2017 I decided to do a little weekend trip. Because I have never been to this part of Germany, and also because I saw quite a lot pictures of the stone formations, I chose the Elbsandsteingebirge.
So I packed up my Polo with a tent and my Mountainbike with nothing particular planned.
I drove about 400 km from Hamburg. In Dresden I did a little stop and strolled around the city, looking at the famous churches and walking along the elb.
Dresden

I was lucky enough to get the last campspot on the campground "Kleine Bergoase Sächsische Schweiz". (I didn't reserved it.) It's a small place with a cordial host.



Elbsandsteingebirge




The same evening I explored the area (without any plan or map). It had nice views and awesome paths. (You're only allowed to bike on some paths as I later discovered.)


Cube Cross Country Ltd

The next day I woke up early to the fog rising from the valley.

I visited the Bastei and did a 10 km hike around it. I recommend to walk through the Schwedenlöcher, following the way to the Amselsee and along the elb.

The Bastei Bridge:
Elbsandsteingebirge Bastei
Around the Bastei and the parking lot it is quite full. But just by walking a little bit you can escape the most tourist. At least that's what I experienced.
Schwedenlöcher:
Elbsandsteingebirge Schwedenlöcher
The view while standing on the Bastei:
Elbsandsteingebirge Bastei Aussicht
Elbe bei Dresden
In the afternoon I did another hike. This time starting at the campground. Walking pass the Beuthentall, to the Lichtenhainer Wasserfall and back, heading to the Affenstein climbing up the Häntzschelstiege and along the Affensteinpromenade. I met a nice couple on the way and we hiked together to the Carolafelsen.

 After 3 hours I had to get back down in the valley. That's when I got a bit lost. I originally planned to use the Wilde Hölle for my way back down, but missed the path and walked in the wrong direction. Until I met a group of people that hiked up there in the mountains to bivouak. They showed me the right way.
So I ended up back in the Nasser Grund, where I was able to find a way back up to the campground.
Elbsandsteingebirge Wanderung
Standing on the Affensteine:
Elbsandsteingebirge Häntzschelstiege
But first you have to get up here. It is recommended to use the Häntzschelstiege up, but not down. Except you got climbing equipment.
   
Häntzschelstiege Elbsandsteingebirge Elbsandsteingebirge Häntzschelstiege
Wilde Hölle
On the Carolafelsen:
Elbsandsteingebirge Carolafels





Some abandoned houses in the Nasser Grund:
I really recommend buying a classic map of walks. It helps to orientate oneself in a wider frame and look up possible objects to visit that are near you (even without Wlan ;)).

My second tour was suprisingly quiet. Of course you will meet people at the sight spots, but during the hike I was mostly alone. In my opinion that is a big advance of camping a little aside of the typical tourist attractions. Generally it is a rural area, but in the villages you got cafes and some shops. Also you're only 20 kms away from Dresden.

 I will definitely come back here.