Ski area Oberjoch Bad Hindelang
Skiing at Oberjoch in the Allgäu
The Oberjoch ski area stretches above the village of Bad Hindelang in Bavaria’s Allgäu region, reaching a high point of 1,560 metres. The lifts and pistes around the Iseler lift are usually open from mid-December to early April. The resort is ideal for families, and it has won many awards for its family friendliness. But there is also plenty to occupy more advanced skiers around Bad Hindelang, such as testing themselves on the official training run of the German Ski Association. There is also a wide choice of cosy mountain lodges and restaurants.
Oberjoch – mainly red and blue runs
Beneath the peaks of the Iseler and Kühgund, skiers and snowboarders have 35 kilometres of pistes to explore. Fun is guaranteed for beginners and intermediates alike on the 11 kilometres of blue runs and 22 kilometres of reds. There is a challenging 1-kilometre black run for expert skiers only. Oberjoch is well equipped with snow cannons, ensuring there is plenty of snow all season long.
Overview of the ski area – blue runs and a fun park
Oberjoch offers fun and skiing for all abilities. Schneekinderland Oberjoch is specially designed for children and is the perfect place for little ones to start their skiing careers. Covering 2 hectares, it is located at the bottom of the Iseler lift. Young skiers learn and have fun under the guidance of expert instructors. Riding back up the slope is easy thanks to the magic carpet, and kids can even tackle their first banked curves or try racing down a mini slalom course. There is also a playhouse, igloos and a tubing track. The Schneeleo practice area also helps children to get used to the rope lift and magic carpet, and the animal figures make it even more fun. Once they have mastered all the challenges in the children’s area, kids can head over to the Schwanden chairlift (G) or the Idealhang drag lift (D). After gaining confidence on these blue runs, there are loads of reds to explore. The Wiedhag and Grenzwies lifts take you to the start of some lovely runs. Some are quite challenging, such as the black freestyle mogul area. If you’d like to know how it feels to be a professional racer, take the Iseler lift to the start of the German Ski Association’s ATA training slope. And if you’re looking for a little off-piste skiing, try the nearby Steilschneise run (7a). At 2.5 kilometres, the Waldschneise is the longest run at Oberjoch, with an altitude difference of 400 metres. On Thursday evenings, 3 kilometres of slopes at the Iseler chairlift and the Idealhang drag lift are illuminated for night skiing. The small snow park at the Idealhang lift is a playground for freeskiers and boarders, who enjoy showing off their daring jumps and tricks on the jibs, rails and kickers.
Cosy lodges and Allgäu specialities
Oberjoch has ten mountain lodges for that vital refuelling stop. The cosy Iselerplatzhütte serves delicious food accompanied by stunning views. In the rustic surroundings of the Meckatzer Sportalp, hungry skiers and snowboarders can choose from hearty dishes such as roast beef with onions, rösti, the Allgäu’s famous Käsespätzle, or smoked Allgäu trout. The Gundhütte on the Gund slope is renowned for its excellent homemade cakes, while the Moorhütte specialises in game from its own hunting grounds, serving dishes like venison ragout and Wildgröstl (venison with herby fried potatoes). The Gundalpe is a popular après-ski spot, and the Pilsbar Schlupfwinkel and Jolo Bar both attract skiers to round off the day with drinks and good music. Other restaurants at the foot of the slopes offer a wide range of menus. The Zum Senn hotel in Oberjoch is the place to go for alpine classics such as raclette and fondue. In Bad Hindelang itself, Chesa Schneider combines international specialities with regional products. The Obere Mühle restaurant is also well worth a visit, particularly for its tête de veau and Kaiserschmarrn.
What to do when the weather is poor
When the sun takes a break to allow fresh snow to fall, nearby towns such as Oberstdorf, Immenstadt and Kempten have an abundance of shops, cafes and restaurants to keep you entertained. And the famous Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau castles are always worth a visit. Families with children should head for the Allgäulino indoor playround in Wertach. With its climbing frames, trampolines and bouncy castles, it’s the perfect place for kids to let off steam. If you enjoy racket sports, badminton and tennis are on offer at the sports centre in Bad Hindelang (Tennis- und Freizeitpark). The Wonnemar pool complex in Sonthofen is the perfect place to relax and have fun in its pools and water slides. Nearby Nesselwang also has an excellent pool complex, the Alpsitz-Badecenter. If you’re looking for indoor entertainment, there is a cinema in Sonthofen, while Bad Oberdorf has a fascinating museum of local history and traditional crafts. Art-lovers should ensure they visit the Kunsthaus Lipp gallery and the studio of renowned wood sculptor Christoph Finkel.
On average, January is the sunniest month in Oberjoch, when the sun shines almost every other day. January is also the month with the most snow, averaging 70 centimetres on the mountain and 50 centimetres in the valley. December and January are the coldest months, when night-time temperatures can fall below -10 degrees C. During the day, temperatures rise just above freezing. During the rest of the skiing season, it is usually slightly warmer and not quite so wintry.
If you like exploring on foot, you can choose from 50 kilometres of cleared winter hiking trails. The area around Oberjoch is also ideal for snowshoeing. All the equipment can be rented locally, and guided tours are available. Bad Hindelang is a mecca for tobogganers, who can choose from three natural toboggan runs, each 3.5 kilometres in length. Toboggans can be rented locally. Ice skaters have a choice of two natural ice rinks, one on the banks of the Ostrach river in Bad Hindelang, and another in Unterjoch. You can also try your hand at Eisstockschiessen – a kind of curling that is popular in the Alps. The area around Bad Hindelang is a top destination for cross-country skiers. 90 kilometres of groomed classic and skating trails criss-cross the area, linking the villages of Oberjoch and Unterjoch with the Tannheim valley and Jungholz. Food and drink is always available from the mountain huts situated along the skiing trails.