Home » Cross-country skiing – on skis through the Harz Mountains
Cross-country skiing in the Harz Mountains

Cross-country skiing – on skis through the Harz Mountains


Cross-country skiers can look forward to a wide network of cross-country trails in the Harz mountains. A total of about 500 kilometres of track runs through the winter Harz landscape and partly connects villages with each other. During the more than 120-year-old skiing history of the Harz region, an excellent infrastructure for cross-country skiing has grown. Whether classic style or skating, whether experienced or untrained, the Oberharz has the right track for everyone. Cross-country skiing in the Harz Mountains is an experience for the whole family.

Skiing – Cross-country skiing in and around Clausthal-Zellerfeld

In today’s mountain town Clausthal-Zellerfeld the traditional history of Harz skiing began around 1870. At that time, young Norwegians were studying at the Clausthal Montanist school. They had brought with them snow-capable means of transport from their homeland, which they called skis, which roughly means split wood. On these boards they glided through the snow-covered Oberharz, whose cultural landscape is characterised by stately spruces as well as the ponds and watercourses of the Oberharzer Wasserregales.

Today, skiers will find around 35 kilometres of well-tracked trails in and around the climatic health resort, assuming the appropriate snow conditions. In clear winter weather, the family-suitable sun trail on the outskirts of Zellerfeld is particularly attractive because the sun can shine on the entire route. An easily accessible cross-country trail leads from Clausthal to the tranquil village of Buntenbock Buntenbock, where other skating trails and cross-country trails for classical style are prepared. Cross-country skiers can even reach Altenau from Hausherzberger Teich on a disused railway line. This track is certified as a premium track.

Cross-country skiing in the Harz Mountains – snow-covered mountain meadows and valleys

Altenau also offers excellent conditions for cross-country skiing on skis, as evidenced by the rolled ski trail over the Rosewiese with its panoramic views into the Großen Oker valley. A DSV premium cross-country ski trail connects the Altenau ski trails with the cross-country ski trail network of the Harz National Park. A few kilometres to the south the mountain town St. Andreasberg (St. Andreas Berg) lures with the probably snow-sure cross-country skiing area of Lower Saxony. Its cross-country trails lead up to 900 metres above sea level, through dense forests and over snow-covered mountain meadows. On the way, the cross-country skier is offered dreamlike views of the scenery of the National Park and Nature Park. The ski trail network is made up of routes with varying degrees of scenic variety and offers ambitious runners challenging day trips.

Braunlage cross-country skiing trails – in the winter sports centre of the Harz Mountains

As a winter sports centre of the Harz Mountains, Braunlage is also adapted to the needs of cross-country skiers. The probably first skier of the climatic health resort was Oberförster Arthur Ulrichs. He had heard of the snowworthy boards and had such snowshoes built in the winter of 1883/84 in order to inspect damage in the inaccessible forest. Apparently he liked this winter way of moving so much that he became involved in the proliferation of skiing. Already in 1892 the first local snowshoe club was founded. A few years later the “Oberharzer Skiklub” (OHSK) was founded in the Brockenhaus, which soon became an institution of German skiing.

Cross-country skiing in the Harz has a long tradition. Among the milestones on the region’s way to becoming a winter sports region were the traditional winter festivals of St. Andreasberg, the first ski race in 1897 and the bid to host the 1936 Olympic Games. On this basis, the area around Braunlage has developed into a paradise for cross-country skiers. The well signposted cross-country ski trail network extends to Hohegeiß, Torfhaus and Schierke and offers connection to the Südharzer cross-country ski trail network. With a suitable long up ski, the experienced skier with good condition can even climb the Brocken. The connecting trail to Schierker Loipennetz starts at the summit of Wurmberges.

When snow covers the bizarre landscape, bends the branches of the conifers and transforms weathered rock into fantastic formations, a stay in the Harz region is particularly attractive. Cross-country skiing on varied cross-country trails is a wonderful way to enjoy all the splendour.

For first attempts at walking on cross-country skis the cross-country ski run Sonnenloipe in Braunlage is ideal. In addition to plenty of sunshine and a wonderful view of the surrounding countryside, this circuit offers ideal conditions for beginners and can be used as a starting point for entering the extensive network of trails.

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