The Black Forest Highlands Shepherd’s Trail [Hochschwarzwälder Hirtenpfad] is an 8 km long, topclass hiking trail that leads you along blooming meadows and airy forest outskirts all around the typical Black Forest hamlet of Raitenbuch.
Children have kept cattle herds for centuries, including here in the Black Forest. As shepherds boys mainly boys came to the Black Forest farms, because their own, large families were happy for each eater less. They were 7 to 14 years old. They worked and studied for 12 to 15 hours a day, away from their families. In wind and weather they were on the move, mostly barefoot. Childhood, marked by privation and hard work, as we can no longer imagine today. The rural life on the "high forest" before 1960 was modest and hard and still no place "where others went on holiday". Particularly touching is the life of the children who managed to hunch around. Only with the arrival of the electric fence and a changed consciousness in Germany for the importance of childhood this form of child labor stopped here around 1965. The Black Forest Highlands Shepherd’s Trail follows the path of the shepherd boys along the high pastures. The stories of former shepherd boys leave their sign on the way. Other tracks in the terrain are more powerful: first, glaciers pushed rocks and formed valleys and lakes, then people worked on the ground: they cleared, plowed, planted, harvested, cultivated and set boundaries.
"Open your eyes" in the high black forests Premium hiking trails. Because on every way there is a stamp point in the form of a cuckoo clock. These offer the opportunity to document the hikes by stamp in the Hochschwarzwälder Wanderpass. Further information can be found at https:
For a subsequent retreat, the Schlehdorn Seehof, which is beautifully situated on the Windgfällweiher in the direction to Altglashütten.
Alternatively, on weekends and public holidays, the "am Wildenhof" in Raitenbuch offers a further refreshment opportunity.
We start our Tour on one of the loveliest hiking trails at Raitenbucher Höhe (1050 m above sea level), with a view of Raitenbuch and the Hochfirst peak to the north. The path, Wiesenweg, veers away from the road at the shed on the right. It alternates through woods and meadows, mainly downhill across sloped pastures, through the forest, sometimes where wild animals have their paths, and along the outskirts of the forest. Mighty spruce and pine trees rustle, and the young spruces are evidence of how the forest can spread when mountain farming is abandoned. After two km, the valley of Urseetal and the town of Lenzkirch come into view. The marsh, Urseemoor, is one of the most valuable marshes in the Black Forest Highlands. We begin our descent to the valley and, once there, take a left to Möslehof with its stunning array of flowers. After crossing the bridge over Stoffelbächle, a particularly pretty path begins. We walk along stone walls and offside Raitenbucher Straße, hiking uphill in the high forest until we get to Zinsmoos. Here a path follows a former village route connecting the mountain and Raitenbuch and takes us to the picnic area Alter Ahorn. The next relaxing section takes us further through the high forest of Sommerberg until a path veers to the left and we gain a new, summerside view of the Raitenbuch high valley. We proceed along Sonnenweg, under a roof of trees at the top of the mountain pasture. One last climb takes us past Luzenhäusle and back under the majestic spruce trees at the forest’s edge – who can find the holes made by woodpeckers? – all the way to the highest point in the hike. And it might be worth it to look back – we could be rewarded with a view of the Alps. It’s only 700 m to get back to the hikers’ parking lot, which takes us past the Wildenhof chapel.
We recommend sturdy shoes!
Due to pasture farming, please take dogs on a leash.
Planning and arrival
Raitenbucher Höhe parking lot
Take K4990, Raitenbucher Straße, from Lenzkirch to Altglashütten and drive to Raitenbucher Höhe; turn south at the chapel; parking lot for hikers after 200m