Take a Hike

by Donald Seltzer


– The Kaiserslautern Sunny Coyotes club has opened up seats to non-members for their Bastogne, Belgium, bus trip. The Dec. 13 trip will allow participants to join in the celebration of the 70th Anniversary of Bastogne’s liberation, to include a Defensive Perimeter walk on trails of 7, 13, or 22 km. Reservations must be made by Dec. 4. More information, to include club membership, may be obtained via e-mail at info@sunny-coyote.de.

– It’s not too late to make plans to join the Ramstein Roadrunners at their annual Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot event. What better way to work up an appetite for the day’s big meal than with a walk on their 5- or 10-km trails. Consider making reservations to enjoy the Thanksgiving buffet at the Officers’ Club on Ramstein Air Base. Spend a night or two in guest lodging — contact Central Reservations at 06371-454920 to find out if Space-A rooms are available.

– The calendar for volksmarching in Germany, Terminliste 2015, is available for €3 in the start hall at most events. This useful booklet lists dates, locations, points of contact and other information for each of the scheduled events in Germany. Also provided is an extensive list of permanent trails. Kaiserslautern- and Spangdahlem-area wanderers may also want to pick up the 2015 volksmarching calendars for France, Luxembourg, or Belgium; some or all of these may be available from the DVV Awards Officer when present at an event.

– Interested in volksmarching but not sure how things work? Send an email message to volksmarch@gmail.com with the subject “Getting Started KA.”

– Got a comment? Found something you’d like to correct? Want to change ‘unknown’ to a useful trail description? Write me at volksmarch@gmail.com with the subject “Feedback KA.”

– Many thanks to readers Pat and Cheryl Patterson, Barbara MacDonald, Johnette Scott, Lew Harrison, James Meredith, and Dale Robinson for providing event brochures.

– Take a moment to grab a set of brochures from the Werber table and send them via no-cost MPS to Donald Seltzer, PSC 2 Box 10684, APO AE 09012.

– The postal code is included in the listings for readers using navigation devices. Autobahn exit numbers are being added for those without such devices.

– Would you like to receive Take a Hike at the same time as the newspaper editor? The complete, unedited version of the monthly volksmarching feature is available in its original Word document format by sending an email message to volksmarch@gmail.com with ‘Subscribe KA’ in the subject line.


Hüttigweiler (66557) — This Nikolauswanderung event is southwest of Baumholder and north of Saarbrücken in the Saarland area. From the KMC, use Autobahns 6 and 8 toward Saarlouis and Autobahn 1 toward Trier. Exit at Illingen (142) and take secondary roads through Hosterhof to reach Hüttigweiler. From the Baumholder area, use Autobahn 62 toward Trier. Connect with Autobahn 1 toward Saarbrücken and exit at Illingen (142) to follow the same minor roads to the start.
Start: Illtalhalle on Pfarrstraße (at Verzy-Platz)
Saturday and Sunday: 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. (5, 10 and 20 km)
Trails: Unknown
Award: From previous events.

Staudernheim (55568) — This event, about a 50-minute drive from Baumholder and an hour from the KMC, reminds wanderers that Christmas is fast approaching as it offers a Nikolaus-Wanderung. From Baumholder, head to Idar-Oberstein to pick up B-41 toward Bad Kreuznach. At Bad Sobernheim, connect with a minor road to the start at Staudernheim. From the KMC, use Autobahns 6 toward Mannheim and 63 toward Mainz. Exit at Winnweiler (13) and pick up B-48 north toward Rockenhausen. Connect with B-420 at Alsenz-Obermoschel, then at Obermoschel use secondary roads through Lettweiler to the start at Staudenheim.
Start: Turnhalle at the Sportplatz
Saturday and Sunday: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. (5, 10 and 15 km)
Trail: Hills and fields
Award: None.


Bockenau (55595) — This event is due west of Bad Kreuznach on the year-round, permanent Hunsrück trail system. FFrom Baumholder, use the minor road bordering the training area to reach B-420. Head toward Bad Kreuznach to connect with B-270 toward Idar-Oberstein and B-41 through Kirn to Waldböckelheim. A minor road will lead to Bockenau.
Start: Bockenauer-Schweiz-Halle on Waldböckelheimer Straße
Sunday: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (5 and 10 km)
Trail: Fairly hilly, woods
Award: None.

Erstein, France (67150) — This late afternoon and evening event is south of Strasbourg and northwest of the former Canadian airbase at Lahr, Germany. It’s way too far (almost 2.5 hours from Kaiserslautern) but some of KMC’s volksmarchers will make a day out of it with visits to Strasbourg, Lahr, Baden-Baden, Bad Dürkheim, etc. Make note that the start and end points are in different locations; participants will walk a bit back to their car. From the KMC, use A-6 toward Mannheim, A-61 south toward Karlsruhe, and A-65 toward Landau. Exit at Kandel-Süd (22) to follow B-9 to the border and connect with French Autoroute A35 toward Strasbourg. You’ll merge onto A4 briefly but continue southbound on A35 to use exit 6 toward Offenburg/Illkirch-Graffenstaden. Follow secondary roads past Fegersheim to the start at Erstein.
Start: Salle St Martin, Maison des Oeuvres at 9, quai du Convent (Finish is Salle Hérinstein at rue du Vieux Marché)
Saturday: 3-7:30 p.m. (10 km)
Trail: Unknown
Award: None.

Hamm, Luxembourg (L-9068) — This event is at Hamm, a town on the eastern edge of Luxembourg city. It’s a 95-minute drive from the KMC. From the KMC, use Autobahns 6 toward Saarbrücken; 62, 1, and 602 to Trier; and 64 to the border. Continue on A1 in Luxembourg, then take exit 7 to pick up N2 and CR225 to the start.
Start: Hall omnisports
Sunday: 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. (5 and 10 km)
Trail: Unknown
Award: None.

Metz, France (F-57050) — A hugely-popular Saturday-only evening walk offers wanderers a tour of this historic city with many of its monuments and buildings illuminated; the trail also passes through a Christmas market. Go early to avoid crowds or later to enjoy the lights; dress warmly regardless. This event is well worth the time to reach it. West of Saarbrücken, this walk is easily reached via autobahn. Use German Autobahn 6 past Kaiserslautern, Ramstein and Landstuhl toward Saarbrücken; cross the border into France where the autobahn becomes A4/E50. As you approach Metz, follow signs toward Stade Saint-Symphorien and watch carefully for Metz Illuminée directional signs.
Start: Complexe Sportif on Boulevard Saint Symphorien
Saturday: 2-6 p.m. (10 km)
Trail: Flat, city streets
Award: None
Note: The highway between Germany’s border and Metz is a toll road. An Esso station is located at a rest stop on the eastbound side (direction Kaiserslautern/Mannheim) of A-6 near Homburg/Saar (just past exit 9).


Luxembourg-Limpertsberg, Luxembourg (L-1750) — A few years ago, this event was recommended by volksmarching enthusiast Kay Garsnett who especially enjoys “…December volksmarches that combine St. Nick or Christmas celebrations.” Last year, this writer participated in the event and can second Kay’s thoughts. This Saturday-only walk has its trails passing by the town’s Christmas market. It’s a long drive from the KMC (about 90 minutes) but, if you’ve got the time and the weather is nice, should be a worthwhile trip. From the KMC, use Autobahn 6 toward Saarbrücken. At Kreuz Neunkirchen connect with A-8 toward Luxembourg and continue across the border where it becomes A13. At the Croix de Bettembourg interchange, take A3 toward Luxembourg. Just past the Croix de Gasperich, the autobahn ends at a roundabout; take the second exit onto B3. Use N3, N50, N57, Boulevard Royal, N52, Avenue Victor Hugo, Square Edouard Andre and Rue Jean-Baptiste Fresez. Watch for IVV signs leading to the start at Limpertsberg.
Start: Hall Victor Hugo at 60 Avenue Victor Hugo
Saturday: 1-5 p.m. (6 and 12 km)
Trail: Hilly in places, passing by the Christmas Market
Award: None.


Beringen, Luxembourg (L-7590) — This Sunday event, north of Luxembourg City, is about two hours from Kaiserslautern. From the KMC, use Autobahns 6, 62, 1, and 602 toward Trier, then 64 to the Luxembourg border. Continue across the border on Autoroute A1 to the Potaschbierg exit (13). Connect with secondary roads N1, N14, N11, and N14 to Larochette, then pick up D119 and D118 to Berschbach. Use D123 to the start at Beringen.
Start: Hal Irbicht on rue Irbicht
Sunday: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. (6 and 11 km) and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. (16 km)
Trail: Unknown
Award: None.


Bretzenheim/Nahe (55559) — This event is just up the road from Bad Kreuznach in the direction of Bingen. You’ll enjoy the walk as long as you watch for the trail markings — it’s easy to make a wrong turn here. From Bad Kreuznach take B-48 north to Bretzenheim. From the KMC, use Autobahns 6 toward Mannheim, 63 toward Mainz, and 61 toward Koblenz. Exit at Bad Kreuznach (51) and pick up B-41 in the direction of Idar-Oberstein. Take the B-48 exit toward Bretzenheim and follow IVV signs to the start.
Start: Kronenberghalle on Winzenheimer Straße
Saturday and Sunday: 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (5 and 10 km) and 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. (15 km)
Trail: Somewhat hilly, vineyards
Award: None.

Leudelange, Luxembourg (L-3361) — This event brings volksmarchers southwest of Luxembourg City on the first Sunday of the new year. It’s a long drive from the KMC (about 1 hour 45 minutes) but should be easily done using autobahns. From the KMC, use Autobahns 6 and 8 past Saarbrücken, Saarlouis and Merzig to the border at Perl. After crossing into Luxembourg, continue west on Autoroute A13 to connect with the A4 toward Luxembourg City. Use the Leudelange Sud exit (2) and follow secondary roads to the start.
Start: Hall Omnisports at 7, place des Martyrs
Sunday: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. (5 and 10 km) and 8 a.m. to noon (15 km)
Trail: Unknown
Award: None.


Eppelborn (66571) — This event is due north of Saarbrücken and easily reached by autobahn from the Kaiserslautern Military Community. From Baumholder, head south to pick up A-62 in the direction of Neubrücke and Trier. Connect with A-1 southbound toward Saarbrücken and exit at Eppelborn (141). Follow IVV directional signs to the start. From the KMC, Autobahns 6 and 1 toward Saarbrücken. Exit at Eppelborn (141) and follow the IVV signs.
Start: Realschule on Hellbergstraße
Saturday: 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. (6 and 10 km)
Sunday: 7:30 a.m. to noon (6 and 10 km)
Trail: Unknown
Award: None.

(For more events in your area, visit www.wiesbaden.army.mil/hunion/Takeahike.htm.)