Braunlage is not the most interesting bikepark in the Harz, but when you’re already there it’s worth a visit. They have made an effort to build nice mountain bike trails and a lot of northshores, but sadly the mountain is not steep at all. Which means you have to keep pushing to keep your speed up, so it’s a relaxed day for your brakes, but you will not find a lot of steep or technical challenges.
But at the same time there isn’t a route that is very suitable for beginners.
The lift is slow and expensive and you have to pay for the parking and bike wash too.
Maybe I’m being a bit negative here, but I just had a lot more fun in Hahnenklee and Schulenberg.
In the Harz there is a large network of signposted routes for XC riders. Scroll down for more info.
Mountain biking in Braunlage
- Long trails
- Trails with different characters
- Touristy city, a lot to do if you don’t want to ride a bike
- A lot of options for XC riders
- Slow expensive lift
- No options for beginners
Braunlage is one of the bigger cities in the Harz national park , with everything a tourist might need. The history of Braunlage goes back to at least 1253 and it’s officially classified as a Luftkurort (clean air health resort).
Since the Wurmberg is the second highest mountain in the Harz it’s very popular with people who want to enjoy the view, so it can be busy at the lift, usually in the afternoon, but you don’t notice this when you are riding down the trail.
Hotels and apartments
There is a camping a couple of minutes outside Braunlage, in a quiet forest setting. Hot showers are included and there is wifi near the reception area.
There are two starting platforms, for platform 1 leave the lift building and go left, you can see this platform from the lift.
Freeride This is the track you see on your left when you are riding up in the gondola. The start is the steepest part of the mountain with a dropbox, after this turn right and cross the road. In the top part there are a couple of northshores of varying difficulty and a roadgap. Then it’s a fast trail with some jumps and a wallride to the middle station.
Downhill After the steep part go left through the field, there are a couple of small gap jumps and a mix of big slabby rocks and roots in the forest and wooden walkways that will be slippery when wet.
The Freeride and Downhill come together near the halfway station of the lift, from there there is a fast flowing trail to the bottom station or you can go left to the northshore and dirt lines.
For platform 2 go over the top of the mountain to the backside, here you will find:
Endurotrail/Singletrail A lot of roots, you have to keep your momentum otherwise it’s not fun. But otherwise there is no difficulty.
Downhill (schwer) There is no warming up in this trail, you have to work hard from the start. The only option is to commit and bounce from rock to rock with speed or maybe you’re a trials rider and you roll and hop over each rock individually, there is no in between. After that it is like most old school racetracks, worn out, wide and fast with a couple of big jumps.
The trails in the forest are slippery when wet, the trails in the open fields will quickly become dusty with loose gravel in the sun. Both conditions will make the trails more challenging, for most riders this will be a good thing.
Xc routes Braunlage
There are 74 signposted cross-country mountain bike routes in the Harz, 4 of those start in Braunlage, click this link to check them out.
Riding your bike is allowed on almost all hiking trails, except for a couple of trails that are very popular with hikers. Please respect this, that way we will keep access to all the other trails. So just look at the map and go.
Do you have any other cool XC or enduro tracks around Braunlage? Please let us know in the comments below.
Books and maps
This book describes the same routes that are on the Volksbank Arena website. It can be handy if you want to take the map and the description with you, although the layout of the book isn’t great.
These maps describe mountainbike trails around Braunlage.
The GPS tracks for the signposted routes can be downloaded here
Bike shops/ guiding/ Mountainbike rental
It was possible to rent bikes from zweirad-busche on the parking, but they have closed for 2019, if you have any more info on renting mountainbikes for bikepark Braunlage please let us know.
(they are still opened at bikepark st. Andreasberg)
Tips and tricks
The parking is expensive (5 EUR/day) so if it’s possible leave your car at the hotel and ride your bike to the lift.
You enter the lift building with your bike on the right hand side, not through the main entrance.
Every couple of gondola’s there a special basket for the bikes, fill the basket with four bikes when there is a line of people waiting behind you. Maybe you want to ride in the lift with your friends, but your bike doesn’t care.
The lift crew at the top will take your bike out of the basket.
They do not sell a day ticket, but tickets for 5, 10 or 20 rides per person, you can not share the ticket with your friends and it stays valid for the entire summer.
Most people will do 10 rides per day, if you’re slow and there is a long line for the lift 5 will be better. I don’t think it’s possible to do 20 in a day, because the lift is so slow.
Season: June to fall, depending on snow conditions.
Schulenberg Cool tracks and an even cooler vibe and hot sausage from the grill, you don’t want to miss this.
St Andreasberg too bad the mountain isn’t bigger, the tracks are awesome, but short. It’s more suitable for beginners than Braunlage.
Thale just one track and a slow lift, not very exciting.
Hahnenklee More and longer trails and better suitable for beginners.
Off course bikepark Braunlage has a lot of elements that you will find in a lot of other mountainbike destinations, but I can’t think of a location that is very similar. Not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing?
Do you have any suggestions? Please leave a comment below.