High above Zierenberg, Germany, you can find a watchtower on the 460 meters high mountain Schreckenberg. In medieval times the Schreckenbergturm was used to watch out for enemies and to spark a fire to warn the inhabitants of the city underneath. Later it deteriorated but in 1911 the tower was restored and opened to the public as a wonderful viewpoint. The more than 15 meters high tower is today owned and maintained by the Hessisch-Waldeckische Gebirgs- und Heimatverein (HWGH).
The tower is open around the clock and all year. The first steps are around the building but after some meters, you can get inside and climb on metal and wooden ladders up to the top. It is one of the most narrow towers I’ve ever climbed and the ladders are definitely a one-way street – but they felt safe even on a rainy day. From the top of the tower, you can enjoy nice views on the trees surrounding it and also to mountains like the Dörnberg, the Burghasunger Berg and the Großer Bärenberg.
As you are already there take a look at the blue stones (‘Blaue Steine‘) underneath: it is an area that is covered by small grey stones of volcanic origin. Dependent on the light this former magma has a light blue gleam. This natural basalt stone garden has a very special atmosphere and you can walk on small paths through it.
If you want to reach the Schreckenbergturm there are different parking areas from which you can hike there. The closest is next to the public pool in Zierenberg but from there you’ll have to walk steadily up the steep mountain. If you would like a little less inclination then park your car at the Wanderparkplatz Dörnberg, the entry point to the Alpenpfad walking path around the Dörnberg. Reaching the Schreckenbergturm is also possible by public transport: you can take RegioTram 4 (RT4) from Kassel Hbf or Regionalbahn 4 (RB 4) from Kassel-Wilhelmshöhe, they’ll both bring you to the Zierenberg railway station from where it is a pleasant walk to the foot of mount Schreckenberg.