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Ruins Koppenstein

3. Stage

Ascend the steep paths to the Koppenstein and immerse yourself in the beech forests of the Großer Soon mountain.

After following the eastern bank of the stream for a short distance, the trail makes a steep ascent of 275 m on scree slopes into the Niederwald forest, passing quartzite rocks, before stopping first at the edge of the former Gehlweiler quarry. It then continues across the jagged rocky ridge. The strenuous ascent ends at the upper edge of Henau quarry. You have now reached the Großer Soon, the middle part of the Soonwald. From here you can see south as far as Kyrburg Castle, near Kirn.

The trail stays on the northern side of the quartzite ridge as far as the ruins of Koppenstein Castle (539 m). The castle's keep can be climbed and makes a great viewing tower. The trail then continues from the northern ridge of the Großer Soon to the Mittlerer Soon. The Asbach Valley, which separates the two mountains, is crossed on a wooden bridge.

Alteburg Castle (620 m), with its stone tower, located on the most southwesterly summit of the central ridge, is the next viewing point. Beech and spruce forests and raspberry bushes define the landscape along the broad crest of the Großer Soon. This part of the trail runs on a narrow path parallel to the Rennweg path, which leads straight through the forest. Only a few hundred metres from the trail, in a park-like forest belonging to Eschen nature reserve, rare orchids grow underneath ancient trees. The Sponheimer Weg, a historical theme trail, turns off to the nature reserve. After the round fir tree, you reach the end of the stage, the hikers' car park at Ellerspring, on the L108 (Tiefenbach-Winterbach).