Some excerpts from an article on a 2004 visit to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, in the Bavarian Alps. The full article will appear soon in Goworldtravel.com
... Our favorite spot was an outdoor table at a cafe just off the Zugspitzstrasse, from which we watched the daily parade – including one day, a parade. A procession of tractors and farm wagons moved heavily down the street from the countryside not far beyond - the aroma of spring barn-cleaning sometimes whiffed through the town - each bearing a yellow placard to protest a tunnel project.
If you can tear yourself away from the town, a required destination should be the Zugspitze, Germany’s highest mountain. It’s an emperor among crowned heads, dominating a skyscape of snow-covered peaks, wrapped in weathers of snow, ice and fog. Hotels offer summit forecasts each day so that you can choose a clear view across the icy rooftops of four nations.
A pass purchased at the Zugspitzbahn may be used on the train and the cogwheel train and/or the cable cars that serve the summit. The engine bearing the sky blue and white diamonds of Bavaria pulled cars crowded with skiers through the valley’s flat fields - with tiny barns and long-horned brown cows – past Reisersee and Hammersbach with onion-domed churches.
The landscape shifted from fields to pine forests, with small patches of flowers making an early appearance at the melting edge of snowdrifts. As the train crept and I focused close to the tracks, my seatmate gave me a nudge. Below, the intense blue waters of the Eibsee glowed like an opal in its setting of dark pine....
Click the link for a photo of me taken on the Zugspitze. I hate the cold, but the view (and a Williams schnapps) made the the experience unforgettable!