Hiking on the hay figure trail (c)TVB Annaberg-Lungötz

Hay figure trail: hiking pleasure for young and old

Do you already know Almliesl, the funny cow? Of course you know Donald Duck and Goofy. But what about the Elf Throne or the GaudiGolf-Haserl? Well, all of them have something in common: they are large and fragrant with the scent of summer on the hayfield.

How did the haymaking trail come into being?

Every year on the first Sunday in September, the HeuART festival takes place in the Lammertal. In 2021, Annaberg will once again host the world’s largest hay figure parade. For this purpose, clubs, businesses and individuals are busy for a long time before to build large, fun and beautiful creations from the material hay and other natural materials. These will then be presented to the numerous visitors in a parade on HayART Sunday, on magnificently decked-out horse-drawn carriages and lovingly restored vintage tractors. And after the feast? Since many of these elaborate figures simply disappear in barns out of sight and eked out an existence. Annaberg-Lungötz has decided to give the figures a home. Therefore, since then, they can be admired on the Hay Figure Trail on an easy hike during the summer and autumn months.

The GaudiGolf Haserl invites you to a game (c)Sylvia Schober
On the ziach sledge through the forest (c)Sylvia Schober
Seflie with Goofy (c)Sylvia Schober

Easy hike for all

The hike starts from the Kopfbergbahn parking lot in the center of Annaberg. We turn left on the main road, passing the Martini Sportswear store and the Gasthof Postwirt. After the Hauser bakery, turn right uphill, following the sign “Heimatmuseum”. A short, somewhat steeper climb on the asphalted road now follows until the path turns into a forest road up to the right in front of the Gererhof memorial farm. There you can already see the first hay figure standing: The dwarf musicians, made by hay artist Anita Höll, together with the traditional music band Russbach “plays” the hikers funny.

Dwarf music at the hay figure path scaled
Dwarf music at the hay figure path (c)Sylvia Schober

Of well-thought figures and hungry little mouths

The past harsh winters have been hard on many figures, some have completely disappeared under the masses of snow and, unfortunately, completely broken. These have now been replaced, and a different work of art can be admired at almost every turn. Like the musicians, as of this year, most of the characters have a strong, protective roof over their heads (or whatever else there is to cover). But – what must I see on my last walk? “Speedy Gonzales” does not wave cheerfully to the hiker as usual – sadly and a little ashamedly he stands there, in his underpants, so to speak! What had happened? Calves grazing along the first part of the path here – while still waiting for his new roof including fencing unprotected – simply found him “to bite”. Fortunately, there are always some hardworking landlords who agree to renovate the hayride year after year. In the next few days, “Speedy” will get a new outfit again.

On the way on the hay figure trail annaberg
On the way on the hay figure trail annaberg
On the way on the hay figure trail annaberg

Hiking further is possible here

In the upper part of the path, in a clearing, you can admire several figures. A true collection of artfully crafted treasures. There is so much ingenuity and work put into the characters here! But on this course you can also find another attraction: here is a GaudiGolf station. Similar to minigolf, GaudiGolf combines fun and games during an easy hike around the Kopfberg. Individual stations now meet us again and again, in between again beautiful hay figures.

Hay figure and GaudiGolf Station scaled
Hay figure “fire engine” of the FF St. Martin and the GaudiGolf station “cheese plate” from the Rottenhofhütte (c)Sylvia Schober

After a leisurely hour, the path branches off – either left towards the Salzburger Dolomitenhof with a magnificent view of the Gosaukamm. Here is also a small hayART gallery with various hay figures on a square. Also here is the starting point and club distribution for the GaudiGolf. On the right, continue in the direction of Kopflackenmann. From there it is possible to hike back down to Annaberg on an alpine path. This part is not suitable for strollers. If you still feel like it, you can continue here, towards Jausenstation Harreit, from where you get a wonderful view of the valley. Shortly before Harreit, a trail (not suitable for strollers) branches off up to the summit of Kopfberg. The path leads over 200 stairs, at the top awaits the hiker a beautiful statue, carved from fragrant pine wood. It depicts the patron saint of the village, St. Anna, who welcomes the hiker up here in the silence of the forest. A wonderful place in the silence of the forest, thoughts are accompanied only by birdsong. From here you can return along the same path or you can finish the loop along the well-signposted path via Alpendorf until you return to the hay figure path downhill.

Worthwhile excursion tip hay figure trail

The hay figure trail is an entertaining hike on an easy forest trail for the whole family. Due to the protective leafy roof, it is also worth a visit if it rains a bit – on the other hand, the forest also protects from quite a lot of sun. Refreshment stops are available at the beginning and end of the trail. The walking time up from the village is a comfortable hour, after all, the individual figures want to be looked at. It may happen that some figures after a few years no longer look so fresh – or taste too good voracious sweet tooth or cows :). These are replaced or refurbished by volunteers at the beginning of each hiking season. Please understand that we may be working on a station or Speedy may be getting new pants. The hike is easy, fun and I can really recommend it to everyone. See you soon in Annaberg-Lungötz.

Almliesl on the hay figure path scaled
Almliesl on the hay figure path (c)Sylvia Schober

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