• Niklas Kääb

Three Epic Roadbike Rides in the South of Munich

Hello everyone, and welcome back to another new concept. On my entire website, there is only a single blog about road cycling, despite the fact that road bikes are probably my most used type of bike. So I decided to change something about it, and would now like to present you with three of my favourite road cycling rounds in the south of Munich.


The Flat One

Riding flat and fast is great. So the main aim of this tour is to have it as flat and fast as long as possible. It starts with a long straight through the Perlacher Forst. This about four-kilometre long section is a favourite of the Munich cycling community. And on weekends it is overcrowded like you would expect from such a popular route. Despite that, it is, in my opinion, one of the best methods to get out of the city quickly. In my recorded track, I took a detour over the Forsthaus Wörnbrun, mainly because the straight road was closed due to construction works. But in the process, I also found it to be far less frequented.

After cycling through the town of Deisenhofen, you get to the next long straight, the Sauerlacher Straße. For most of the weekend cyclists, their tour concludes in a popular beer garden in Deisenhofen, so here it is already way less crowded. Here you have almost six kilometres of perfectly asphalted, car-free, straight as an arrow, almost flat, road to go all out on. There follow a few quick lefts and rights through the villages of Sauerlach, Otterlohn, Brunnthal, Hofolding and on last right turn in the town of Feistenhaar, and you are on the next straight and fast section.

Until you reach the town of Unterdarching, there are over twenty-eight kilometres of almost flat road waiting for you. Only after tunnelling below the highway A8, the hills begin to rise a little higher. But now you are barely a few kilometres away from the highest point of the tour, and while the profile indeed becomes a lot more hilly, the general tendency is a slight downhill.

The longest descent will come after the town od Sachsenkamm when you drop down into the Isar Valley on a steep and narrow road. From there it is only a short flat section until you reach the village Bairawies and the most challenging climb of the tour. 1.5 km and about seventy meters of elevation. From here on it is up and down again, until you reach the second-longest ascent, leading from Auhofen to Eulenschwang. Only to immediately drop back down into the Gleißental at the location of the Deininger Weiher. In case you would want to take a break during your tour, the restaurant at the shore of this little lake can actually be recommended. And my second recommended break spot is the Kugler Alm, the aforementioned famous beer garden in Deisenhofen. You reach this town shortly after climbing back out of the Gleißental, and as you are close to your goal, it would actually be the perfect moment to enjoy some nice food and drinks.



The Long One

The tour around Lake Starnberg is the longest one I would like to recommend today. As on all other routes, you start out at the Perlacher Forst, with the long straight towards Deisenhofen providing you with an opportunity for some warm-up sprints. After cycling through the town, however, we turn west and aim for the village Straßlach, on a tiny public road leading through the forest.

Here you can expect one of the steepest descents I know, down into the Isar Valley. You should be careful on this one, a few blind turns, as well as the road being only just wide enough for one car in places, can lead to some dangerous situations. After following the Isar upstream, we cross the river and ride through the famous monastery of Schäftlarn. What awaits us now is one of the best hill-climbs in the vicinity of Munich. Over four hairpin turns we ascend out of the Isar Valley, towards Hohenschäftlarn. The road stays at a low gradient, allowing you to keep a high speed uphill.

Afterwards, we aim for Irschenhausen, where we have a second, much shorter climb. From here on out the tendency is downhill again, until we reach the south shore of Lake Starnberg much later. This mix of long, almost flat downhill gradients, with intermittent short steep uphills, makes for some delightful high-speed riding. Supporting this fact is that the roads are relatively small, and not very congested with cars, at least until we cross through Münsing. Since the much smaller road through the village, if Deggendorf is currently closed for construction, we have no choice but to use a somewhat larger road, to get to Seeshaupt, at the southernmost point of the lake. In case you are looking to take a break somewhere, I would recommend Seeshaupt, as here you can find plenty of options with a view of the lake.

Now follows a twenty-kilometre long section with an uphill tendency, where each consecutive climb seems to be getting steeper and steeper until it all culminates in a 13% ramp after the village of Monatshausen. Shortly thereafter you also have to make a left turn on the biggest road of the tour, which of course means the most cars. You only have to stay on this road for about three hundred meters after which you are back on the next small road. Form here on out it is a nice mix of ups and downs, with one significant descent still in the waiting.

From Hanfeld to Leutstetten you ride downhill into the Würm Valley. You should be a little bit careful on this section, as the road is not in the best conditions. Still, it is a great place to tuck and let it roll. And you need at least some speed as right after you have to manage the last big climb of the tour until you meet up with the Olympiastraße. Form here on it is basically a long straight section, with one right turn till you reach Pullach and by extension the Großheselohe Bridge. Here is the only place where you can cross the Isar without any significant up- or downhill sections.

And now you only have a few minutes left, on the busy Isarhochufer Cycleway until you reach Munich again unless of course, you have a mind to try out another great beer garden and stop at the Menterschwaige. You would deserve it after such a long tour.



The Hilly One

The last tour I would like to recommend today, features a few more hill climbs compared to the other routes. Right away this is noticeable because we start in a slightly different place, and that is down in the Isar Valley, at the Munich Zoo. Immediately we have to push up one of my least favourite ascents to get into the Perlacher Forst. It is short, it is steep, and your muscles are still cold. Through the forest, we stay on the same straight we always use for this route until we reach Deisenhofen.

But now there is a twist. We follow a straight road next to the Gleißental until we reach the town of Kleindingharting, uphill from the Deininger Weiher. Here we have another short but steep climb, and then a long descent towards the Isar Valley. The climb up to Hohenschäftlarn is familiar, only this time we ride straight on into a long hilly section, with lots of up and downs.

This long stretch comes to a conclusion eventually, when we reach Leutstetten and climb up the hill towards Hanfeld. On a small and steep road, we have to climb again through some forest, but get rewarded immediately with a fast and narrow descent. Until we cross through Söcking, where we finally connect onto a larger road. There is a cycleway on the left side of the road, however, as this one is broken up in the towns, it only is usable going in an easterly direction. We, however, cycle westwards for now until we reach Perchting. Here the track crosses itself, and we take a right turn to have a long and fast descent towards Seefeld. Especially the last part, after a short uphill is steep and technical, and fun.

From Seefeld, it is only a short sprint until we reach Hersching am Ammersee. Here is an excellent opportunity for a break at the Seaside and to enjoy some sort of meal to strengthen ourselves. And we need this strength because we now have another long climb ahead, towards Andechs. The grade is very forgiving on this one, and averaging twenty kilometres an hour should be possible for strong riders. After reaching the top, we are now going eastwards and can therefore use the cycleway until we reach Perchting again.

From here on out it is only a short diversion, until we connect back to our track in Stöcking and now run the same route we had used before backwards, up to Hanfeld, down into the Würm Valley and up to Leutstetten. Here we separate again from the familiar track to climb up and connect with the Olympia Straße.

Now we only have a few kilometres of perfect time trial road ahead until we reach the city limits of Munich. To get to our starting point from here requires some riding through the town, on cycleways and roads. And of course, as on all tours, there is another beer garden right before our final destination.

The Naturfreunde Bootshaus Beer Garden is a real secret, even in Munich, but still great with great prices to boot. So one reason more to reward ourselves for the long tour we have just completed.

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