The Granite Trail

Exploring the Waldviertel on 153 kilometers of MTB trails

As part of the Lower Austrian Alpine Tour, the 153-kilometer-long Granite Trail takes you in three stages from the Waldviertel to the Danube, with an elevation gain of 3,020 meters. The Granite Trail begins in the far-north of Austria at the Czech border in Gmünd and proceeds via Gross Gerungs, Bärnkopf, Gutenbrunn and Altenmarkt to Persenbeug.

The formidable name implies that you have to have muscles of granite to negotiate the ascents along this trail. That is not completely true, at least as far as the first of the three stages is concerned. The descriptor “granite” actually refers to the granite rock so common to northwest Lower Austria.

Stage 1 of the Granite Trail

The elevation gain of 850 meters in stage 1 is distributed comfortably over about 60 kilometers. The gently rolling hills carved out of granite over millions of years and the extensive forests in the Waldviertel dominate throughout this “beginner’s stage” of the Alpine Tour.

Link to the interactive map - Granite Trail, stage 1

Stage 2 of the Granite Trail

The second stage covers about 46 kilometers and takes you toward the sun through a quiet landscape of forests and meadows. In this area, the Waldviertel shows that it definitely has swing. The beats vary in a vivacious operetta of small villages, forest clearings and dark pine forests and are matched by your even, easy-going pedal strokes.

Link to the interactive map - Granite Trail, stage 2

Stage 3 of the Granite Trail

Everything seems to flow and blur into each other seamlessly along the 46 kilometers of stage 3 of the Granite Trail – the forests into the fields, the all-dominant green into the blue, blue sky, the burbling of the Ysper into the buzz of the meadows.

Link to the interactive map - Granite Trail, stage 3