Steimel (Wirges) to Gabelstein
It's another warm morning. I start walking at around 05:00, already in shorts and shirt. The morning atmosphere is lovely as I make my way into Montabaur - a nice town but probably I won't remember for long. After Montabaur, the trail would go via Köppel. Since the observation tower is not opening until 10:00 I decide to do a short cut. Big mistake as I end up bush bashing and collecting ticks. It takes me up to an hour to remove all 30 or so. Hopefully, I didn't miss one.
The hike until Nassau is quite boring. Luckily, I remain within cooling beech forest for most of the hike. Eventually, the trail drops down into Nassau, where I grab a big ice cream. As it turns out, I'd need all the energy it contains:
The remaining 20 kilometers along the Lahn River are, after a level start, a constant up and down. Sometimes quite steep but technically never difficult. Only physically challenging. I find it interesting how I generally can squeeze out some extra energy when I need it. Like a booster.
All these climbs make me sweat like a bull. Twice do I need to ask locals for water.
The effort however is well worth it. It's an wonderful stretch of E1 in Germany. Quite rewarding. Especially when I arrive at the fantastic Gabelstein lookout, overlooking the river far below me.
I'm not sure yet if I will stay here to the next shelter, 500 meters away. This one here is exposed and with thunderstorms forecasted maybe not the smartest idea to spend the night. But for the moment I'll be staying, enjoying the sunset.