April 06 2008:
And so… back in Germany again and not content with having blasted my knees and thighs the last time, I foolishly decide that climbing the steeple of the Cathedral Church (fixed) at Ulm might be a good idea again – this time accompanied by Edward the Corgi. Apparently time not only heals wounds, it conceals stupidity from those who should ought to notice.
For those who have never been, the Cathedral church at Ulm is possessed of the highest steeple of any church anywhere. It is also a bit of a fitness challenge, since one can climb to within about 80 feet of the pinnacle via a series of twisting corkscrew stair cases – 786 steps in all. I don’t care who you are, climbing 503 feet is as good a cardiovascular workout as you will ever experience. The last 100 feet or so to the tiny balcony surrounding the steeple peak is via a central stair case which is not only open to the elements it is nerve wrackingly narrow – not for those with a minor fear of heights.
However, should you wish to skip the whole climbing bit, a tour of the church itself is not without it’s attractions. It is currently undergoing some considerable repair work, but this is mainly confined to the exterior and does not mar the interior.
To get there:
via car from Greding: Join the A9 south towards Munich, take exit 64 onto the B300 towards Augsburg. Approximately 60km SW towards the A8. Join the A8 just east of Augsburg, continue west on the A8 towards Stuttgart. Take B10 south towards Ulm, about 12km follow signs for ‘stadtmitte’. The parkhaus am Rathaus is quite close and cost 2euro for about 3hours parking on a Sunday.