Höhbeck-Elbholz Trail

Through beaver and white-tailed eagle country

The Höhbeck, a “geest” island 76 m high, was created during the Ice Ages. Until the water pumping station was built in Restorf in the 1950s, the Höhbeck became a true island again during every large flood.

From the observation tower near the Schwedenschanze wall there is an impressive view into the vast landscape and the home of the white-tailed eagle. For years, the Kaffeegarten Schwedenschanze has attracted visitors and is a favorite spot for a break. In addition, the Höhbeck is unique location in northern Germany for prehistoric excavations. The museum in Vietze and the Woodhenge Window into the Past near Restorf provide more extensive information.

The trail leaves the Höhbeck at the Seege river dike near Brünkendorf and continues toward Restorf through the Seege lowlands, past Lasche, and into the Gartow Forest. It passes through Gartow am See where half-timbered houses line the main shopping street. At the dam, the trail arrives at Lake Gartow, an artificial lake, 67 hectares in size, created in 1974. Along the dike, the trail continues toward the Gartow castle and the baroque St. George’s church. The castle and large tracts of land surrounding Gartow have belonged to the von Bernstorff family since 1694.

At the castle, the trail crosses the beaver path. Lake Gartow, like the Seege and Elbe rivers, provides a habitat for these comical animals.

At the parking lot for the Canoe Station, the trail turns toward Elbholz — a natural riverside woodland. At the Elbholz boulevard lined with oaks that are centuries old, you’ll find an observation platform for birdwatching. At the tiny settlement at the Elbe dike, the trail arrives at the Elbe river and follows the dike to the Höhbeck.