In the footsteps of miners: An educational trail starting from the St. Ignaz mining gallery (1.500 m) to Croce della Val Rossa/Rötkreuz (2.080 m) that passes entrances to mine and the dilapidated remnants of former mining works.
The Saint George tunnel (adit), which turns towards the right from the road and leads you directly into the mountain was built soon after 1528. Although it is no more than 100 metres long, ore was only found at the beginning of the 40’s, as at times, there was only one miner working in this tunnel. Near the ‘Jakober Stuben’, which are the remains of former mine buildings near the entrance (‘Mundloch’) to the Saint Jacob’s tunnel, the upper part of the mine begins. This is the part, where ore was found during the 15th Century. It is said that Prettau copper ore was first found during the Bronze Age. If this is true, it was most likely found here in this mine. At some stage, there were several tunnels leading into the mountain, but only a few of them can be seen today. The most upper tunnel was called Saint Wilhelm. This was the ‘treasure chest’ of the mine, i.e. copper ore was first found here. The wild and romantic landscape between the ‘Jakober Stuben’ and the Saint Wilhelm tunnel did not grow naturally, but was created by man. This happened during the 18th Century, when the ore was partly mined with the help of black powder. The educational trail ends at the Rötkreuz (2,080 m).
|Altitude||1515 m / 2062 m|
Copper Mine in Prettau: From the Saint Ignaz mine (1,500 m) to the Rötkreuz (2,080 m) - along the ‘Mundlöcher’, the remains of former mine buildings.
Walking time approx. 3 1/2 h
Brunico-Bruneck - Predoi-Prettau 38 km