Brillenhöhle

Spectacle Cave - Glasses Cave - Pincers Cave


Useful Information

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The two holes looking like glasses, hence the name Brillenhöhle.
Location: 1km from Blaubeuren.
From Ulm: 16km west of Ulm, exit Blaubeurer Ring, follow the B28. At the railway station of Blaubeuren towards Schelklingen.
A8 exit Merklingen, follow signs to Blaubeuren. At the end of the tunnel turn right towards Schelklingen.
After 450m parking at the right side, 30min walk uphill to the cave. Alternatively drive to the end of Matthäus-Hipp-Weg, no parking, 20 minutes walk.
Open: Closed.
Open on the Tag des offenen Denkmals (Day of the open Monument, second Sunday in September).
[2020]
Fee: Free.
[2020]
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave KarstCollapsed Cave
Light: none, not necessary
Dimension: Ø=17m, H=4.5m, L=20m.
Guided tours:
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography: Eberhard Wagner (1979): Eiszeitjäger im Blaubeurer Tal, Führer zu archäologischen Denkmälern in Baden-Württemberg, Band 6, Karl Theiss 1979.
Address: Urgeschichtliches Museum, Kirchplatz 10, 89143 Blaubeuren, Tel: +49-7344-9669-90, Fax: +49-7344-9669-915. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
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Gate of the Brillenhöhle.

History

1906 sondage of Robert Rudolf Schmidt unsuccessful.
1911 Goessler mentions the finding of prehistoric shards.
1951 more finds.
1955 first excavations by Prof. Dr. Gustav Riek.
1963 last excavation by Prof. Dr. Gustav Riek.

Description

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Visitors must wear a helmet, danger of collapse.
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From the forecourt you have a good view of the Ach Valley.

The Brillenhöhle (spectacle cave) got its name from two spectacle-shaped hole in the cave ceiling. The cave consists essentially of a single room which has a has a diameter of 17m and is on average 4.50m high. In total the cave is only about 20m long. A small side cave is called Vesperhöhle and runs from Entrance portal of the spectacle cave about 5m far in eastern direction. It is 2.50m wide and 6m high. The spectacle cave is already in an advanced state of weathering and can certainly be described as cave ruins.

On the other hand, you can see the advantages of this cave for our introduce your ancestors well: The two large openings in the roof allow smoke and let in enough light. However, the room is so large that when it rains remain dry and thus offers a large number of people a excellent and comfortable weather protection.

One reaches the cave after a steep ascent from the end of the village of Blueberries. The entrance is located between rocks about 95m above the current bottom of the Eight Valley. So the cave was sealed during the ice age when the valley slopes were probably not forested like today, reasonably good attainable. But at the same time it offered a good view of the Blautal and so that the game that came to drink to the primeval Danube

The spectacle cave was built between 1951 and 1963 by Prof. Dr. Gustav Riek. In the process, countless remains of ice age hunters were found. The extensive finds from the Palaeolithic have provided a valuable Contribution to our knowledge of the hunting culture of Magdalene in Southern Germany. According to Prof. Riek the spectacle cave is one of the most important paleolithic stations in southern Germany. It excavated 22 filling layers, 19 of which were formed during the ice age. From the Aurignacian no human remains were found, but just animal bones that would indicate a bear hatch.

The main finds of the spectacle cave come from Magdalenia. Stone tools, fireplaces and shattered bones were found. A special feature are harpoons made of ivory or reindeer antlers with barbs on one or both sides. The animal bones come mainly from mammoth, wild horse, reindeer and Cave bear. This was obviously the prey of man. Crushed human skull fragments with burn marks were always is again considered evidence of cannibalism. According to Prof. Riek rubella powder is missing, which is considered evidence for head burials. Nevertheless, the cannibalism theory is highly controversial.

Unfortunately, archaeological excavations have revealed the excavated layers irreparably destroyed. So also in the Spectacled Cave many of the has been lost. And yet the cave still offers today's archaeologists field of activity, since some areas were at that time, due to apparent unproductiveness were left out. This is also the reason why the cave is now surrounded by a massive iron grating is protected against destruction by vandalism.

The cave can be easily seen from the gate, a visit, for example during a hike, is always worthwhile. The cave can be entered in the context of special events, which can be organised via the MiscUrgeschichtliche Museum (Museum of Prehistory) in Blaubeuren. So it is open on the Tag des offenen Denkmals (day of the open monument, second Sunday in September). The Höhlenwandertag on 01-MAY is unfortunately no longer held.