Burghöhle Dietfurt

Castle Cave at Dietfurt


Useful Information

Location: In Dietfurt. At the Danube, 5 km west of Sigmaringen.
(9°8'22"E, 48°4'40"N)
Open: After appointment.
[2021]
Fee:
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: none, bring electric torch.
Dimension: L=110 m, H=8 m, A=600m/610 m asl.
Guided tours:
Photography:  
Accessibility:  
Bibliography: Franz Josef Gietz (2001): Spätes Jungpaläolithikum und Mesolithikum in der Burghöhle Dietfurt an der oberen Donau, Konrad Theiss Verlag, Stuttgart, ISBN 3-8062-1570-7
Address: DRK Bergwacht Sigmaringen, Burgstraße 7, 72514 Inzigkofen-Dietfurt, Tel: +49-7571-61203.
Walther Paape, Tel: +49-172-9048114. 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.

History

1928-29 developed, paths and electric light.
1970 first celtic (Urnenfelderzeit), and medieval shards discovered.
1971 test excavations.
1972 Excavations by the Staatl. Amt für Denkmalpflege.
1973 Excavations by the Staatl. Amt für Denkmalpflege.
1974 Excavations by H. Reim.
1984 Excavations by the Staatl. Amt für Denkmalpflege.
1987 Excavations by the Staatl. Amt für Denkmalpflege.
1988 Excavations by the Staatl. Amt für Denkmalpflege.

Description

The Burghöhle Dietfurt is located in the rock below the castle Dietfurt. It is a through cave, going through the whole rock with a huge entrance at each side. The main passage is from one entrance to the other approximately 40 m long. Three big halls are connected by a narrow passage. The height difference betwen both entrances is 10 m which made some stairs necessary. The cave is well developed, had electric light for some time, but it was never a show cave.

The Burghöhle was developed by the Neutempler-Orden, an organization which owned the castle and the cave during the 1920s. The castle was called Ordensritterburg (order knight's castle) of the Neutempleisenerzpriorat Staufen. This organisation had an antisemitic attitude and published the magazine Ostara, which was read by Adolf Hitler. The original cave entrances were closed by walls, with only a small window. The three chambers were modified to a high degree. The biggest chamber was equipped with a chandelier and an altar, and used as a meeting hall. The members of the Neutempler-Orden held their congregations here.

The cave contains tertiary sediments. They are covered by a 1 m thick layer of flowstone, which is covered by a layer of limnic sediments from the Riß glacial. The Riß glacier blocked the valley of the Danube near Vilsingen, so a huge lake formed.

After World War II unknown treasure hunters searched the cave for a legendary treasure. This treasure was supposed to be a golden cone game. They left a big pit, 1 m wide, 4 m long and 5 m deep, and they destroyed prehistoric sediment layers along the way. In 1970 members of the Bergwacht Sigmaringen discovered celtic remains from a time locally called Urnenfelderzeit (Urnfield culture, 1300 BC – 750 BC). Other findings were from the early and high medieval. After this discovery the Staatliches Amt für Denkmalpflege (National Bureau of Monuments) made several excavations. They discovered remains from the Middle Stone Age, late Old Stone Age, and Magdalénien.

The Burghöhle is privately owned until today. The rescue base of the DRK Bergwacht Sigmaringen (Red Cross Mountain Rescue Service Sigmaringen) is located on the grounds and is staffed on weekends from spring to autumn. The mountain rescue service has the key and guides interested parties by appointment.