Tillingen and Donaueschingen, meets the Swiss border on the hill “Hoher Randen”. On that hill, farmsteads are scarce, also inns are practically absent. The pilgrim is well-advised to carry the provisions in the knapsack. The last places on the German side are the country town of Blumberg (10’000 inhabitants), known for its “Sauschwänzlebahn” (pigtail railway) and the village of Fützen at the foot of the Randen. Blumberg and Schaffhausen are 17 km apart (as the crow flies) and are connected by a bus line of the Regional Transport Company of Schaffhausen. Both from Blumberg and from Fützen, there are roads to the Klausenhof (Randenhof). This farmstead is 30 minutes north of the Swiss border. On foot from Fützen to the border on the Hoher Randen takes one and a half hour (320m difference in altitude, and 4 km). On the Swiss side, the places from where to start the climb to the Hoher Randen are he „Neckar-Baar Jakobsweg“, coming from the area of the Neckar river and leading via Rottweil, VBeggingen and Bargen. Both can be reached by bus from Schaffhausen. The ascent from Beggingen in the Klettgau is shorter, but steeper (1 hr 20 min, 360m difference in altitude), than that from Bargen. The “green border”, lying at an altitude of 900m and situated in a wood, can be crossed without problem, the customs barrier is always open.
The route takes the pilgrims from the Swiss border through hilly terrain first to the nearby Munot town of Schaffhausen, where the “Thurgauer Klosterweg” begins. It leads through a landscape characterized by rivers and hills through neat villages and small towns, to the commandery of the Knights of St. John in Tobel. The name “Thurgauer Klosterweg” has its origin in the numerous former monasteries, churches and chapels that lie along the route and that are important in the history of art. These incite the pilgrims to rest and hold communion with oneself. Along the way, they will meet with an industrious and open-minded rural population. Its (German) dialect is a challenge at first, but soon, helped by the exquisite apple wine, rings pleasantly in the ear. On big parts of the way, the route follows authentic historical traffic routes. Bar a few exceptions, it follows Swiss hiking routes marked in yellow on the fingerposts. A special marking as “Klosterweg” does not yet exist. Pilgrims are recommended to observe the instructions and the corresponding trail maps. Tobel lies on the Swiss Way of St. James (Swabian Route) coming from Constance and leading via Rapperswil to Einsiedeln.
The itinerary of the Way of St. James from Randen/Schaffhausen through the canton Thurgau to Tobel is described in an abbreviated form. The descriptions were edited and checked by helpers and association members in voluntary work after travelling the route themselves, and based on the situation as encountered. The accuracy of the contents and especially the concordance with the markings of the “Schweizer Wanderwege” cannot be guaranteed by the association “jakobsweg.ch” and the authors, also not in the sense of a product liability. In case of discrepancies, pilgrims are therefore asked to follow in any case the official yellow fingerposts of the “Schweizer Wanderwege”, and to advise us of such errors. Thank you.
Texts: Winfried Erbach, Joe Weber and Otto Dudle (manuscript reader) Translated from German by Hans Bamert Pictures: Wolfgang Hörer, Winfried Erbach and others.