Lighter (victory)

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Lighter in flood in Betzdorf

Lighter in flood in Betzdorf

Water code EN : 2722
location Rothaar Mountains

Siegerland (natural area)


River system Rhine
Drain over Victory  → Rhine  → North Sea
source in the Rothaargebirge at Donnerhain near Würgendorf
50 ° 46 ′ 50 ″  N , 8 ° 8 ′ 36 ″  E
Source height approx.  490  m above sea level NHN
muzzle near Betzdorf in the Sieg Coordinates: 50 ° 47 ′ 22 ″  N , 7 ° 52 ′ 18 ″  E 50 ° 47 ′ 22 ″  N , 7 ° 52 ′ 18 ″  E
Mouth height approx.  190  m above sea level NHN
Height difference approx. 300 m
Bottom slope approx. 9.9 ‰
length 30.2 km
Catchment area 204.231 km²
Discharge at the Alsdorf
A Eo gauge : 196.5 km²
NNQ (07/23/1971)
MNQ 1957–2007
MQ 1957–2007
Mq 1957–2007
MHQ 1957–2007
HHQ (02/07/1984)
30 l / s
400 l / s
3.72 m³ / s
18.9 l / (s km²)
50.9 m³ / s
154 m³ / s
The Heller near Burbach

The Heller near Burbach

The Heller near Betzdorf

The Heller near Betzdorf

The Heller is a 30.2 km long southeast and orographically left tributary of the Sieg in Hesse , North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate ( Germany ).

Its catchment area is 204.231 km². Apart from the headwaters of the main rivers, this area largely coincides with that of the Hellerbergland , the southernmost part of the natural Siegerland on the northern roof of the Hohe Westerwald . Already on June 24th 1350 the Heller was mentioned in a document as "Helre".




The Heller river arises in the western part of Hesse, in the Lahn-Dill district , not far east of the border with North Rhine-Westphalia, on the saddle between 560.7  m above sea level. NHN high Donnerhain in the west and the approximately 578  m high Sinnerhöfchen in the east. Both peaks belong to the Kalteiche massif , the most south-westerly foothill of the Rothaargebirge , the main peak of which is north of the source. The Sinnerhöfchen lies on the Lahn-Sieg watershed, i. H. Streams rising immediately to the east already drain over the Dill to the Lahn .

The source area of the Heller is located in the "Haiger State Forest" about 2.5 km north of the commercial and industrial area "Haiger-Kalteiche", which is northwest of Haiger , not far northeast of the North Rhine-Westphalian Würgendorf ( Siegen-Wittgenstein district ), an eastern one District of Burbach . Immediately at the headwaters, which is around 490  m above sea level, there is one of several intersection points between the B 54 and the A 45 , which are connected a little further south via the “Haiger-Burbach” junction.

Upper course

Initially, the Heller flows roughly parallel to the border between North Rhine-Westphalia and Hesse through the south of the Kalteiche massif to the south, to cross the border to North Rhine-Westphalia at 430  m on the northeastern outskirts of Würgendorf , bend to the west and thus the middle To enter Hellertal , which, contrary to its name, begins clearly in the upper reaches. To the left, and thus roughly south of the river, it is from now on accompanied by the southern Hellerbergland up to 616.9  m high with the Lipper Nürr, and on the right by the Kalteiche massif.

Middle course

The Heller on the northern outskirts of Burbach

From then on, the Heller flows through the so-called Freie Grund in first westerly to south-westerly, later in north-westerly directions through the south of the Siegerland from Würgendorf via the core town of Burbach to the Wahlbach district , where the Buchheller flows into it from the left . It finally reaches Neunkirchen , where the Mittlere Hellertal as well as the Freie Grund expands east to north-east to the Wildebach coming from there .

Lower course and mouth

When the Wildebach flows into Neunkirchen, the Heller turns back in westerly and initially even south-westerly directions. To the right of the river valley, from now on, the northern Hellerbergland rises , which is also known by the name of its highest elevation, the around 517  m high windcock .

After 16.59 km Heller transgresses the border to Rhineland-Palatinate , where the district Altenkirchen places Herdorf , Grünebach and, with the confluence of its largest tributary Daade from left, Alsdorf reached. Above Betz village it eventually reaches the Niederschelden-Betzdorfer Siegtal to the nucleus to about 190  m height from the left in the coming from the northeast victory to open . Their water flow reaches around 3.8 m³ / s on average


The tributaries of the Heller include - viewed downstream:

Surname page Length


( km² )
(m above sea  level )
DGKZ Places with flow
(* estuary)
Siegenbach right 0.81 00.76 414  m 2722-132 Würgendorf *
Höhbörnchen Left 1.12 - 400  m - Würgendorf *
Stream soap right 2.27 01.84 390  m 2722-14 -
inflow Left 1.58 - 373  m 2722-152 Burbach (industry)
inflow right 1.25 - 373  m - -
Ginnerbach Left 2.21 02.51 355  m 2722-16 Burbach *
Burbach Left 4.10 03.24 352  m 2722-18 Burbach *
Buchheller Left 8.93 14.38 325  m 2722-29 Lippe , Burbach *
Gilsbach right 4.34 07.25 310  m 2722-32 Gilsbach , Wahlbach *
Mischebach Left 5.68 07.41 296  m 2722-4 Wiederstein *
Ballenbach right 1.27 - 290  m - -
Volkersbach right 3.21 05.35 285  m 2722-52 -
Wildebach right 11.67 30.72 257  m 2722-6 Wilden , Salchendorf , Neunkirchen *
Seelbach Left 4.59 05.95 254  m 2722-72 Altenseelbach , Neunkirchen *
Daadenbach Left 3.05 03.02 248  m 2722-732 Altenseelbach, Struthütten *
Dermbach right 2.28 08.49 240  m 2722-74 Dermbach , Struthütten *
Sottersbach Left 6.07 08.00 238  m 2722-76 Herdorf *
inflow right 1.97 - 220  m - -
Hohlgrünebach right 2.54 02.31 200  m 2722-78 Grünebach *
Daade Left 16.03 53.28 196  m 2722-8 Emmerzhausen , Daaden , Schutzbach , Alsdorf *
Steinrother Bach Left 3.70 05.75 189  m 2722-929 Alsdorf *
Imhäuserbach right 4.96 05.05 188  m 2722-94 Offhausen , Herkersdorf , Alsdorf *


The localities on the Heller (direct jetty in italics ) from the source to the mouth include:


Characteristic for the Hellerbergland are deeply cut valleys of the Heller and their tributaries and a thick forest with deciduous forest in the valleys and spruce forests at high altitudes. The highest mountain in this landscape, at 616.9  m , is Lipper Nürr , located on the border to the south-west of Burbach.

The settlements of the Hellertal continue along the Wildebach with the village of Wilden and the Daade , where the larger village of Daaden is located.

The catchment area of ​​the Elbbach connects to the southwest of the Heller, to the northeast that of the Eisernbach and to the east that of the Dill and its tributary Haigerbach . The source areas of Daade and Buchheller , which are already in the High Westerwald , are bordered by that of the Nister in the south .

Worth seeing

From the Pfannenberg Tower , which is located in the northern Hellerbergland on the Pfannenberg south of Eiserfeld (southern district of Siegen ), you can, for example, overlook large parts of the Hellertal. Also worth seeing is the Druidenstein in the Rhineland-Palatinate part of the same ridge .

The approximately 39 km long Hellerhöhenweg leads over the mountains south of the Hellertal (signpost "H"), which connects Haiger via Burbach -Lippe with Betzdorf, for example over the Mahlscheid mountain .

Transport links

The Hellertal can be reached via the federal roads branching off from federal roads 62 (in the west) and 54 in the east . The Betzdorf – Haiger railway runs through the river valley .

References and comments

  1. a b Topographic map 1: 25,000
  2. a b c d e f g Topographical Information Management, Cologne District Government, Department GEObasis NRW ( information )
  3. Measurement data: gauge Alsdorf / waters: Heller. (No longer available online.) State Office for the Environment, archived from the original ; accessed on April 14, 2018 .
  4. ^ Siegener Urkundenbuch Volume I, Siegen , 1887, pp. 201–204, No. 332.
  5. MQ value based on the entire catchment area (rounded off)
  6. North Rhine-Westphalia 3D. The interactive map version 1.5
  7. Map service of the landscape information system of the Rhineland-Palatinate nature conservation administration (LANIS map) ( notes )
  8. For a better overview and sorting downstream, a hyphen has been inserted for each river in the water code number (GKZ) after the number “2722”, which stands for the Heller .