The Wetterstein limestone is a hard rock with a high lime content. It was formed under tropical conditions in the Tethys Sea about 230 million years ago.
In shallower parts of the sea, reefs began to grow. These white reefs gave rise to the white, light-colored Wetterstein limestone, in which rounded pieces of coral may be enclosed. The Wetterstein limestone forms massive, smooth wall formations with relatively few rubble slopes.
The Karwendel, the Zugspitze, the Tannheimer Berge, the Säuling summit and the more than 10 km long Heiterwand northeast of the Hahntennjoch are made of this rock.