Spindler grew up near Hanover. He studied at the University of Freiburg, archeology, anthropology and medicine (PhD 1970). As a city archaeologist from Villingen in the Black Forest, he headed from 1970 to 1973 the excavations at Magdalene mountain, Hallstatt grave mound. From 1974 to 1977 he was the high school assistant at the Chair in Pre-and Early History of the University of Regensburg ( Habilitation 1977). From 1977 to 1988 Spindler worked as Scientific Council at the University of Erlangen- Nuremberg. In 1988 he moved to the University of Innsbruck, where he took the post of professor at the Institute of Prehistory and Early History and Medieval and Modern Archaeology. He was head of the Department of medieval and modern archeology.
Known to a wider audience Spindler was after September 1991, when the glacier mummy "Ötzi " was found in South Tyrol. He was the first who dated the glacier corpse approximate and filed. Prof. Dr. Spindler headed until 1998, the archaeological and archaeological and scientific studies of the mummy, and then she was transferred to Bolzano.
Spindler died in Innsbruck after long suffering of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Almost eight weeks earlier he had - already in a wheelchair - at an international conference on " Sky Disc of Nebra " in Halle ( Saale) referenced. He has published 35 monographs and more than 150 scientific papers on archaeological subjects from the Stone Age to modern times.
Writings (selection )
- With Gretel Gallay, Leonel Trindade, Octávio da Veiga Ferreira: O Monumento de pré - hiostórico Pai Mogo ( Lourinhã ). Associação dos arqueologos PortuguÃ, Lisboa 1973.
- The Magdalenenberg in Villingen - A prince grave hill of the 7th century BC. With contributions by André Billamboz and Gabriele Weber- Jenischhaus. Guide to archaeological monuments in Baden -Württemberg 5, 1976; 2nd Ed Theiss, Stuttgart 1998, ISBN 3-8062-1381- X.
- The early Celts. 1983; 3rd edition Reclam, Stuttgart 1996, ISBN 3-15-010369- X.
- The man in the ice. 1993; last Goldmann, Munich 2000, ISBN 3-442-12596-0.
- As publisher: Polish Pottery. The Feinsteinzeugfabrik Julius Paul & Sohn in Boleslawiec ( 1893-1945 ). Nearchos 8-10, Innsbruck 2002, ISBN 3-89790-168-4.
- Markus Egg: clothing and equipment of the glacier mummy from the Ötztal Alps ( monographs of the Roman-Germanic Central Museum Mainz band 77). Publishing Fast Steiner, Regensburg 2008, ISBN 978-3-7954-2141-0.