It is summer time in Switzerland, and the best time of the year to hike in the Alps and mountains. This time I’ll share with you our journey around the Glattalpsee (Lake Glattalp). Expect stunning views of Swiss mountains, flora, fauna and curious critters:
The map below shows our tour: Taking the gondola from the Sali up to the Glattalphütte, hiking up to the Grossbodenkreuz and Pass, finding a way along the Glattalpfirst, then down to the Glattalpsee, strolling around the lake and then back to the gondola station and down back to Sali. Duration around 4-5 hours.
The Glattalp is one of the coldest places in Switzerland (usually below -30°C, with a record of -52.5°C in 1991). The lake is used for electricity production, and the small gondola up to the lake is operated by the electricity company and open to the public (but expect long waiting time, as there is only one small gondola).
The gondola with space for up to 8 passengers:
The gondola will take us 700 meter up there:
View back to the Sali lake:
View to the Waldisee Falls:
View back to the Waldisee and the Alpler Horn in the back:
On the right the hiking trail up to the Glattalp:
Getting closer to the first stop:
View from the top station:
Alpine hiking trails below. The valley is Karst area, and the presence of a lake is rather unusual, as the water dissolves the rock and creates a subterranean drainage. That’s the reason why the lake has no natural exit.
Passing the Glattalp Alpine (SAC) hut which is a starting point for many hikes.
Heading to the left (north) side of the valley. Passing a sign post. Usually they are about 2.5 meter high, but that one is about 5 meter: that way you still see it with all the snow:
Passing on the left the Glattalp Chapel:
White-Red-White marks tell us we are on the right track:
The Karst creates a very special and interesting landscape:
Between the rocks, areas with alpine meadows, created after the last ice age more than 10000 years ago:
The Grossbodenkreuz (cross on the right) is in reach:
Nearby is the Grossbodenkreuz Pass at 2056 meter:
On the pass, a nice welcome from a small Steimannli (stone man):
The Grossbodenkreuz is just a few metes above at 2072 meter:
With stunning views:
View to the Glattalpsee
View to the Rigi and Lake Zug:
Grossbodenkreuz Pass nearby:
Down below in the valley the Charetalphüttli in the valley of Charetalp:
We are leaving the official hiking trail and following a trail on the Charetalpfirst to the East, a trail on the rim between the two valleys:
With a little critter representing some part of the fauna:
After about 1 km, descending again back into the Glattalp valley to reach the lake:
Crossing beautiful alpine meadows …
… and small creeks, with Gross Chilchberg (2426 m), Höch Turm (2665 m) und Ortsstock (2520 m) and Schijen (2608 m) in the background:
And I missed to mention another species common in this area:
Passing by a small waterfall:
And yet another species:
These hiking companions always wanted to know what’s going on:
Approaching the lake, yet another species:
In a peaceful coexistence as it seems:
Approaching the lake:
Faced another lake guardian:
Followed the road on the north shore of the lake:
Crossing one of the creeks feeding the lake:
At the end of the lake, yet another sign post which reminds us how high the snow in winter time is:
Concrete tries to prevent water from draining into the Karst:
Stone guards again:
On the other side of the lake we took the trail back to the gondola station.
View on the lake:
Crossing what has been left from winter and avalanches:
Views around the lake:
Taking a bath would have been very refreshing I think:
More Fauna …
and Flora, featuring the Blue Enzian:
Approaching the gondola station …
… and heading back down to the Sali, with a last view back to the Glattalp:
Of course we could have taken the hiking trail down to Sali too:
But taking the Gondola was much faster and more convenient :-).
That was a beautiful summer mountain hike, and I hope you enjoyed the ride (or the pictures).
Happy Glattalping 🙂
- Luftseilbahn EBS Glattalp: https://ebs.swiss/glattalp/
- Glattalp SAC Hütte: http://www.glattalphuette.ch
Erich, just a fantastic set of photos. Wishing I could get back to Europe again.
Thanks. There are many wonderful places in the world….
Great stuff! Thanks!
Heading to Scotland in a few weeks. Hope to do some hiking including Ben Nevis.
Scotland must be a beautiful place too, it is on my list to go for a very long time. Enjoy your hiking trips!
Pingback: Hiking around Waldisee and Salisee | MCU on Eclipse