Hiking itinerary help

Hiking itinerary help

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1 post
new member
Feb 21, 2013 - 7:47 PM
Hi Everybody,

I need some help with my upcoming hiking trip. Last summer, my wife and I had a fantastic, self-planned, inn-to-inn hiking trip in the Bernese Oberland where we started in Meiringen and went on successive days to Grindelwald, Wengen, Murren, Griesalp and finished in Kandersteg. We loved it. This summer I am going back (with the buddies this time) and am trying to figure out where we should go from here. I would like to somehow tie into my existing route. This trip will also be 5 days of hiking. I want challenging hikes in high mountains, similar to the last trip. Here are 3 options I am considering.

1. continuing on from Kandersteg and ending up at Montreux at the French border. I'm a little worried that this won't measure up to last years trip for challenge, heights and scenery. Please give me your input.

2. starting somewhere in Eastern Switzerland on the Alpine Pass Route (via Alpina) and stringing together 5 days and ending up in Meiringen. Also worried this won't measure up.

3. This is what I really want to do :-) I want to start in Kandersteg, go across the Gemmi Pass to Leukerbad. Somehow hike from Leukerbad to Gruben (probably need 2 days to do this, need a good intermediate stopover) to St. Niklaus to Zermatt. I think this sounds the most thrilling and challenging but I can't find any place on the internet where people are going from Leukerbad by foot and then connecting with the Haute Route ending (probably near St. Luc?). Is this possible? Any suggestions?

I hope I haven't been too confusing. I guess what I am wanting to know are 2 things. 1. Are options 1 and 2 too boring and easy? 2. Is there a fun way (by foot) to go from Leukerbad and tie into the Haute Route?

I look forward to hearing from everyone!

4380 posts
expert &
Feb 24, 2013 - 7:52 AM
Welcome Brad! Well, if option 3 is your favourite: you can tie the Gemmipass route to the Haute Route, but this won't be the most spectacular leg of your hike. You'll have to descend to Leuk first, and then get up in one of the valleys on the southern side of the Rhone valley. Hiking all the way up at the ends of the Val d'Hérence or Val d'Anniviers for example would allow you to connect to the Haute Route near Arolla, Evolène or Grimentz. The Alps here are spectacular too, so you won't get bored one you're near the Haute Route.

As for the other options: it's hard to predict whether any other route can match your experience in the Bernese Alps. Some will say that this is simply the most stunning region in Switzerland. I don't know the remaining part of the Via Alpina from Kandersteg to Montreux myself, but you could explore these sections, described in detail, at Wanderland Schweiz. The very first sections of the Via Alpina in Graubünden may not live up to your expectations as these are legs at relatively low altitudes; however, if you pick up the trail at section 5 or 6 I think you'll love it: the scenery near Engelberg and Meiringen is great.
320 posts
top member
Feb 28, 2013 - 3:07 PM
>it's hard to predict whether any other route can match your experience in the Bernese Alps. Some will say that this is simply the most stunning region in Switzerland.<

Yep, pretty much so.

In 2009 we did the entire Via Alpina, Sargans to Montreux. The BO segment you did is the highlight (I'm partial to it, we've based out of Wengen 16 times) but the Sargans to Meiringen bit is very nice as well. I wouldn't go east of Gsteig again. Send me a PM if you'd like more info (like where we stayed, etc.)

Can't help with Gemmi to Zermatt, sorry.


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