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Hiking in the Upper Engadine, early July or Sept?

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asn89
asn89
2 posts
new member
Jul 15, 2020 - 9:50 PM

Hello everyone,

So my wife and I are planning for 10-day hiking trip for next summer in the upper Engadine/Bernina Area. We’re planning to base in Pontresina since it’s close to the Bernina area. I was wondering if anyone has any experience hiking in that area since I have a couple of questions that I’m not able to figure out. Most important is we can’t decide on what would be the best month to travel. It seems that late July to August is peak season. I’ve read that late June to early July is beautiful for hiking with all the alpine flowers blooming but the snow may not have melted in some places especially in the high paths. September also seems nice as the weather should be more stable with less rain but wouldn’t it be colder for hiking? Honestly it seems that we’re between early July and September, would appreciate any advice.

Thanks!

Rail Europe
Ildiko
Ildiko
1018 posts
top member &
moderator
Jul 16, 2020 - 8:18 AM in reply to asn89

Hi Asn89 and welcome to MySwissAlps!

June is a bit early if you would like to hike on higher altitude. I prefer September, as it is not peak season anymore, but the weather is usually still good. Beginning and middle September is the best. You can read more about the seasons and months at www.myswissalps.com/besttimetovisit.

I recommend you this page to check about hiking in Switzerland: www.myswissalps.com/hiking.

Ildiko

Also check these:

Last modified on Jul 16, 2020 - 8:18 AM by Ildiko
1960man
1960man
2739 posts
top member
Jul 16, 2020 - 11:21 PM in reply to asn89

Being generally restricted to UK school holidays, I often visit Switzerland in mid-late August and have done plently of hiking in the Engadine.

Some points based on my experience:

1) if you end up going earlier (eg June) for hiking, there will be lots of hiking you can do at altitudes where the snow will be long gone.

2) related to above, lower altitude hiking with the high mountains constantly as backdrop can be just as beautiful as high altitude hiking, and often more 'relaxing'. For example there is a lovely level walk from Spinas, done the valley to Bever, then across to the side of the valley avoiding Samedan and round the hillside to the Muragl area, thence Pontresina.

3) A well know 'sport' is to walk between stations on the Rhatische Bahn railway. You can vary the length of hike depending on how you feel. With my wife we have done both 'further than originally planned' and less far then originally planned' - eg you can walk along the valley from Bever towards Scuol, and curtail your walk at any of the stations along the route. We did this once and went as far as Zuoz from Bever having only planned to walk as far as Madulain.

4) When hiking, you won't really notice any 'peak season'. It's not as if Swiss hiking paths are like central Manhattan! As I said above I often hike in Mid August and you can walk in many places without seeing huge numbers of other people

Anna
Anna
941 posts
top member &
moderator
Jul 17, 2020 - 6:15 AM

Hi asn89,

In addition to Ildiko's useful links and 1960man's helpful suggestions, the Engadin website also has plenty of information on hiking trails in the summer. www.engadin.ch/en/hiking/

Regards,

Anna

asn89
asn89
2 posts
new member
Jul 17, 2020 - 9:46 AM

Thanks guys for all the useful tips, really appreciate it! :)

Maloja Snake
Maloja Snake
73 posts
active member
Jul 18, 2020 - 8:17 AM

Hi, last summer I went twice, primarily for hiking around that region; The first trip was from June 15th for two weeks, and the second was the third week of August for two weeks.

In addition to all the expert advice you have received to your questions, I can offer the following. It is a beautiful region, and one of highest valley areas in Switzerland. My main base was Sils Maria, which is surrounded on either side by large lakes. There are wonderful hiking trails in all directions. The village and lakes are 6000' altitude, and that is at the base of the mountains surrounding it. Pontresina, and St. Moritz are similar. So on my first trip in June, only a few of lifts and gondolas were open until very late June or early July. My second trip was preferable, access wise, and nature wise regarding the trails. It also happened to be surprisingly uncrowded. I was told that the throngs of tourists who were there earlier, had just left.

Anna
Anna
941 posts
top member &
moderator
Jul 18, 2020 - 8:50 AM in reply to Maloja Snake

Thanks for sharing Maloja Snake!

Regards,

Anna

1960man
1960man
2739 posts
top member
Jul 19, 2020 - 11:25 PM

Ever since 'Maloja Snake' started posting on this forum I had the sneeky feeling they were fans of the upper Engadine... :-)

Last modified on Jul 19, 2020 - 11:25 PM by 1960man
Maloja Snake
Maloja Snake
73 posts
active member
Jul 20, 2020 - 12:49 AM

LOL; Thanks, I keep seeking appreciation for this under-appreciated region. And a reminder of my favorite locale of Sils Maria, the best webcam in the Alps that captures it all : sils.roundshot.com/

Annika
Annika
6343 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 20, 2020 - 7:04 AM in reply to Maloja Snake

Well, you have every right to promote this beautiful area Maloja Snake :-)! Thanks for sharing the webcam link: it's wonderful to enjoy the views near Sils this way.

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