Lauterbrunnen May 16-25th, walking trails open?

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Ness
Ness
5 posts
new member
Apr 18, 2019 - 7:23 PM

We will be in Lauterbrunnen for 10 days, May 16-25th. We want to do easy hikes in the area and are interested in First to Bachalpsee as well as Wengernalp to Kleine Scheidegg. I’ve read on this forum not to count on any hikes above 2000 meters until mid June. I know you don’t have a crystal ball to foresee the future, but does anyone know if the winter has been mild or cold with a lot of snow.? Just wondering if we have any likelihood of walking these trails. Any other easy suggestions if you think they will be closed?

Annika
Annika
5095 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 19, 2019 - 10:44 AM in reply to Ness

Hello Ness. I'm afraid it's too early to tell whether you have a chance to hike these routes. Generally I'd say your travel dates are too early. But winter hasn't been that cold (although there was quite some snow, especially in Eastern Switzerland), and if spring continues to be mild to warm (as it is now), the trails might clear as soon as mid-May. The local tourist offices will be able to tell you which trails are accessible once you're there. It's wise to have some back-up plans at lower altitudes. You'll find suggestions at myswissalps.com/jungfr auregion/activities (scroll down a bit). The Lauterbrunnen valley floor is beautiful, and I expect Mürren-Grütschalp to be possible during your stay.

kim11
kim11
462 posts
top member
Apr 19, 2019 - 4:46 PM

Great advice from Annika.

Here's more input on late spring walks:

Spring does not come early to the Bernese Oberland. Many of the higher elevation hikes are often closed by snow and/or mud until mid-June. During heavy or late snow years some of these trails don’t open until July 1. The earliest the higher elevation hikes open are when the transports to reach the trailheads are scheduled to begin operating. However, sometimes the trails don’t open for days or weeks later, it is entirely weather- and snowpack-dependent.

However, there are a number of lower elevation hikes that are usually open during April, May, and early June. These are all easy walks; the more challenging hikes are those higher up.

A beautiful valley walk begins in Lauterbrunnen and ends in Stechelberg (or earlier, depending on your inclination). It is about 4 miles long on a wide flat path. You can go as far as Trümmelbach Falls (about half way and highly recommended for a visit) then bus the rest of the way, go as far as the Stechelberg Schilthornbahn station, about 3.5 miles total, or go all the way to Stechelberg where there is a lovely inn that serves delicious lunches. You can take the bus back from any of these stops to Lauterbrunnen.

The only walk at elevation that's pretty sure to be open is the Grütschalp to Mürren route. Take the cable train from Lauterbrunnen to Grütshcalp then enjoy the 3.5 mile, mostly flat stroll to Mürren. Stunning views of the Eiger massif from here. You can also walk from Mürren down the paved easy trail to Gimmelwald then catch the gondola down to Stechelberg.

The Allmenhubel lift (from Mürren up to Allmendhubel) generally opens the end of the first week of June, walks in that area may be open that early or maybe not, entirely depending on snow levels. schilthorn.ch/en/Angeb ot/Timetable__Tariffs/ Timetable

The gondola from Wengen to Männlichen (where one begins the easy walk down to Kleine Scheidegg) is scheduled to begin operating again on 11 May, but often the trail is obscured by snow or mud until mid June. If it is closed it is still well worth taking the gondola trip and walking around the top.

The ski gondolas from Grindelwald to First is now operating contiuously from 24 November 2018 until 27 October 2019. The path to the lovely lake usually doesn’t open until end of May but even if it is closed the trip up and back on the gondolas is breathtaking!

There is also a lovely easy walk along the river (starting in Lauterbrunnen) called the "Natur und Bahn" trail. You pick it up right behind (east) of the train station and follow it as far as you want. It runs to Wilderswil via Zweilütschinen, each of those segments is around 3 miles. You can catch the train back to Lauterbrunnen at either spot.

There are a number of loop trails around Wengen that are usually open before mid-June as well. The tourist information center in town can direct you to these.

Ness
Ness
5 posts
new member
Apr 19, 2019 - 5:15 PM

Annika and Kim, Thank you for your time and advice. We were married in Murren(church)/Lauterbrunnen(civil) ceremonies 25 years ago this September so this is an early celebration for us. We are looking forward to hopefully seeing some spring wildflowers and new hikes. Your advice is most appreciated!

Annika
Annika
5095 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 20, 2019 - 7:01 AM in reply to Ness

How wonderful that you got married in these towns! I hope you'll enjoy your trip back to the Jungfrau region and that you get to create beautiful new memories.

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