Lauterbrunnen - Rotstockhutte: in one afternoon?

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2 posts
new member
Aug 6, 2017 - 2:51 PM


My friend and I plan on hiking for 5 days during the first week of September 2017 and I wanted advice on whether our first day itinerary is realistic:

We are arriving in Lauterbrunnen on a train around 12:30pm.

We will take the cable car/train to Murren via Grüschalp, which takes 20 minutes and runs every 20 minutes, so hopefully we will make it to Murren by 1:30pm.

Then we plan to do the via ferrata to Gimmelwald, which I understands takes 2-3 hours, so hopefully we will arrive in Gimmelwald by 4:30.

Then we plan to hike to Rotstockhutte, which I understand is about 2.5 hours hike from Gimmelwald, so hopefully we will arrive at the hut in time for dinner at 7pm.

Does this sound realistic for the first day? My friend and I are both fit and experienced hikers. We can't really arrive in Lauterbrunnen any earlier. I'm mostly concerned that the hike from Gimmelwald to Rotstockhutte will take longer than expected, as I haven't been able to find any trip reports or info on the timing for this part of the hike (since it seems most people arrive via Murren). Or would you recommend hiking back to to Murren and reaching Rotstockhutte via that path that passes thru Schiltalp.

If the itinerary does seem doable, we will advise the hut that we won't be arriving until 7pm and hopefully they'll save some dinner for us.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

5559 posts
Aug 6, 2017 - 8:56 PM in reply to happyinti

Hi happyinti -

I've not done those hikes.

The usual walk from Mürren to Gimmelwald does not take 2-3 hours; it is only about 2 km on a reasonable trail.. I do not know the via Ferrata. And, there are frequent cable cars.

These maps may help.

The Switzerland mobility map goes right to Rotstockhütte if you use the name as a search term. yer=pk&resolution=1&la yers=Wanderland&E=2630 654&N=1154951

I note that the trail through the Rotstockh252tte as shown on that map is a heavy green line ( although dashed).

That means that you can get further information about that trail by clicking on the trail line.

If you do, you will learn that is a named National Trail, the via Alpina, stage 12. (The map sometimes responds slowly when searching. Be patient.)

Click on the small name tag, and you should get the window shown in the attached screen grab.

Click on "More Information."

You will get to a page with height profiles, hiking times ( for the whole stage) , etc., etc.

(Second Screen grab.)

The height profile shows that the climb from Mürren to Rotstockhütte is about 400 meters altitude change over about 7 km distance.

The other very detailed map that I sometimes use is SwissTopo: yer=ch.swisstopo.pixel karte-farbe&layers=ch.bav.ha ltestellen-oev, tlm3d-wanderwege&layers_visi bility=false,true&X=15 4951.92&Y=632064.49&zo om=6

I have turned on hiking trails. They follow the normal color conventions. Red means mountain trail. Blue is technical climbing, yellow is the easy kind that does not require any equipment..

I have not hiked cabin- to-cabin, but I understand that they need advance reservations during good hiking weather.

The timetable metable

will tell you that if you come by train from Interlaken Ost, you will arrive at Lauterbrunnen at 1225. That is an easy connection for the 1238 cable way to Grütschalp. you will get to Mürren by 1258. Next trip is at 1308, arrival at 1328.

You know better than I do about your hiking capabilites, but you could always ride to Gimmelwald instead of walking/hiking.


Last modified on Aug 6, 2017 - 9:01 PM by Slowpoke
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2 posts
new member
Aug 7, 2017 - 8:02 AM

Hi, Thanks so much for your reply, that was really helpful. On the topos I was using, the hike from Gimmelwald goes thru Firten, but on the Switzerland mobility map you sent, we can actually join back up with the part of the Via Alpina trail that goes from Murren - Rotstockhutte without having to backtrack to Murren.

The via ferrata (Klettersteig) from Murren - Gimmelwald is only 2.2 km but it takes 2 - 3 hours because it traverses the top of the cliff via a series of cables and ladders. It's definitely the slowest route option between Murren and Gimmelwald, but worth taking the time to do if you like expansive exposed views =)

Thanks for the tip about booking the huts. We've made reservations at Rotstockhutte, Gspaltenhornhutte and Frundenhutte, and also a stop at the hotel in Oeschinensee Lake hotel, and are looking forward to a nice few days of hiking. I hope to have a nice trip report for you when we get back!

5559 posts
Aug 7, 2017 - 2:10 PM in reply to happyinti

Hi happyinti-

Glad I could help. You are much more experienced than I in the kind of hike that you plan, but it never hurts to look at up to date topos.

SwissTopo has a free smartphone app., and, you are probably aware that their paper topos are very good. /

look under products and applications. You'll find paper topos at sporting goods stores, train stations and convenience stores; that is especially true in Alpine areas. There are very very few real bookstores left in Switzerland, but Barth Bücherei in Züri Hauptbahnhof has a good set of paper topos of several types.

<<"The via ferrata (Klettersteig) from Murren - Gimmelwald is only 2.2 km but it takes 2 - 3 hours because it traverses the top of the cliff via a series of cables and ladders.">>

In fact, I did find it once I expanded the maps. Looks like fun. For you. ofor me...unfortunately, my knees are troublesome.

Hope you have good weather. That should be a great few days of hiking.

And, indeed, when you get back if you can post a trip report in that part of the forum, it will be appreciated. You might check there, or search a few names in this website, to see if anyone has reported recently on that part of the via Alpina.


Last modified on Aug 7, 2017 - 4:46 PM by Slowpoke

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