Alpine Pass Route

The Alpine Pass Route is a long-distance hiking trail through the Alps in Switzerland, part of the Via Alpina route. It starts in Sargans in eastern Switzerland, and crosses the heart of country westwards to finish in Montreux on the shore of Lake Geneva. The total route covers over 325 kilometres (202 mi) and crosses 16 mountain passes, and takes 15 or more walking days to complete.[1]

The route

There are a number of variations on the precise route, but the following stages are fairly standard:[1]

The central portion of the route through the Berner Oberland is the most spectacular, with many hikers choosing to hike a few passes rather than the whole route in one go. The excellent transport connections give many possibilities for breaking it up.[1]

Signposting

The signposting along the route is excellent, with countless signs, markers and arrows. Most of the signs carry the name of the next pass or town, but increasingly the green square "Via Alpina" signs are being introduced. This route is now called route number 1 of a collection of long-distance walking routes.

References

  1. ^ a b c Reynolds, Kev (2011). "Trek 10 - Alpine Pass Route". Trekking in the Alps. Cicerone. pp. 124–135. ISBN 978 1 85284 600 8.

External links

Adelboden

Adelboden is a mountain village and a municipality in Switzerland, located in the Frutigen-Niedersimmental administrative district in the Bernese Highlands.

Bunderchrinde Pass

The Bunderchrinde Pass is a mountain pass of the Bernese Alps. The pass crosses the col between the peaks of Gross Lohner and Chlyne Lohner, at an elevation of 2,385 m (7,825 ft).The pass is traversed by a hiking track, which connects Kandersteg, at an elevation of 1,174 m (3,852 ft) in the valley of the Kander river, with Adelboden, at an elevation of 1,350 m (4,430 ft) in the valley of the Engstlige river. The track forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux.

Chlyne Lohner

The Chlyne Lohner (also spelled Klein Lohner) is a mountain of the Bernese Alps, located between the valleys of Adelboden and Kandersteg.The Chlyne Lohner lies to the north of the Gross Lohner, from which it is separated by the Bunderchrinde Pass, which provides a hiking route between Adelboden and Kandersteg.

Col des Mosses

Col des Mosses (altitude 1445 m) is a mountain pass in the western Bernese Alps of Switzerland. The pass is located in the municipality of Ormont-Dessous in the canton of Vaud. It links Aigle, to the south in the valley of the Rhone, with Château-d'Œx, to the north in the valley of the Sarine, and is flanked to the west by the Mont d'Or and to the east by the Pic Chaussy.

Elm, Switzerland

Elm (Romansh: Dialma ) is a village, and former municipality, in the municipality of Glarus Süd and canton of Glarus in Switzerland. Elm lies in the valley of the Sernf river, and consists of the village of Elm itself, and the hamlets of Sulzbach, Schwändi, Müsli, Untertal, Vogelsang, Töniberg, Obmoos, Steinibach and Wald.

Foo Pass

The Foo Pass (German: Foopass) is a mountain pass of the Glarus Alps, located on the border between the Swiss cantons of St. Gallen and Glarus, at an elevation of 2,223 m (7,293 ft). It crosses the col between the peaks of Foostock and Piz Sardona.The pass is traversed by a trail, which connects the village of Weisstannen, in the canton of St. Gallen at an elevation of 1,004 m (3,294 ft), with the village of Elm, in the canton of Glarus at an elevation of 977 m (3,205 ft). The trail forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux.The alpine pasture below the pass on the St Gallen side is notable for its marmot colony.

Foostock

The Foostock, also known as the Ruchen, is a mountain of the Glarus Alps, located on the border between the Swiss cantons of Glarus and St. Gallen. It lies north of Piz Sardona, on the range that separates the Sernftal from the Weisstannental.The Foostock lies between two passes that carry hiking trails between the cantons of St. Gallen and Glarus. The Foo Pass lies to the south of the Foostock and carries a trail from Weisstannen in St. Gallen to Elm in Glarus, forming part of the Alpine Pass Route between Sargans to Montreux. The less well known Riseten Pass lies to the north of the Foostock and links Weisstannen with Matt in Glarus.

Grosse Scheidegg

The Grosse Scheidegg is a mountain pass in the Bernese Alps of Switzerland, The pass crosses the col between the Schwarzhorn and the Wetterhorn mountains at an elevation of 1,962 m (6,437 ft).The pass is traversed by a road connecting the town of Meiringen, at an elevation of 595 m (1,952 ft), with the village of Grindelwald, at an elevation of 1,034 m (3,392 ft). The road is closed to most traffic, but is used by a PostBus Switzerland service from Grindelwald to the summit of the pass, with some buses continuing to Meiringen. Bus services operate between May and October, with between four and ten buses a day depending on time of year and section of the route. Hiking over the pass is popular, and it forms part of the cross-country Alpine Pass Route between Sargans and Montreux.From the Meiringen side, the approach to the pass runs through the valley of the Reichenbach stream above the Reichenbach Falls, best known as the place of the last fight between Holmes and Moriarty. The falls can be visited from the pass road, or by using the Reichenbachfall Funicular from the valley bottom.The Berghotel, a restaurant and hotel, is situated at the summit of the Grosse Scheidegg.Prior to the coming of the railways and the introduction of tourism to the area, the Grosse Scheidegg provided access for local livestock and dairy farmers to the important export route to Italy over the Grimsel Pass. With the coming of the railways, the importance of the pass as a trade route disappeared, and the pass never achieved the level of tourist visitors achieved by its neighbour, the Kleine Scheidegg.

Hahnenmoos Pass

The Hahnenmoos Pass (German: Hahnenmoospass) is a mountain pass of the Bernese Alps. The pass crosses the col between the peaks of Regenboldshorn and Albristhorn, at an elevation of 1,950 m (6,400 ft). The Hahnenmoos Pass is the lowest pass between the Engstligental, to the east, and the upper Simmental, to the west.The pass is traversed by a hiking track, which connects Adelboden, at an elevation of 1,350 m (4,430 ft) in the Engstligental, with Lenk, at an elevation of 1,068 m (3,504 ft) in the Simmental. The track forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux. Although a road leads to the pass from Adelboden, the pass can not be traversed by car.In winter the pass is part of a ski area. The Berghotel Hahnenmoospass is a hotel and restaurant that is located at the summit of the pass and is open in both summer and winter.

Hausstock

The Hausstock is a mountain in the Glarus Alps, at an elevation of 3,158 m (10,361 ft) on the border between the cantons of Glarus and Graubünden. It overlooks the valleys of Linth and Sernf rivers in Glarus, and the valley of the Vorderrhein river in Graubünden. The Hausstock was the site of the 1799 withdrawal of the Russian army under General Alexander Suvorov. A well-known destination already in the nineteenth century with British and American climbers, the mountain remains popular with mountain climbers and skiers.

Hohtürli

The Hohtürli (Swiss German, literally means High Little Door) is a high Alpine hiking pass of the Bernese Alps. The pass crosses the col between the peaks of Wildi Frau and Dündenhorn, at an elevation of 2,778 m (9,114 ft).The pass is traversed by a hiking track, which connects the hamlet of Griesalp, at an elevation of 1,408 m (4,619 ft) in the upper Kiental south of Reichenbach im Kandertal, at the entrance of the Kiental, with Kandersteg, at an elevation of 1,174 m (3,852 ft) in the valley of the Kander, the Kandertal. The track forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux, and the Hohtürli is the highest pass crossed by that route.

Joch Pass

The Joch Pass (German: Jochpass) is a mountain pass of the Uri Alps, located between the Bernese Oberland and Central Switzerland, at the foot of the Titlis. The pass crosses the col between the peaks of Graustock and Jochstock, at an elevation of 2,207 m (7,241 ft) and at the border between the cantons of Bern and Nidwalden.The pass is traversed by a mule track, now used by hikers and mountain bikers, which connects the town of Engelberg, in the canton of Obwalden and at an elevation of 1,000 m (3,300 ft), with the town of Meiringen, in the canton of Bern and at an elevation of 595 m (1,952 ft). The track forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux.

Klausen Pass

Klausen Pass (German: Klausenpass; elevation: 1,948 metres or 6,391 feet) is a high mountain pass in the Swiss Alps connecting Altdorf in the canton of Uri with Linthal in the canton of Glarus. Somewhat unusually, the boundary between the two cantons does not lie at the summit of the pass, but some 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) down the slope towards Linthal, with the summit being in Uri.The Klausen Pass is crossed by a paved road, which has a length, between Altdorf and Linthal, of 46 kilometres (29 mi). The road approaches the summit from Altdorf via the Schächen Valley communities of Bürglen, Spiringen and Unterschächen, and descends to Linthal via the Urnerboden. The road is normally closed between October and May, due to the high snowfall on the pass. During the open period, a PostBus Switzerland service crosses the pass several times a day, connecting Fluelen station, on the Gothard railway and Lake Lucerne, with Linthal station, the terminus of the railway line through Glarus.At the top of the pass is a historic chapel, the Bruder-Klaus-Kapelle, whilst 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) to the west side of, and 100 metres (330 ft) below, the summit is the Hotel Passhohe.

As well as being a popular route for cyclists and motorcyclists, the Klausenpass also forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland. However the hiking trail approaches the pass from both sides using a route different to that of the road.

Kleine Scheidegg

The Kleine Scheidegg (English: Little Scheidegg) is a mountain pass at an elevation of 2,061 m (6,762 ft), situated below and between the Eiger and Lauberhorn peaks in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland. The name means "minor watershed", even though it is actually higher than the neighbouring Grosse Scheidegg. Possibly this is because Kleine Scheidegg is a watershed between the two arms of the Lütschine river, while Grosse Scheidegg divides the Lütschine from the Rychenbach stream.The pass is traversed by a walking trail and the Wengernalp railway, which both connect the villages of Grindelwald with Lauterbrunnen, passing through Wengen between the pass summit and Lauterbrunnen. In winter, Kleine Scheidegg is the centre of the ski area around Grindelwald and Wengen. In summer, it is a popular hiking destination, and is one of the passes crossed by the Alpine Pass Route between Sargans and Montreux. The Jungfrau Marathon, a mountain race that takes place every year in early September, ends at Kleine Scheidegg.The Kleine Scheidegg railway station is sited at the summit of the pass. Besides being an intermediate stop on the Wengernalp railway, the station is also the lower terminus of the Jungfrau railway, which climbs steeply through tunnels inside the Eiger and Mönch mountains up to its terminal at the Jungfraujoch, the highest point reachable by rail in Europe. Both railways operate year-round, and any passengers travelling to the Jungfraujoch must change trains at Kleine Scheidegg. The pass is linked to the summit of the Lauberhorn and to Arvengarten, on the approach to the pass from Grindelwald, by chairlifts.There are also several restaurants and hotels at the summit of the pass, including the historic Hotel Bellevue des Alpes that dates back to 1840.

Piz Sardona

Piz Sardona (or Surenstock) is a mountain in the Glarus Alps, located on the border between the cantons Glarus and St. Gallen. The 3,056 metres high mountain overlooks the valleys of Elm (Glarus) and Calfeisen (St. Gallen). Less than one kilometre south of the summit lies the tripoint (3,000 metres) between the cantons of Glarus, St. Gallen and Graubünden. The summit itself is the northernmost point above 3,000 metres in Switzerland.

The massif is covered by a few small glaciers, the Sardonagletscher lying near the summit on the east side.

Piz Sardona is located within the Glarus thrust, a geologic UNESCO world heritage site, named Swiss Tectonic Arena Sardona.

The Foo Pass lies to the north of the Piz Sardona and carries a hiking trail from Weisstannen in St. Gallen to Elm in Glarus, forming part of the Alpine Pass Route between Sargans to Montreux.

Richetli Pass

The Richetli Pass (German: Richetlipass) is a high mountain pass in the Glarus Alps in the Swiss canton of Glarus. The pass crosses between the heads of the valleys of the Linth and the Sernf rivers, using the col between the Hausstock and Kärpf mountains, at an elevation of 2,261 m (7,418 ft).The pass is traversed by a trail, which connects the village of Elm, at an elevation of 977 m (3,205 ft) with the village of Linthal, at an elevation of 650 m (2,130 ft). The trail forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux.

Sefinenfurgge Pass

The Sefinafurgga (Swiss German, Germanized: Sefinenfurgge) is a mountain pass of the Bernese Alps. The pass crosses the col between the peaks of Hundshore and Bütlasse, at an elevation of 2,612 m (8,570 ft).The pass is traversed by a hiking track, which connects the village of Lauterbrunnen, at an elevation of 795 m (2,608 ft), and the Alpine hamlet of Griesalp, at an elevation of 1,408 m (4,619 ft) in the upper Kiental south of Reichenbach im Kandertal at the entrance of the Kiental. The track forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux.

Surenen Pass

The Surenen Pass (German: Surenenpass) is a high mountain pass across the Urner Alps in the canton of Uri in Central Switzerland. The pass crosses the col between the Blackenstock (2915 m) and the Eggenmanndli (2448 m) peaks, at an elevation of 2,292 m (7,520 ft).The pass is traversed by a trail, which connects the village of Altdorf, in the canton of Uri (460 m (1,510 ft)), with the village of Engelberg, in the canton of Obwalden (1,000 m (3,300 ft)). The trail forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans to the east and Montreux to the west of Switzerland.

Weisstannen

Weisstannen is a village located in the canton of St. Gallen, Switzerland. It lies in the municipality of Mels, south-west of Sargans.Weisstannen is located at 1,004 metres above sea level on the Seez river in the Weisstannen valley (Weisstannental). It lies at the foot of the Pizol mountain.Weisstannen is the starting point of the trails across Foo and Riseten passes, which cross to different villages in the canton of Glarus. The trail across the Foo Pass leads to the village of Elm and forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a hiking trail which passes through Weisstannen on its journey from Sargans to Montreux. The trail across the Riseten Pass leads to the village of Matt.

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