4-DAY LOOP IN THE RÄTIKON IN AUSTRIA – WITH ASCENT OF SCHESAPLANA AND TRIP TO SWITZERLAND
Level: T2, with parts T3
Period: late June – mid-September
This hike circles roughly high up around the Lünersee. This is not a beginners hike. You need to be sure-footed for this one. The hiking times listed below are adapted to hiking with children.
Day 1: Take the Lünerseebahn gondola, situated at the end of the Brandnertal in Vorarlberg. You’ll arrive at the Douglashütte on the Lünersee (1979 m). Climb to the Totalphütte (2385 m) – 3,3 km, 2:30, ↑ 500 m, ↓ 90 m. This is a relatively short route, you could do this for example a bit later in the afternoon.
Day 2: Climb the Schesaplana (2964 m) – 4:00 ↑ 620 m, ↓ 620 m, T3 (with steep sections and some cables). You will stay another night in the Totalphütte. You need to check beforehand (for instance at the Totalphütte) if you can cross the snow at the glacier at the Schesaplana without gear. Even in the middle of summer the snow section can be too challenging. You don’t want to end up like this family.
Day 3: Hike from the Totalphütte to the Schesaplanahütte (1908 m) – 11 km, 5:00, ↑ 400 m, ↓ 1085 m. This hut is in Switzerland, so you’ll cross the border here through the mountains. There are some parts in this section that are not suitable for peaople with a fear of heights.
Day 4: Hike from the Schesaplanahütte (2679 m) to the Douglasshütte (1979 m): 11,5 km, 5:00, ↑ 500 m, ↓ 400 m. Return with the Lünerseebahn, or stay another night at the Douglasshütte and take the Lünerseebahn back down the next day.
Handy to know: the Totalphütte, Schesaplanahütte and Douglashütte are easy to book via Alpsonline. Drinking water is available for free in all huts. You can park your car at the Lünersee Parkplatz (4 days parking: €15).