From Lake Hallstatt to the Dachstein summit, extend climatic zones as those from Central Europe to the Arctic: from dense forests on crystal-clear lakes, past alpine meadows and rocky karst landscapes to the no-longer-everlasting ice of the 7 glaciers on the gigantic limestone massif. Over millions of years, water and ice have formed lime into a habitat of extremes in which only extraordinary creature find their home. We delve into the fascinating landscape of the UNESCO World Heritage, get to know the importance of alpine farming and dedicate ourselves to the many seemingly unimpressive wonders along the way.
From large karst springs, on the north side of the limestone massive, gushes masses of water from large springs, unite into streams which flow into the Traun and Danube rivers before finally reaching the Black Sea.
The history of Hallstatt begins with salt mining over 7,000 years ago and has left its mark in the mountain landscape.
Lake Gosau, framed by the ragged “Gosaukamm” and the towering Dachstein massif in the east with the Gosau glacier, one of the most famous motifs of the Alpine region, is our starting point for a foot trip through one of the most varied landscapes in Austria.
The first day we start with a moderate entry stage up to the “Gablonzerhütte” and ambitious climb the extremely exposed “Donnerkogel”, before we go around the south of the peak “Bischofsmütze” with ups and downs over green pastures, over the next two days.
From Hut to Hut
From the “Hofpürglhütte” we head over the “Sulzenhals” in the hiking area of the Ramsau below the south face of the Dachstein, which rises up 1,000 metres. We pay a visit to the “Austriahütte” (Austria Hut), which also houses a small alpine museum, and pass through the southern face over the wild rocky backdrop of the “Edlgrieskars”, where highly specialised plants such as Alpine poppies and various indigenous species can be found. We cross the surreal moraine landscape of the “Landfried” valley and spend the night at the “Guttenberghaus”, a stylish, historic hut.
In the footsteps of the Dachstein explorer
We then traverse from the south across the lonely plateau to the north side of the massif and spend a night at the “Gjaid Alm”, a comfortable hut with excellent food and sauna. A detour to the lonely, bottle green “Silberkarsee” is possible. We see the turquoise meltwater in the ice lakes below the Hallstatt Glacier and visit the hut, whose foundation stone was laid by Friedrich Simony. Along the path, carved into the rock in 1843, we walk through enchanted larch groves through a fairy-tale giant carcass spring to the world-famous Hallstatt, where we will conclude the tour with an exquisite meal at the traditional inn “Simony am See”.
Meeting at 11:00 am at the “Vorderer Gosausee” (Lake Gosau) (937 m).
Get to know each other and have a preliminary discussion at the “Gasthof Gosausee” inn.
Ascent through a beautiful forest with rich undergrowth, past the ravines of the towering Donnerkogel to the “Steiglpass (2.017 m)” with an impressive view to Dachsteinand from there over a steep path down to the Hofpürglhütte (1.705 m).
▲1.200 m ▼500 m ►6 km ~4:00 h
Over pastures and through the forest on to “Stuhlam” (1.467) for a lunch break. South along the “Austriaweg” along the Gosaukamm and the passage to the “Hofpürglhütte” (1,705) with beautiful views of “Bischofsmütze” (Bishop’s cap) and “Torstein”.
▲900 m ▼700 m ►10 km ~4:00 h
Over the “Rinderfeld”, where horses are allowed to spend the summer, steeply up over the “Sulzenhals” (1.821) with beautiful views into the glacier-sharpened “Windlegerscharte”, the “Windlegergrat” and the “Eiskarlspitzen” to the “Bachlalm” (1.496m) for a lunch break.
From the “Bachlalm” we hike below the South face of the Dachstein to “Südwandhütte” (1.871) and from there over pastures and forests to the “Austriahütte” (1.638) with the Mountaineer museum.
▲1.100 m ▼1.200 m ►13 km ~6:30 h
Through the wild, rocky “Edlgrieskar” on the “Edlgrieshöhe” (2.489m), which offers breath-taking views of the Dachstein’s south face, continue through the “Landfriedtal”, a quirky glacial moraine landscape 2000 meters above sea level, where sheep graze in the summer, optional with a detour to the “Scheichenspitze” (2,667), a magnificent panoramic mountain, on to the “Guttenberghaus” (2,147m).
▲1.000 m ▼500 m ►6,4 km ~4:30 h
From the “Guttenberghaus” over the “Feistererscharte” (2,198 m), a gigantic view opens up over the karst plateau. We hike with a detour over the bottle-green “Silberkarsee”, which, on sunny days, invites you to swim (1.805 m) continue on the lonely plateau “AmStein”, to the “Gjaid Alm” (1.738m).
▲700 m ▼1.100 m ►12 km ~6:30 h
The sixth stage leads us on the so-called “Trägerweg” (carrier path) over the ice lakes just below the Hallstatt glacier up to the “Simonyhütte” (2,205m) from a break. From the terrace we enjoy the view over the glacier. From there to the “Wiesberghaus” is only 1.5 hours.
▲900 m ▼800 m ►9 km ~4:30 h
Following in Simony’s footsteps we descend via the “Tiergarten” (animal garden) and the Echerntal into the world-famous Hallstatt, where we complete the tour with a meal and, if necessary, a swim in the lake. Return to Gosau by taxi. Farewell at the Gosausee Inn at about 15:00
▲0 m ▼1.200 m ►7 km ~3:30 h
Mag Susanne Posegga Austria +43 699 128 10 204