River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers
Wonderful views of the Aletsch Glacier (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and the Fiescher Glacier are the highlights of this route. You'll also experience impressive landscapes shaped by the rapidly receding ice sheets, opportunities to refresh yourself at two different alpine huts and an exciting trip across a lengthy suspension bridge.
Need to Know
Check lift operating hours so you don't get stranded!
Take the gondola from the town of Fiesch up to Fiescheralp. Turn right (east) on a wide dirt service road and pass by several ski lifts. Choose the higher road (also called the Aletsch Glacier Loop Route
) follwing signposts towards the Marjelensee Lake and Gletscherstube Märjelen Hutte via the Talligrattunnel. Although this route follows a somewhat unaesthetic dirt road for the first part, the mountain views are great compensation. Pass by some pretty valleys, overlooks and several old shepherd huts.
The entrance to the 1-km long, level tunnel is set into the grassy hillside. This tunnel (Tälligrattunnel) was built in the 1980s to supply water to the Aletsch region in the Valais canton. Don't be put off by the drippy beginning of the tunnel passage - the drips mostly go away after the first few yards. Although the tunnel is lit by electric bulbs, some folks will have an easier time avoiding the large puddles and running water by using a headlamp or phone's flashlight. In mid-June it was chilly inside the tunnel and a light jacket was welcome.
Emerge from the tunnel and the Gletscherstube Märjelen hut soon comes into view. Relax with a meal or a drink in this pretty meadow setting next to a dammed lake. Navigate around the north side of the lake and across level, wildflower-filled meadows. The long steep descent begins in earnest at the rocky saddle. Old shepherd huts and grazing sheep populate this idyllic spot. Strong knees are required for this long, steep hillside traverse that crosses multiple burbling streams and flowery slopes.
At the edge of the deep valley, you'll get views of the Fiescher Glacier and all the polished rock domes that it has scraped away during its advances and retreats. The sediment and outflow from this glacier creates the distinctive shade of chalky green of the Weisswasser River far below.
The trail descends along this moraine ridge, popping in and out of forested sections. Soon you reach an enjoyable section of metal ramps, stairs and hand rails to surmount the short cliffs and rock domes. These are well constructed and feel safe for anyone with a reasonable head for heights.
The petite and friendly Burg alpine hut is nestled in picturesque spot high above the river and near some rock climbing walls. This is a lovely place to relax and refuel. Continue south, following signs to the Aspi-Titter suspension bridge. As you approach, you'll start to get views of this impressive engineering feat in the distance. The Aspi-Titter bridge is very long and very high!
The span is 160 meters (525 ft) long, is 120 meters (400 ft) above the raging Weisswasser River, and cost 500,000 CHF to build.
Once you reach the other side of the hanging bridge, clamber up a short but very steep ascent of the valley wall with the aid of metal ramps and stairs. You'll pop out in a sunny, pastoral landscape dotted with ramshackle barns and happily grazing cows. Continue downhill to the center of Bellwald via the hamlets of Obflie, Ried and Gasse. Reserve ample time to explore the mega-historic village of Bellwald which dates back to the 14th century.
This remote agricultural burg was only connected to the valley floor by cable car in 1956 and the first road to the valley floor was built in 1971. Check out the oldest traditional log houses and barns which were built from larch wood and suspended on rock posts/platforms to keep pests out and provide ventilation. After you're finished in Bellwald, take the old-school cable car down to Fürgangen and return to Fiesch by train.
Flora & Fauna
Maybe ibex if you're lucky!
Shared By: Megan W