Snowshoeing

Snowshoeing

Rischinerwald Trail

As the name suggests, this easy and relatively short snowshoe hike leads from Blatten valley station through snowy Rischinu Forest to Stalden, making a detour to Gibidum dam above the Massa Gorge. Along the way you’ll be spoiled by Franz and his team at the Belstar restaurant.

A snowshoe hike in the Blatten-Belalp region is always a special experience. The length and difficulty level of this 4.4km trail mean it’s also suitable for families and more casual winter sports enthusiasts. From the Belalp-Bahnen valley station, the trail leads in the direction of the Belstar restaurant “zum Franz”, where the host and his team extend a “witches’ welcome” in honour of the famous “Witches’ Descent” ski event that takes place on Belalp. It’s worth noting that this is your last chance for a pit stop before you head into snowy Rischinu Forest and hike the gentle, hilly terrain up to Gibidum dam at 1,436m in altitude. The 21-hectare reservoir lake is supplied with water from a number of sources, including the Great Aletsch Glacier. The fact that 65% of the reservoir’s basin is glaciated makes it quite special – just like the view from the 120m-high arch dam over the lake and surrounding mountains.

Turn-by-turn directions

Starting from the Belalp-Bahnen valley station in Blatten, follow the road to the Belstar restaurant “zum Franz”. Cross the Bruchibach stream below the restaurant and head into Rischinu Forest. Snow-capped pine trees line the route to Stalden and Gibidum reservoir. On the way back, you can turn into the forest at the halfway point to access Blatten valley station.

Start: Blatten Valley Station (1332 m)
Destination: Blatten Valley Station (1333 m)

Author's recommendation

Visit the Belstar restaurant “zum Franz” either before or after the winter hike – or even before and after. Take the time to soak up the tranquillity and the beautiful views by Gibidum reservoir lake.

Technical information

  • Altitude

    1484 m 1328 m

  • Ascent

    192 m

  • Descent

    192 m

  • Technique

    Bewertung: 1.0 von 5.0 Punkten

  • Stamina

    Bewertung: 2.0 von 5.0 Punkten

  • Experience

    Bewertung: 3 von 5.0 Punkten

  • Landscape

    Bewertung: 4.0 von 5.0 Punkten

Public transport

Accessible by train and bus. From Brig station, take the PostBus  to Blatten (Belalp).

Approach

Motorway A9 direction Brig. Continue direction Naters until Blatten.

Parking

Short-stay car park 
For durations of less than one day, the best option is the short-stay car park (fee payable).

 

Indoor / outdoor car parks 
Guests who stay for longer than 2 days in Blatten-Belalp can park in the outdoor or indoor car parks. Payment can be made at the ticket machines or at the information and ticket counters in Blatten.

The car parks cost CHF 12.00 a day in winter and CHF 9.00 in summer.

Guests who have paid the tourist tax or who are members of Pro Blatten enjoy a discount of 15%.

 

Rischinu car park
During the winter season, the car park in Rischinu may be used free of charge. A regular shuttle bus carries guests to the base station of the cable car and gondola in comfort.

Further information:  http://www.belalp.ch/regionorte/blatten-belalp/parkmoeglichkeiteninblatten.php 

http://www.belalp.ch/gettinghere/bycar.php

Equipment

We recommend: 

  • Good, waterproof footwear
  • Snowshoes
  • hiking poles
  • clothing suitable for the weather: always carry a waterproof jacket
  • hat or cap
  • sunscreen
  • bottle for water, picnic
  • camera
  • printout of this hike (click “Print” icon, top right, to download)

Safety information

Use of the snowshoe trails and the information on this website is at hikers’ own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.

  • Bring a map. Download full description of this route including large-scale map by clicking on “Print” icon, top right of this page.
  • Use marked trails only, and observe all signposting – for your own safety, to safeguard grazing animals and to avoid disturbing wildlife.
  • Please be considerate to other trail users, and to the plants and animals. Do not leave any waste in nature.
  • Take extra care protecting yourself from the sun at altitude. UV radiation can be exceptionally strong, even in cloudy weather.
  • Plan hike carefully: take into consideration fitness level of each participant, weather forecast and season.
  • Inform others of planned route, and whenever possible, avoid going alone.
  • Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains, without warning. Appropriate clothing is therefore essential, along with adequate supplies of food and water. In uncertain weather, turn back in good time.
  • Do not venture onto glaciers without a mountain guide.
  • Take note of the warning signs that point out the constant danger, especially the danger of avalanches.

Additional information

More information about the destination:

Belalp-Blatten

Literature

The tourist office in Blatten has got brochures and information material about hiking in the region.

Maps

SwissTopo Maps 1:50'000: 264S Jungfrau