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The Four Headwaters Trail

Discover Europe's water tower | 4 days (Hike)

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In the heart of the Swiss Alps, the Gotthard massif, which divides Switzerland and Europe north and south like a barrier, the most important rivers of Europe have their source. Discover the wild and contrasting water reservoir of Europe on this multiday trekking tour.

The hike starts high up on the Oberalp Pass and leads to the dreamy Lake Toma and on to the source of the Reuss on the Gotthard Pass. Then the south greets you and the path leads through the Betretto valley to the source of the Ticino. Over the Nufenen Pass you reach the high valley of Goms. And finally, the eternal ice of the Rhone glacier glistens high above Gletsch, where the Rhone, the third longest river in the Alps, rises and begins its journey to its mouth in the Camargue in the Mediterranean. So varied is the landscape, so different the history of the rivers on their way and so essential their importance as a lifeline for people, animals and plants.

Technique
easy-medium

Continuous trail, surefootedness and first experience of mountain hikes required, terrain: mostly moderately steep with short steeper passages (T2), alpine technique: no experience necessary.

Condition
medium

Walking time from 5-7 hrs. up to approx. 1200 altitude meters, approx. 300 vertical meters/hour.

Group

5-10 guests per hiking guide

Meeting place

9.15 a.m. Andermatt train station (train arrival 9.06 am Andermatt train station)

Departure

approx. 15.30 p.m. Andermatt train station

Accommodation

(depending on the date, an alternative choice of hotel with comparable services may occur).

Note

The offer takes into account the current Covid-19 regulations of the FOPH.

The e-bike route on the last day is easy to ride. The ride takes about 1 h and leads low-traffic paved as well as gravel roads. Alternatively, the ride can be done by post bus or bike shuttle bus.

Termine | Preise | Onlinebuchung

Vier Quellen Weg

4 days
1 possible date
from 1279.- CHF
show prices & dates
Buchungspaket
14.07. - 17.07.2022
4 days
Status:
not bookable
1279.- CHF

Tag 1 The Furka-Oberalpbahn takes you in a short ride to the Oberalp Pass. The hike starts on the cantonal border of Uri and Graubünden. The view towards the east into the gentle landscape of the Surselva is impressive. Then the path leads towards the south into the Maighels valley and zigzags up over a steep step. Hidden behind a rock barrier lies the crystal clear Lai da Tuma, which also marks the source of the Rhine. Past Lai Urlaun and Lai Carin you reach the Maighels pass. Back in the canton of Uri you descend to Vermigelboden and into the Unteralp valley. Here, the taxi is already waiting for you and takes you back to the hotel in Andermatt. (Walking time: 4.5 h, distance: 13 km, ascent/descent: 750/800 meters).

Day 2 A bit more comfortable than travelers 200 years ago in the stagecoach, the post bus chauffeurs you up to the Gotthard Pass. Along Lake Lucendro, the path leads to the alp of the same name and a short time later to a small, glassy mountain lake, the source of the Reuss. Over the Lucendropass the Leventina with its southern charm greets you. Now follows the way down with an impressive view of the wide firn surface of the Basodino and the Ticino mountains. (Walking time: 4 h, distance: 11.5 km, ascent/descent: 600/760 meters).

Day 3 Steep climb through the sparse mountain forest up to the Piansecco hut. This climb has to be earned. But then the high trail leads gently into the farthest Bedretto Valley to Alpe die Cruina and the headwaters of the Ticino. Through the wide, alpine mountain landscape you climb towards the Nufenen pass, which offers a breathtaking view of the imposing Gries glacier and the Blinnenhorn. In the background you can see the mighty peaks of the Bernese Alps. The post bus takes you comfortably into the high valley of Goms to Oberwald. (Walking time: 4.5h, distance: 11 km, ascent/descent: 1130/280 meters).

Day 4 Hike from Oberwald along the young Rhone up to the valley floor to Gletsch. Here, where the glacier tongue of the Rhone glacier was located about 150 years ago, tourism flourished at that time. Immerse yourself in this time and feel a touch of the Belle Epoque. Now the post bus will take you the next few meters up to the venerable Hotel Belvédère and the Rhone Glacier. From a viewpoint slightly above the glacier you can enjoy a wonderful view of the source of the Rhone and the surrounding mountains. Then the path climbs slightly to the Furka Pass, where the e-bike is already waiting for you and invites you to a thrilling ride to Realp and through the Urseren Valley out to Andermatt. (Walking time: 3.5 h, distance 8 km, ascent/descent: 720/200 meters | e-bike time: 1 h, distance: 21 km, ascent/descent: 90/1080 meters).

Included
  • Guiding and support by hiking guide
  • Overnight stay with breakfast: 3x hotel (basis double room)
  • 1x half board (dinner)
  • Welcome aperitif on day 1
  • E-Bike and helmet
Exclusive
  • Arrival
  • Transportation (taxi/cable car approx. CHF 40.-)
  • 1x dinner
  • Snacks and drinks

Additional services:

  • Single room supplement CHF 100.-
  • 2x half board (dinner) CHF 70.-
  • Daily luggage transfer from hotel to hotel CHF 165.-
Rental equipment

The rental equipment will be handed over at the meeting point:

  • E-Bike
  • Bike helmet

Technical equipment
  • Backpack approx. 30 l possibly with rain cover
  • Telescopic poles (optional)
Clothing
  • 1x hardshell jacket (wind- and waterproof)
  • 1x soft shell and/or fleece jacket
  • 1x hiking pants
  • Light waterproof rain pants (e.g. Gore-Tex)
  • T-shirt or shirt
  • Underwear
  • Cap/headband and hat
  • Gloves (wind and water resistant)
  • Functional socks and spare socks
  • Hiking/mountain boots (at least ankle-high, sturdy sole)
Overnight cottage
  • Clothing and shoes for the evening (accommodation & village life)
  • Personal toiletries, earplugs if necessary
  • Protective mask
  • Disinfectant
  • Towel
Food
  • Breakfast and dinner at the hotel
  • Tea and lunch must be brought by yourself or can be bought in the hotel/village
  • Snacks (e.g. bars, dried fruits, dried meat)
Various
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun and lip cream (SPF 30 or more)
  • Camera and binoculars (optional)
  • Half fare Travelcard (if available)
  • Thermos bottle made of unbreakable material
  • Small pharmacy for personal needs
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