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Kandersteg – Golitschenpass – Elsigenalp – Panoramaweg – Rybrügg / Frutigen

A climb of 1000m takes you to the Golitschenpass from where there are several options down into the Engstligental and back via Frutigen.

The view over Kandersteg from the Golitschenpass:

The view over Kandersteg from the Golitschenpass

Start from Kandersteg village and follow signs for Höh, an excellent vantage point with a seat from which to view the comings and goings down below; it takes about 45 minutes from Kandersteg. From here, follow signs for the Golitschenpass which takes you through a mixture of forest and meadow and crosses one significant waterfall, which is a good place for a brief stop. The path continues on to the hut on the Golitschenalp where you can get simple refreshments and can buy the local cheese.

The route from the Golitschenalp up to the Golitschenpass is straight up the steep, meadowed mountain side until you reach the pass at 2180m. The views are stunning - back the way you have come down into Kandersteg and away to the Blümlisalp mountain range; south to the rugged peaks of Stand and First; and west into the grassy alpine bowl above Elsigenalp.

Take the path signed to Unter Elsigenalp, passing the chalets of Obere Elsige after about half an hour of descent. The large restaurant and ski school at Undere Elsigenalp is 20 minutes further on and can provide welcome refreshment. This is the major decision point. A cable car provides an easy service every 15 minutes, delivering you to Elsigbach after a 6 minute ride. A bus then runs at 35 past the hour to Achseten Kirche ( ), arriving at 45 past; the bus from Adelboden to Frutigen arrives at 01 past the hour, delivering you to Frutigen Bahnhof at 22 past ( ) with time to catch the Kandersteg train at 25 past or the bus at 30 past (timings are for 2011). A variation would be to walk to Achseten Kirche from the bottom cable car station which takes about 30 minutes.

For a longer, far more rewarding return, take the Panoramaweg from Undere Elsigenalp, a high level path with magnificent views over the whole Engstligental, which finally descends steeply towards Frutigen, passing through a number of outlying hamlets. Rather than walking all the way into Frutigen, turn right in Reinisch village and head for the bus stop at Rybrügg where the Kandersteg bus should arrive around 32 past the hour, delivering you back to Kandersteg at just before the hour.

The Panoramaweg is a fairly easy walk but will take nearly 3 1/2 hours, passing initially under formidable rock bluffs and then through open meadows where alpine strawberries and raspberries can often be found. A steep descent starts at a chalet right on the point of the mountainside where the valley beneath divides at Frutigen; the left-hand branch is the Engstligental up to Adelboden; the right-hand valley is the Kandertal up to Kandersteg. There is nowhere to get any refreshment along the Panoramaweg so ensure that you are well supplied before leaving Undere Elsigenalp (although we once found a "beer trügli" with cans of drink in the water trough, operating an honesty payment system!).

Time Height Location Comment
09:30:00 1175 Hotel Blümlisalp
10:10:00 1335 Höh
10:50:00   Hut on the alp
11:10:00   Waterfall 5 mins rest
11:35:00 1833 Golitschenalp 10 mins rest
12:40:00 2194 Golitschenpass 35 mins lunch
13:45:00 1932 Obere Elsige
14:05:00 1800 Undere Elsigenalp 30 mins beer
15:20:00 1693 Achsetberg
16:00:00 1520 Chalet & trügli 5 mins rest
16:20:00 1421 Chalet on the point
16:35:00 1280 Truten
17:30:00 858 Reinisch
17:55:00 780 Rybrügg bus stop Bus at 32 mins past hour 2011

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-- JaneCurry - 2009-06-08 - 11:19
Topic revision: r6 - 17 Jun 2011, AndrewFindlay
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