Summer Hiking: Alpstein

Finally all the rain and unseasonably cool weather passed and on the first weekend it was actually sunny and dry we laced up our hiking boots and headed to the mountains. There are several places on my “must hike to” list and going to the Fählensee has been on it for quite a long time. When we noticed the weather promised to be nice, we decided that would be where we would hike to. Unfortunately the little hotel on the lake was booked, but we’ve already decided to return later this summer. We took the funicular up to the Hoher Kasten and from there hiked down to the Sämtisersee.

We had originally hoped to swim in one of the lakes, but since it hadn’t really been warm up until then, the lakes hadn’t had a chance to warm up and we decided it against it. The views of the surrounding mountains were breathtaking the entire time.
By the time we reached the Fählensee, we were ready for a small break and stopped for lunch at the hotel in Bollenwees, right on the lake. It’s a popular place and it’s hard to snag a room, but if you do, I suspect it’s wonderfully quiet once the day hikers leave in the evening.

Since we weren’t lucky enough to reserve a room, we booked a room at the Stauberern instead. So after a lunch of Rösti, we hiked up again. We had more lovely views of the lakes. From above, Fählensee reminds me of the beautiful fjords in Norway.

The view from Stauberen has the Rhine valley with Liechtenstein and Austria on one side and the Alpstein mountains on the other. It’s a bit of a culture shock to suddenly see the developed valley. After dinner, we waited for the sun to set over the mountains and touch everything with its golden color.

The hike can easily be done in one day, circling back to the Hoher Kasten or taking the Staubern funicular back down to the valley. We opted to stay the night to take advantage of the good weather and to see the sunset.

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