Hiking in the Engadin
Posted on 24 Juni 2012
My wedding is over and we had a great party, but it was no time for a longer honeymoon, because my wife had to work. After alle the planning I was exhausted and needed a time-out with a short trip. In that time I stayed in contact with Anatol, an excellent photographer and UL hiker from Austria. His photos inspired me to buy the Locus Gear Khufu Sil Pyramid Shelter. He also planned a trip in that time and after some mails we decided to hike together in the Engadin in Switzerland. My train ticket was quickly booked and two days later I was on my way to Austria where I met Anatol. After a long day in several trains I reached Kufstein in the early afternoon and we started our trip to the Engadin with the car. Countless building sites extended our way and after 4 hours we reached a parking place in Buffalora near the Ofenpass. The view was superb. Snow covered mountain around us and it was pretty warm.
The first metres we followed a riverbed on the plateau of Buffalora until we reached the Ofenpass (2149m).
Shortly after that we leaved the riverbed and walked on a small single trial along the Plaun da l’ Aqua. Heather und mountain pine adorned the trail and here and there were still some old snow.
On the ascent to the Funtana da S-charl we passed the tree limit. A pleasant wind was blowing over the pastures and the first pulsatilla vernalis enjoyed the spring sun.
Crossing the Funtana da l’ S-charl (2390m) wasn’t easy. There was still a closed snow cover and we sank knee-deep into this slushy snow. But the view on the Piz Daint in the background compensated the strains.
A short break at the Plan Mattun to get some fresh cold water.
View of the valley to the Pass da Costainas.
Slowly the sun went down and we tried to find a campsite for night. The mountain slopes were overgrown and the banks of the stream were muddy and wet, but after a while we found a protected campsite for the MLD Solomid and my Locus Gear Khufu.
The night camp was set up very quickly. Then we collected some wood for a campfire to dry our wet feet, shoes and socks before we were surprised by the dawn.
We both used the Trail Designs Caldera Keg-H cooking setup to prepare the meals and warm drinks. It is perfect for short trips with freezerbag food. After the sun was gone, it was very cold and we started the fire. The evening ended with a good dram of Scotish whisky and gear talk. On this evening I went early to bed, because I was tired from the long journey and it was the right decision because some minutes after that it started to rain.
During the night we had freezing temperatures, but my down quilt kept me warm. In the morning we packed very fast. Weather conditions on this morning were perfect. The sun was shining and we decided to walk some hours before we took a break for an extensive breakfast with coffee.
Church of Lü
We passed a larch forest at Stablatschs. I have never seen such a brilliant green. It was mystical to walk through this huge trees. We followed the trail into the Val Vau. The weater conditions were still perfect.
At lunchtime we stopped at a glade to dry our wet gear from the night and to take a some snacks.
At the Döss Radond we were observed by a marmot. This sweet one sat there for a long time and did not move so that I could creep up to take a photo of it. After that the marmot to whistle ans was away.
A barn coverd in snow at the Döss Radond.
La Stretta at the foot of the Cucler da Jon dad Onsch (2775m). We had planned to camp there, but it was to early, because we arrived there in the early afternoon. Rain moved up into the valley of Val Mora and we decided to put on our rain jackets.
Three quarters of an hour later we reached this lovely place at the riverbed of the Aqua da Val Mora. The rain shower was over and the sun came out. we stopped there for a longer photo session with our shelter, because this area there looks a bit like the Rocky Mountains in Canada. Finally this photo session took a little longer than expected and we both agreed to stay there for the night, because we only had to walk three hours to the car and because we did not want to finish the tour so early.
Ultralight knife made my Markus Keppeler.
Before we had dinner in this great scenery we collected some drift wood in the riverbed for the warming campfire.
Unfortunately, there were no traces of bears or something else. Only Inov-8s.
-5°C in the morning in the end of May at 2120m. That is what I wanted, but is not everything. A bar for strengthening and we went off.
View into the Las Palas. The Aqua da Val Mora follows this valley and ends in the Aqua del Gallo.
In the morning we had some steep ascents and I had to stop more and more because one bar in the morning was not enough for me.
Interesting fixture for the snow shovel.
At the plateau of Jufplaun we stopped for breakfast and to dry ou wet gear. There were still some snow fields. The winter was hard there. Anatol told me that they had -32°C on some winter overnighter in this area.
At lunchtime we reached at the car, but did not want to finish the trip. So we decided to make an excursion into the Swiss National Park. Planned was to walk around the alp Stabelchod, but this walk was still closed because of some old snow fields, but we did not reverse. Finally we walked into the Val da Stabelchod.
It is a rough wilderness there. Everything is untouched by human. After a while we saw some people in the distance. Since we were in a locked area we decided to go back because we did not want to have any trouble with a ranger or something else.
Camping in the National Park is not allowed.
Instead, we walked along the Ova dal Fourn. It is a river in the Swiss National Park with perfect whitewater section. Next time I’ll bring my packraft with me.
Meanwhile it was getting late and we had to find a campsite for the last night. We found a perfect one at a creek in the Val Murtatöl. This valley is not far away from the plateau of Buffalora. The evening sun was shining into our faces and after a fast and cold shower in the creek the warm fire was welcome.
A cold beer was also a nice refreshment. With the impressions of the last days, we enjoyed our last evening at the campfire and decided for the future to do some more adventures together.
Last but not least I wanna thank Anatol that he showed me this splendid area. It was a pleasure to met you and I hope we can do such a trip again.
For those who are interested in Anataol’s fantastic photos please have a look here.
He also made a great video.