The Hardergrat

Hardergrat ridge Interlaken

The trail literally stays on the ridge and often stretches out in front of you in the most intimidating ways.

An early start is necessary from Interlaken for many reasons; You'll never forget watching the sunrise on the Jungfrau group, cooler temps for the monster climb (less water needed), and to insure enough time to make the last train to Brienz.

An early start is necessary from Interlaken for many reasons; You’ll never forget watching the sunrise on the Jungfrau group, cooler temps for the monster climb (less water needed), and to insure enough time to make the last train to Brienz.

As soon as you pass tree line, you are on the ridge proper and will stay on it for almost the entire route.

As soon as you pass tree line, you are on the ridge proper and will stay on it for almost the entire route.

An early start is necessary from Interlaken for many reasons; You'll never forget watching the sunrise on the Jungfrau group, cooler temps for the monster climb (less water needed), and to insure enough time to make the last train to Brienz.

A sea of clouds washing over the crest is beautiful, but pay attention to how wet the grass is getting!

As soon as you pass tree line, you are on the ridge proper and will stay on it for almost the entire route.

The crux of the ridge comes at an incredibly narrow piece of ridge with massive drops on both sides. This is where you must be confident in your movement.

An early start is necessary from Interlaken for many reasons; You'll never forget watching the sunrise on the Jungfrau group, cooler temps for the monster climb (less water needed), and to insure enough time to make the last train to Brienz.

A very special summer day on the ridge where only the highest points were above the cloud line.

As soon as you pass tree line, you are on the ridge proper and will stay on it for almost the entire route.

For the alpinists/trail runners, you’ll find the ridge to be a remarkable feature to move on – as steep and crazy as it is, much of it is runnable…

The Hardergrat  |  Hiking & Trail Running

One of the most unique ridge trails in the Alps

Description : The Hardergrat has become a classic, and for good reason. There are few geographic features this defined, and this perfect, with a trail so long. All with stunning views of the Jungfrau Region’s highest peaks; the Eiger, Mönch, Jungfrau, Schreckhorn and Finsteraarhorn. It’s not just a trail, it’s a journey where you will have mental ups and downs when you see all that stretches out ahead of you. It looks impossible, but it’s not, it’s just very, very long. And because of its position high above the Brienzersee (lake), the next day you get to look at what you’ve done and marvel at your own experience. In this way, it’s more like having climbed a route, or a big mountain. It’s something that stays with you.

Of its 25km, about 18km are spent on a sharply defined ridge, with significant, even airy, drops on both sides, in some places, 1500 meters of drop… In places, the grassy ridge is more like alpine climbing. It’s not for those afraid of exposure, and should absolutely never be attempted when wet. The route is not an official trail, but a trail does stay on the ridge the entire length, with cables in place at the more exposed sections. However, the steepest section is unprotected, and it is a down climb. Trekking poles are highly recommended.

An early start is required from Interlaken so as to make the Brienzer Rothorn’s last train down to Brienz. The trail is slow going and parties take up to 10 hours to finish it. Do not underestimate this route!

Check in with the Brienz Rothorn Bahn to see what time the last train departs, or, be prepared to descend 1700 meters after what has already been a big day.

For more photos and additional info, visit our Elevation Hardergrat Page, or the ALPSinsight Hardergrat Hiking Page and Hardergrat

Start : Interlaken /   Finish : Brienzer Rothorn Station, train down to Brienz

Distance : ~24km

Vertical : ~3000 meters

Effort : Very Difficult & Exposed

Dan’s Tip : Take enough water, there isn’t any on the ridge from the Harderkulm station all the way to the Brienzer Rothorn. Also, study the SwissTopo map, there are bail out options that will get you down on either side. And remember, ice cream awaits at the finish.


For more information

Or to join us for a trip in the Alps, visit our partners.

The Hardergrat from the Augstamatthorn

Krissy Moehl on the Hardergrat at sunrise. April 2016 Trail Runner DIRT.


Run the Alps
PatitucciPhoto Logo
Basecamp Interlaken


Comments 115

  1. My wife had reached out to Dan for some trail suggestions before our trip to Switzerland. We had a few ideas of where we wanted to run and bike and hike. Dan strongly suggested the Hardergrat. We took his word for it and were treated to one of the best runs we have ever experienced. The trail was challenging, but the views are your reward for hard work. I would recommend taking plenty of water and food and your best camera. Be sure that your quads are up for a full day as well. The Hardergrat will forever stand out in my mind as the quintessential Swiss mountain run. I hope to be back to run even further in the future.

      1. Post

        Hi Alex,
        End of May is likely too early – the north side of the ridge holds snow but it depends on the winter. I haven’t been home in over a month so am not a good resource right now.

      2. Hi Kim!

        This is Alex’s wife. Alex and I ran this trail in late July. We’re from the States so we’re not sure of the trail conditions and how early the Hardergrat typically clears off. I’m sure Dan or other locals from Interlaken could advise you if you’re wanting to go earlier.

      3. Post

        Kim, feel free to check in for a conditions report if you do end up coming early in the season. It looks depends on temperature and snow quantities.

  2. Go somewhere that will capture your heart. The Jungfrau region of Switzerland has done just that for me. After our first trip to Interlaken, Lauterbrunnen, and Murren in 2011, my husband and I were determined to return on our next European adventure. This time around we had our hearts set to maximize our time on the miles of mountainous trails that the Jungfrau region provides. The Hardergrat trail is a trail runner’s paradise. We took the advice of Interlaken’s native adventurer, Dan Patitucci, and put our legs to work hiking/running along the Hardergrat ridge that overlooks Interlaken and Lake Brienz. It was a trail run we will never forget. The misty morning air broke as we climbed the ridge away from Harder Klum, and the views in every direction were nothing short of incredible- green pastures, snow-capped Swiss Alps, and crystal blue Lake Brienz. Add this trail to your “Must Do” list of adventures. Your heart will forever thank you.

  3. Wow, very inspiring pictures and words. The Hardergrat has been on my list since I first saw Dan’s photos of it on the blog. I hope this sommer I’ll finally make it to Interlaken 🙂

  4. Hi Dan,

    I’m reading conflicting distances. If hiking from the base of Harder Klum (therefore not taking the train) and hiking up to Harder Klum and hiking all the way to the train station at Brienzer Rothorn is it 16 miles or 27 miles?

    1. Post

      Hi Giselle,
      From Interlaken, the whole ridge to the train station is about 27 kilometers.

  5. Hi, anyone knows a running group that goes to Hardergrat so I can join them? my pace in flat areas is 9- 9:30 minutes mile but I imagined that I will run that trail at 10:30 to 11 since I don’t have experience running on rocky trails. my email is doraflores1@hotmail.com. I am arriving to Geneva on June 18th 2016.
    I am willing to pay to a running tour if I need to : )

  6. Which way is “better”? Harderkulm to Brienzer Rothorn or the other way around?

    1. Post

      In my opinion, Harderkulm to the Rothorn. Seeing the ridge in this direction is more beautiful, and the train ride down at the end is a good way to end the day. It only gets better going east, it only gets more forested going west.

  7. Does the train ride down at the end really cost 88 Swiss (CHF)? I find that hard to believe for a 1 hour 1 way ticket train from Rothorn to Brienz BRB. Are there any cheaper ways to take a train down the mountain or must I spend a lot of money for this hike?

    1. Post

      Hi Jack,
      Welcome to Switzerland and Swiss prices! Yes, it costs a fortune, and agreed, it is absurd. But, that is the way it is here. You can check the Brienzer Rothorn site for ticket prices and times. Alternatively, you can walk down.

  8. Can you take the Harderbahn funicular to the top hike to Rothorn and take the train down? When is the earliest Harderbahn funicular? Or did do you have to walk up?

  9. Looking at hiking this in late September, are there any spots where a small one man tent would be able to be safely put? I would love to do this over two days and be able to capture the sunset, sunrise, and stars if possible.

    1. Post

      Hi Jacob, Yes, for sure there are camp spots throughout the route – just no water anywhere on the ridge.

    2. My wife and I did most of this hike on September 2. We hiked from Interlaken to Blasenhubel and down to Oberreid. I am curious where you would have space to camp. We did hear a couple had camped on Augstmatthorn and there is a bit of room on the approach to Suggiture but that’s about it.

  10. Unreal beauty! Thank thank you for the tip, we did it on my bday and it was the best celebration ever! Breathtaking views, redefining what “epic” really means. Hardergrat is a real beast, beast that can’t be tamed, you just have to be as wild to go with it. Thank you for sharing this gem *

    1. Post

      This is so great to see. Thank you so much for the follow up. We are looking for other classics. Stay tuned.

  11. Thanks to seeing Dan’s amazing photos, we decided to do the ridge run (3 experienced racers). He’s not joking about giving yourself enough time and bringing plenty of water- on a 30 degree day, we were lucky to find a patch of lingering snow. It’s an awesome trail, and certainly one you don’t want to underestimate. Truely beautiful following the long spine with a view down to the blue water, and of course across to the higher summits too. Passing through the busy stations on either end remind that you are just above Interlaken, but the hours in between let you run wild and alone. Can’t wait to run it again! Thanks for the inspiration!

  12. Hi Dan,

    Great post. For weather condition, does the trail match interlaken’s weather in terms of rains? If not, which town do you think is closest?

    I’m actually planning on going (alone) tomorrow and wanting to make sure it’s a good time.

    I have done the O loop in Torres del Paine before and have run a few marathons. So I’m hoping I’ll be okay in terms of endurance.

    Hope I hear from you 🙂

    1. Post

      I hope you get this in time! You are here in Interlaken now? Tomorrow’s weather should be perfect! Dry and cool, cold actually! Careful up there! It’s in perfect conditions. I’d love to know how it goes, please let me know. And yes, Interlaken’s forecast is best. Enjoy!!

    2. The descent on the west side of Wytlouwithoren is particularly dangerous. Steep and lots of loose rock.

  13. My god you are the best! Alright I shall go then 🙂

    I’ll leave at 5am from downtown. Hopefully that’s early enough.

    I’m assuming there is no option of getting a bus/train before one arrives at the trailhead.

    1. Post

      I just checked and the Brienzer Rothorn train is still running to get you down. But you’ll have to walk through Interlaken that early.

    2. Its 2.5 hours up from the Harder Kulm funicular to the top. Faster if you are running it I suppose. Watch for spider webs in the dark.

      1. Guys I went there alone at 4am and it was pitch black… even with my headlamp, I could not really see the trail well. Honestly I chickened out and came back to sleep 😛

        I am going to go do part of it in the morning though. I guess the lesson learned is going alone at 3-4am is a bit of a bad idea.
        Thanks a lot Dan and Pete.

        1. I know what you mean. The trail is a little confusing at first. From the trail head there is one switchback and then you have a choice. We went to the right and followed the road up as far as it would go. I also recommend the Swiss Map app on your phone and a data plan. You can get a signal for most of the route on the trail. Even at the top.

          1. Post

            Today’s clouds are a bit of a problem as well. They are probably right on the ridge and you would have been in and out of them. Annoying. Tomorrow!?!?

  14. Hi!
    Im planning to do this in a couple of weeks, propably not alone (trying to get friends along, not very successful atm;) unless it is raining do you still think it is poosible weather/climatewise? Also, I have done a bit of hiking/running/orienteering and trail running but am not really a hard core experienced alpine trail runner, is this still possible? Thanks, Viktoria

    1. Post

      It’s getting too late in the year to do the Hardergrat. Short days, slippery grass, and especially snow shit it down. I’d say it is not a good idea. You might still be able to up the Augstmatthorn from the Lombachalp on the north side. Otherwise, it’ll be there for next summer.

  15. I was looking to go up the Augustmatterhorn and hike back to Harderkulm on Saturday (Oct. 20), or possibly up Harderkulm and bail out to Lombach. I think the days are getting too short to do the whole thing. It’s supposed to be sunny, think the conditions will be good enough for a sunrise start?

    1. Post

      The weather should be good for the weekend. But I don’t know how fast you move so it’s hard to say. I think a Interlaken to Augstmatthorn then down to Lombachalp should be fine. I don’t know what time the last bus is down though. It’ll be great up there, enjoy!

  16. I’m hoping for advice…

    My wife and I will be doing this hike next summer. We are in decent shape, but this is still a hard day. I’m thinking of starting on the east end and working my way west. The reason is that if we wanted to bail before finishing, we would already have done the sharper ridges and more exciting parts. Do any of you have advice on this? Is it a bad idea to take the early train and start on the east end? How far is it from train station to train station? Where would be some decent bail points be located if the entire distance becomes too long? Am I wrong that it’s more exciting on the eastern half of the hike?

    1. Post

      I think most people do the ridge east to west these days, and many even stay the night at the Brienzer Rothorn station, it’s a hotel – good idea… yes, the section from the east end to the Suggiture is the best part. Try to at least make it to the Augstmatthorn, then you can bail off north or south, although south is a long way down, but easy. There are many bail offs after the Tannhorn, so you’ll have options going west. Study the map!
      Have fun,

    2. The stations in Brienz are across the street from each other according to Google Streetview.
      My wife and I did this hike in September from the west. If you start here you are in the tree for quite a while and we ran out of time to make it all the way even though we started at 4:30. We will do it again but we would either start at the east end or take the trail up from Niederreid. The trail comes up just to the west of Suggiture where the trees end. Suggiture is the peak to the west of Augstmatthorn. We had to bail at Blasenhubel and walk down to Oberreid. We are in good shape. Hope this helps


    3. The train stations in Brienz are across the street from each other. Check Google Streetview.

      My wife and I did this hike in September. Even though we started very early we didn’t finish it. We would recommend taking the trail up from Niederreid which comes up just to the west of Suggiture. That way you miss the trees and get maximum Hardergrat hiking. The east end is also a very good option. Either way, as Dan always suggests. You should start early.

    1. Post

      Hi Lucas, Here’s a link to my Strava page with the last time I did it this year. But we made it longer, and accessed the ridge in a different place. Where we entered the ridge line is where it starts getting good, and this line of ascent is very cool and direct – locals tip! After our access point we did the whole thing and then kept going to finish off the whole ridge. Strava has a bunch of versions of the whole thing. https://www.strava.com/activities/708663100

  17. One last question. We are going to start on the east end and move west since the steep drop offs are on that side. I have no doubt that we will probably bail downhill on the south side since that’s the side the train starts, hence my car will be on that side. Any suggestions on ways to get back to my car?

    1. Post

      If you drop into the towns along the lake you can catch a train back to Brienz, or stick your thumb out, hitching here is usually successful pretty quickly. Just don’t smell too bad, the Swiss keep things clean 😉 But the train line is on that side of the lake so it makes it easy. If you have time, and the timing works out, you can even catch the boat ferry to Brienz, which lets off at the train station and is super fun, plus it allows a view of the whole Hardergrat from the lake, very cool after you’ve been up there.

  18. Hi! Thanks for this great post! My husband and I are going to be in Interlakken for a few days in mid May. Do you think it will be possible to do this trail then? It sounds like it might still have snow and be impassable at that point?

    1. Post

      Hi Nikki, May is a tough one, it’s a maybe. Depends on how much snow we got in the winter and how much has melted off. Remember you can look up from the south and it can be totally snow free and green. But the north side, in May, can be completely different. It only takes one section of scary snow to stop you. Check in with me again when you are closer to the dates, if I’m around I’ll let you know what the conditions are. Overall though… have alternate plans! Use our Trips pages to help – there’s plenty to do but in May you will need to consider the snow and that huts won’t be open. No matter what – you’ll have fun.

  19. Hi,

    I am planning on camping along the trail, do you have a map or waypoints of potential sites which would be large enough to pitch a tent?


    1. Post

      Hi Josh,
      I don’t have anything like this, but you’ll find spots. Remember, there is no water up there and carrying a heavy pack will not be fun on the ridge.

    2. I spent the night up at the top of Suggiture which has room for a one man tent but made for a long second day. You could probably fit a two man on the top of Augstmatthorn. Like mentioned there is no water so bring the extra weight slowed me down quite a bit.

    3. The area east of Blasenhubel should have space on the north side of the trail (south side being a drop off).

  20. Hi all

    My girlfriend is considering to do this trail run in the coming summer. I am currently not sure if this might be an option for as well, since i am actually afraid of hights.

    Can someone advise if this route is actually recommendable for people who are afraid of hights? Are there any extreme exposures? Are you passing any scarp resp. cliffs on this route? How dangerous is this route in general? Any chance to fall down?

    For some feedback i would be very thankfull and i guess it would help me to decide to join her or not. I guess this decision would need to be done soon, since the route obviously requires a very good preperation and fitness 🙂


    1. Post

      Hi Patrick, I’d say if you are uncomfortable with heights, do not continue east past the Augstmatthorn. It is very exposed, and yes, it has killed people when they slipped off the ridge. I have seen friends who are comfortable rock climbing get stressed. But, that first bit from Interlaken to Augstmatthorn and then down to Lombachalp is a great day on it’s own. // Dan

      1. I agree with the Admin on this. The descent from Wytlouroihoren is steep and there is lots of shale. I took my time and still slipped here. I’m not saying don’t go this way. Just saying that care should be taken here.

  21. Hi Dan,

    What distance would you be looking at for the Interlaken to Lombachalp – would it work going the opposite way and try end up at restaurant top of interlaken for lunch before getting the train down?

    1. Post

      You can for sure do it that way but need to check bus times so you know what time you’ll be starting, and what time the last train goes down – which I think will be later than normal for 2017 as they have a new restaurant for dinner at the Harderkulm and the train will service it. You can also spend the night on the Lombachalp side. There is a cool new place called the Maizyt – https://www.hofmaiezyt.ch

  22. hi there,

    How far is the Interlaken to augstmatthorn hike? how long do you think it will roughly take. we are thinking of doing it in early may.


    1. Post

      Early May is iffy for the Augstmatthorn, it really depends on how much snow we’ve had and how warm a spring it is. It will be possible, but potentially a lot of postholing in snow. It’s about 13km, 1700 meters gain, and slow going at times on a very rooty trail.

  23. aaagh, reminiscing. My husband and I did this in Sept 2015, we took the steam train up from Brienz and started the hike around 10am (there is one train that gets there earlier on Sundays during the summer). We made it to Blasenhubel around 4:50pm, but it was getting pretty stormy over Augustmathorn, so we bailed out on the trail down to Oberried. We had decided to do the east to west route because there is overall more elevation drop instead of climb, thought it might be easier, and didn’t want to get stuck doing some of the really exposed stuff in the dark. I dream about going back again to conquer the whole beast…I’m not really a runner though, I think the surest way to finish it in one day is to take the steam train up, spend the night at the hotel and start early morning. If you have a Swiss travel pass, SBB day pass or half-fare card the train ride is only 16chf one way (at least when we went). Also, even if you don’t have gps I would recommend taking a bunch of screenshots of the map so you can see your possible bail out points. You’ll know where you’re at on the trail most of the time because of the signs.
    our video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WdtFQ5XnUi8&t=185s
    some pictures https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10156582622695154&type=1&l=829423e4b5

  24. Hi, this post inspired me to attempt part of this last year – it was a stunning day in August!

    However I only went from Interlaken to just past the Augstmatthorn then turned back and came off the north side towards Habkern.

    Some colleagues and friends of mine would like to go in June and would love to do as much of the ridge as possible from West to East without perhaps doing the very most exposed parts – i.e. over the Tannhorn.

    Does this mean one needs to come off at Oberried or what is the ridge like between that bailout and the Ällgäu Lücke? Is it possible to come off at the Ällgäu Lücke on the south side instead and follow the trail to the Wasserfall Müllbach? Are any of the pictures above from this stretch?

    Should this be safe enough in June?

    Thank you very much for any help and once more for the beautiful post!

    1. Post

      The Tannhorn is the key to getting across, otherwise you’d have to drop off to the south before and then traverse east well below the crest of the ridge on the lower trail. If you went down to Brienz from there it would be okay, otherwise you have to go back up to the station. I’m traveling right now and can’t help more, but this Swiss map site is what I use.

      1. Hey,

        Thanks for the reply!

        I think if we came down at Ällgäu Lücke to the south we would be happy finishing in Brienz and wouldn’t want to get back on to the ridge. I was just wondering what the ridge was like between the Blasenhubel and the Ällgäu Lücke and if it was one of the narrowest parts or not?

        Many thanks for your help 🙂


        1. Stephen,

          Admin would know for sure as he runs the route often but you might also look at the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WdtFQ5XnUi8&t=185s which Ariel mentioned in a February 10, 2017 post. The signpost at Allgau Lucke is at 4:45 of the video I watched this video many times and they actually start at the Brienz end and descend at Blasenhubel. You can see for yourself what the ridge looks like. When I hiked this we descended at Blasenhubel but I did look at the trail ahead and it looked like most of the trail from Suggiture to Blasenhubel. Hope this helps

  25. Hi, I’m going to be in Interlaken Thursday 20th April. I don’t have the time or fitness to walk this whole trail… but simply seeing the ridge and maybe walking along it for a short while seems like an opportunity I can’t miss. There’s lots of information online regarding the whole trial but nothing detailing a shorter circle. Also what re the chances the conditions will be suitable to go up there on the dates I’m there (I’ve heard summer is coming early in Switzerland this year?)

    I managed to find a map with routes marked out but wanted to know if there was a particular route that I should avoid, or a particularly nice stretch.


    I was thinking of doing a circle route from ringgenberg and back down, or up Harderkulm and back down to Ringgenberg, or HarderKulm and back down the other side to Habkern.

    Thank you for your help in advance

    Please feel free to email me if you prefer on 007pdesai@gmail.com

    1. Post

      Hi Pratyesh, You’re right, it has been warm and the snow is melting, but it’s still April so things can change quickly in either direction. Your best bet is to go up from Rinnggenberg via the Graaggetor Trail. This gains the ridge about 30 minutes from where the ridge gets interesting, just west of the Suggiture. But you will have to go down the same way, and likely will be in snow on the ridge itself. It’s 1200 meters up and quite steep. If you continue walking from the Harderkulm Station it is very long and uninteresting in the forest. You might also be able to access the ridge from Lombachalp, on the north side, but this will surely be snow and mud and still 90 minutes walking. April is a tough month! And, there really is no easy way. Have fun!

  26. Hi! My husband and I are from Chicago and will be visiting Interlaken June 21-22 and I was hoping to do at least part of this trail. Do you have any recommendations for which spots we can get off at if we don’t do the entire trail?
    Appreciate any recommendations you might have!

    1. Post

      You can read all about the Harder on our site, the info is all there, also links to the maps so you can see how to get of early.

  27. My wife and I will be hiking this in September. We are starting on the east side and working our way west. Our plan is to start at the Brienzer Rothorn (train up) and end somewhere near Oberried to take the train back. I looked at the map and the routes show that much of the trail is not at the top of the ridge. The map (link above) shows the trail dipping below Briefenhorn and Tannhorn on the southern side. Should we ignore that part of the trail and stick to the top of the ridge? Every picture I see of this hike shows people staying on the ridge, not the side of the mountain.

    My thought is that we stay at the top of the ridge from Brienzer Rothorn all the way till right before the Augstmatthorn where there’s a trail that leads south to Oberried. Is this a bad idea?

    1. Post

      There is only one trail on the ridge proper, and it primarily stays right on the crest. You’ll never drop off it. Some maps don’t show the whole trail as until last year it was not officially a through trail. Dropping off to Oberried is an option but it’s up to you.

  28. If you look at the ridge going from east to west on the map, the trail often dips below the top of the ridge along the side of the mountain. Should we stay on that path, or stay on the ridge? We are looking at taking the train up on the east side and dropping down near oberried.

  29. Hi, I am going to Switzerland next week and I would like to hike this trail. Do you know what the snow situations is at the moment? Any chance it will be walkable next week?

  30. How was the winter in Interlaken this year?? I will be there June 7th and want to do this trail for my birthday, is it walkable yet? will be very disappointed if there is still snow on the north ridge side 🙁


    1. Post

      Hi Andrew, It should be, although I have been away for the last few weeks and am not sure how it is right now. A lot of snow fell a few days ago but in all likelihood it will be gone in the next days. In the mountains you never know… but it should go.

  31. Hello, I’m looking to do this trail next weekend, probably on 27 may. Is it too wet still? Thanks.

  32. Hi there,
    My friends and I are visiting the area this weekend and are hoping to do Interlaken to Augstmatthorn (and possibly down to Lombachalp) on Saturday 27th- would this be possible in current conditions?


    1. Post

      I’ve been away and haven’t been up there in a few weeks – but looking up now it seems clear of snow, and it’s very warm this week. Odds are it’s fine.

  33. Hello,

    I love these pictures and this ridge.

    I have seen a few pictures online of tents at Augstmatthorn or other peaks catching the sunrise etc. What are the rules on overnight stays in tents (obviously tents only, no cooking or anything like this).



  34. Hello! My husband and I are looking to hike this in late July. Planning on Interlaken to Brienz. Do you have to run part of it to make it in 10 hrs? Also, can you buy a one way ticket at the Rothron station down to Brienz at the finish, or should I reserve online? I must admit it looks a bit intimidating, but also very exciting!

    1. Post
  35. Hi !!! Do you think early October is a good timing for this hike? is it too crazy if i go by myself ?

    1. Post

      October could be perfect but see when the train stops. I don’t know you so I can’t say if you can do it solo…

  36. Hi Dan,

    Thank you for your attention to all these comments. It’s such a wealth of information. I’m heading in August 7-9 from Milan. I have no formal climbing/hiking experience, but have a marathoning background. Fitness will not be an issue, but I’m probably going to check my ego after watching the video Ariel posted and only do the Harder Kulm or Rinnggenberg to Augstmatthorn portion. I will likely be going solo as well. Couple quick questions:

    – I’ll be staying in downtown Interlaken and will likely run over to Rinnggenberg at day break. How well marked is the Graaggetor Trail as far as most direct route to the ridge? May be a silly question, but can I just start heading up on the trail until I hit the ridge or do I need a formal map? Essentially, can I take a wrong turn that dead ends before the ridge and have to double back?

    – Any precautions I need to plan for other than hydrating and sun…altitude, snakes, bears, etc. 😉

    Thanks a lot. Can’t wait to check this area out.

    1. Post

      The Graaggetor is well marked and ends on the ridge, but you should have a map in case you need to bail.

  37. HI there,

    So what is the best season to hike herdergart? Is early October too late for this hike??

    1. Post

      All the info is on our site, but typically the season is June – October. Just check when the Brienzer Rothorn train stops running in October.

  38. Thanks for this article, trip report, and answering all the questions. Also thanks to other contributors as well. Besides having a map for all the bailouts this was the only other way to prepare. I did the hike on 07/07/2017. Left Hotel Interlaken at 530am and arrived at the Rothorn Train Station at 330pm. 10 hours exactly with about 2.5 to 3 hours worth of breaks, I never once ran but I do have a great hiking pace. Lots of small breaks needed with all the up on this hot July day, eating lunch and enjoying some summits, and of course pulling out the camera every few minutes. One thing to add for my trip report was that yes, after the first and most prominent summit to me, Suggiture (my favorite), the conditions have to be dry and no heavy clouds or rain forecast for that day either. As long as you have that I felt 100% comfortable hiking all of the ridge and all the trails in and around the ridge too. I will do those anytime the weather is nice. EXCEPT for Tannhorn. One time is enough for me on Tannhorn. This is “the crux of the ridge” photo Dan has above. Its about 15 to 20 minutes of high nerves going down Tannhorn and is not for the faint of heart. When a small rock went off the side and I watched it rocket down it was the only time I felt any vertigo, but I snapped out of it fast and made it through no problems. Train ride down and boat ride had me back to Hotel Interlaken at 630pm and this is also because I just missed the 330pm train and had to wait an hour for the 430pm, last train for 2017 season is 540pm. Rating on 5 stars I give difficulty a 5 because of length and elevation gain, but on exposure I give it a 2 except again the Tannhorn has that 20 minute section I give a 4. Hope that helps some and again Thanks All! If your ever in Colorado I’d be happy to show you the best we have to offer!

  39. Hi,

    I am planning to do the shorter version ( climb up from lombachalp and hike down to harder kulm) as I only have a few hrs. Does this section have any steep and narrow trail areas with steep drop on either side.

    1. Post
  40. Hi,
    Some of us are thinking of going on the hardergrat this sunday. Weather on friday seems wet and saturday is cloudy.
    Do you think it would be ok by sunday?

    What would you advise?

    1. Post

      The forecast changes all the time. See what it does Saturday and make the call. MeteoSwiss makes it look good for a go on Sunday. I know I’m going big that day somewhere else.

  41. Hello there,
    I’m in Interlaken for a few days and would love to do the Hardergrat or a part of that at least.
    Since I’ve already hike to the harder kulm yesterday do you thing that The Graaggetor trail is a nice alternative to get to the ridge? I’ve seen that there’re the bus 102 that goes from Interlaken west to Ringgenberg but I don’t know which is the right stop to get off and find the trail. Otherwise is there a well marked trail from the harder kulm and how much time would it get to arrive on the ridge?
    Today the weather doesn’t seem a good fit right? I hope it gets clearer in next few days!
    Thank you in advance 🙂

    1. Post

      Hi Eliana,
      The Graaggetor is a great way to get on the ridge, and as a stand alone trail really special. You get off the bus at the main Ringgenberg stop and the trail is well marked right from the main road through town. The weather is a bit unstable these days, so an early start is necessary. The grass will be wet in weather like this so you need to be really heads up starting at the first steep descent from the Augstmatthorn. These aren’t ideal conditions, but you can at least go up to Augstmatthorn and then either turn around and go back, or drop north to Lombachalp and take the bust down.

  42. Hey, I just wanted to say thank you, today we follow your advice and everything went well! For those who are reading The Graaggetor is really steep, it took us a little more than two hours because of the wet grass in some points and slippery rocks, but we did it! There were lots of people once we were up and it was very hot, take as much water as you can, really!
    You have a beautiful country, I hope to come back soon!
    Hopefully if the weather is fine we are doing the trift bridge on monday 😛
    Again, thank you!

    1. Post

      Elian, thank you for the follow up, I really appreciate that. It is fun to see how things go for people and I think it is of great value for others to see as well. Enjoy the Trift bridge!

  43. Wow, what a journey! Linked this one with the Grindelwald to Interlaken route. Day 1: Grindelwald > First > Faulhorn > Schynige Platte > Interlaken and day 2 : The hardergrat. And I actually went up to Faulhorn the day before day 1 so lets just say my legs are a bit sore now 🙂 But hey, it is absolutely doable! Hardergrat is tough, steep and I would say that you need to be very fit but also technically excellent when it comes to trailrunning/scrambling. 4 main take aways and tips (all stated before but repetition is good) 1. start early 2. bring water 3. Do not attempt when wet 4. Bring a headlamp (I didn’t so I fumbled in the dark for about an hour). Other than that, remeber to stop, enjoy the view and silence. Thanks for sharing this route ALPSINSIGHT!

    1. Post

      It depends on how fast you hike. It’s different for everyone. Starting at Harderkulm will shorten it, but head’s up for last train down at Brienzer Rothorn with the later start.

  44. We are looking at possibly coming over to try the Hardergrat around the last week of September. Is this traditionally a good time to climb or is it getting a bit late in the season? How is the weather around that time of year?

    It looks like the last train leaves Rothorn at 2:28pm? Is that right or am I mis-reading the timetable? If so I’m assuming we may have to start around midnight the day before to allow a safe amount of time so we don’t miss the train.

    Any other tips we should know before we look to book our trip?

    1. Post

      Fall can be the best time of the year in the Alps, when the weather is good, it’s great, but when it is bad it’s pretty bad. I’m not sure about the train times, best to check their website. For other trips, explore our site’s pages for the Jungfrau Region; Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald.

  45. Just want to say thanks to Dan for putting up such great information. Despite living on the border to Switzerland, I never knew about this hike until I stumbled across this page six months ago.

    Did the hike last Saturday, from downtown Interlaken to downtown Brienz. A little additional information:

    – As expected, the hike was hot in August. But with a little intermittent cloud cover and some wind, it was bearable.

    – The main trail from the Brienzer Rothorn down to Brienz was about as good as one could hope for from a little-used, 6,000 foot descent (except for one frustrating uphill section). If your knees are still in decent shape by the time you reach the Rothorn, it’s a cruise.

  46. Can this trip be done in 2 days? If so, are there locations along the trail that you can wild camp? Ideally we would do this as a 1 day trek, but with 10K feet of elevation gain over the course of a day, it might be a bit of a tough push.

  47. Hi

    I am in Interlaken and would like to do some uncovered part of hardgret on Monday. Is it possible after Saturday rain ?? I can’t do the whole so where should I start and end to return by 5 pm and see exposed part.


    1. Post
  48. Hi,

    My wife and I will be in Interlaken on the 17th and are wanting to hike the Hardergrat from Harder Kulm to the Lambachalp bailout. Is this part of the trail still good to hike this time of year? Do you know how long this portion of the hike would be?

    Thank You,


    1. Post
  49. Hi,
    I was hoping to hike the Hardergrat from Harder Klum to the Lambachalp bailout. Will this still be possible in the beginning of november?

    Thank you

    1. Post

      It might be, it just depends on the weather at this point. There is a lot of snow right now on that north side.

  50. Hi! I’m so captivated by this climb and the stunningly breathtaking views. I’m coming from Australia in early July 2018, want to do this so badly but not sure if it’ll be too challenging and too long. You mentioned bail out options, can I say reach the ridge, follow it for an hour or so and then return back down the way I came up? Would that still offer amazing views? We’ll be staying in Lausanne so it’s an hour or two to drive there, which makes for a long day, desperate to do this trail but won’t make the whole way or time duration by any means. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thank you!

    1. Post

      Your best bet is to go up from the north side, from Lombachalp, then hike Augstmatthorn to Suggiture and back down. This is the easiest, and most popular, way to see the ridgeline.

    2. Hey Annie,

      I did an abbreviated version from the south side last August. I had no hiking/climbing experience, but like you said, had to see the views from the ridge. I’m also not all that great with heights and didn’t trust myself to venture west of Augstmatthorn…although next time I will.

      I walked from downtown Interlaken to Ringgenberg and shot up on the Graaggetor Trail. If you’re staying in Interlaken just take the train over. I like to walk, but this was a time waster and kind of dumb of me in hindsight. I was deciding between heading up via Harder Kulm or Graaggetor and eventually landed on Graagetor because it sounded like it was less traveled and “touristy”. I didn’t see a single soul for the 3 or so hours it took me to get to the ridge. Was actually kind of cool. However, I was solo and swore I heard a roar at one point but chalked it up to my exhausted mind playing tricks on me. I think it’s considered steeper than some of the other paths up, and I needed multiple breaks, some after only 20-30 steps. Cardio wise, I’m a runner and in pretty good shape, but this thing kicked my butt in terms of leg strength.

      I’d say it’s wooded about 2/3 of the way up. You get to traverse through a couple rock faces which is cool and then you hit the ridge. If I remember correctly, it was about an hour or so west to Augstmatthorn from there. Once I “summited” Augstmatthorn, I doubled back and went to Harder Kulm, which took about 2.5 hours I think, had a beer on the viewing deck and headed down in the train. Round trip about 8.5 hours with a walk from Interlaken, plenty of pictures, and hanging out taking in the scenery.

      First time in the Alps and it absolutely blew my mind, but have to imagine even vets are impressed with what the ridge has to offer. Hope that helps if you end up staying around Interlaken.

    3. Annie, I agree with Admin and Tony on this. Harder Kulm to where the trail from Ringgenberg comes up has trees on both sides for most of the route. You can’t really see too much until where the Ringgenberg trail comes up. Next time I go I will take this trail up.

  51. Hi there,

    I’m hoping to do this hike at least sometime in my life!! I’m coming in March with my best friend but I’ve heard it’s still snowy/winter during that time. Is this trail still hike-able in mid-late March? Or are there any other great hikes that can be done during this time?

    Thanks so much!

    1. Post

      Hi Annie, Huge apologies for the late response! Yes, March is much too early and the trail will not be possible! Most all mountain trails in the Alps will be covered in snow in March. You have to return in the summer months!

  52. Hi! I want to hike hardergrat trail next year sometime in August or September, would either months be okay to hike this trail? I am a Filipino, I live in the Philippines. I have been hiking since 2015. I plan to hike this trail alone and so I am planning this really well. What would be your best advice for me hiking this alone? Thank you very much for your response.

  53. Hi,

    my girlfriend and me are planning to do this trail in the last weeks of june this summer. We are good runners but aren’t very experienced with hiking in the mountains, so is it recommended to stop in the half and decend via Blasenhubel to Oberreid? Or will we regret it that we didn’t finish it all the way?
    I also read something about an expensive trainride (CHF88?) from Rothorn down to Brienz itself. That’s also a reason we are thinking to stop in the middle.
    What would you recommend?

Leave a Reply to Giesla Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *