Tschugga south west flank – my alpine hiking season opener

Published by 360 Pro , 17 April 2009, 21h51.

Region: World » Switzerland » St.Gallen
Date of the hike:15 April 2009
Hiking grading: T5 - Challenging High-level Alpine hike
Climbing grading: II (UIAA Grading System)
Geo-Tags: CH-SG   Alvier Gruppe 
Access to start point:cff logo Sargans
Access to end point:cff logo Sargans

As many hikrs know, the south and southwest walls of the mountains around the Gonzen are snow free very early in the season. When I looked at them a week ago when riding by in the train, I saw, that most of the snow was gone already. Since the weather forecast promised really warm weather again for this day I decided to explore the Tschugga south west flank.

The description of the route can be found on Alpin_rise’s page, which Delta did as well(see here). Rise's description is pretty detailed and rather clear. There are also path traces almost all the way and the route is quite logical as he already said.

I do have a few remarks though:
  • The general direction after Vorderspina is towards Rundchopf, but bypassing it on the eastern side (which is also described in the SAC guide). It then goes even further east and up to a rock face. This short rock face is easiest to climb close to the ridge further west again. From there it's basically just steep uphill until you more or less automatically run into the steel rope.
  • I did not find any iron rod shortly before the saddle east of Rundchopf, like Alpin_Rise described, but that passage was still covered with some snow, so it’s probably still below some snow.
  • T6 or not? If you use the steel rope to climb the last 30 meters, I would definitely rate it only a T5, but even if you don’t use the rope as an aid, I personally didn’t think it was all that difficult. The mentioned climbing in the 3rd degree is very much eased, since there are knee pines left and right to which you can hold onto.
  • There's a "Wandbuch" at the beginning of the steel rope.
  • It’s not absolutely necessary to make the 1400 meters in altitude in less than two hours, you can make it a full day hike and just take it easy :-)

For my way back to the train station, I decided to walk down via Steinersäss and P.1438 to Hinterspina. The north facing slopes still had a considerable amount of snow and sometimes I sank into the wet snow almost up to my hips. I was definitely glad that I brought my gaiters along. As soon as I got to the more south facing slopes again (at around 1400m) the path was snow free again. From Hinterspina I then followed the marked path back to cff logo Sargans via Cholgrueb – Twirri – Stutz and Ober-Heiligkreuz.

cff logo Sargans – Ober-Heiligkreuz – Talid – Vorderspina – Rundchofpf (east of it) – Tschugga – Steinersäss – P.1438 – Hinterspina – Cholgrueb – Twirri – Stutz - Ober-Heiligkreuz - cff logo Sargans

Hike partners: 360


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2 Dec 11
Djebel al Tschugga · Polder

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