Leistchamm Trilogy, Nägeliberg and Schäären

Published by 360 Pro , 14 September 2008, 19h02.

Region: World » Switzerland » St.Gallen
Date of the hike:10 September 2008
Hiking grading: T6 - Difficult High-level Alpine hike
Climbing grading: II (UIAA Grading System)
Geo-Tags: CH-SG   Churfirsten 
Access to start point:cff logo Arvenbüel, Arven
Access to end point:cff logo Starkenbach Seilbahn Selun

I’ve been on all three Leistchamm before but never on all of them on the same day. For this day it was my main goal and then afterwards I wanted to decide what to do depending on the weather and mood.

As so often before I started my hike in Arvenbüel going up to (Hinter- or Amdener-) Leistchamm on the marked route via Röh – Looch – First. When I got out of the bus in Arvenbüel it rained harder than expected, after 15 minutes it stopped raining, after First the rocks were almost dry and on Leistchamm the sun was shining!

From Hinter Leistchamm I went down in the east flank. Instead of taking the route, which is described in the SAC guide (the second obvious groove), I decided to take a little detour north because the mentioned groove was very wet and slippery (T4+).

While walking towards Mittler Leistchamm I saw a groove leading the way up to Mittler Leistchamm close to the west ridge, which looked “easy enough” to climb and so I did (about 20m T6, II). In fact this drop of about 20 meters which spans more or less all over the northern side of Mittler Leistchamm, can be climbed in many places, the easiest is described in the SAC guide and is pretty much in the middle, a mossy fragile matter though. Even on the east side one can climb this drop in a little couloir, which is not too difficult (see this picture). The remaining last part to the summit after the drop doesn’t pose any difficulties.

After I came down from the Mittler Leistchamm (the same way I went up) I snuck around the corner, because whenever I’ve been in this area I’ve almost always seen chamois or ibexes. To my disappointment all the sneaking and being quiet was for the birds, because today there wasn’t any game there. So I put my camera back into it’s case and kept walking up towards Vorder Leistchamm. All of a sudden I heard some noise and when I looked up towards Glattchamm I saw 3 rather young ibexes maybe 30 meters away from me observing me. (They probably watched me for a long time and were laughing at me trying to sneak around the corner…). Anyway, they were not afraid at all and didn’t even whistle (or whatever you call the sound they make when they are alarmed), they were also kind enough to pose for some pictures :-)

I then continued to Vorder Leistchamm and the Steinmannli south of it. Since the clouds started rolling in again, I decided to continue along the ridge towards the Churfirsten. The easiest way down to Gocht is not obvious when you come from above, but if you look for the last rather big knee pine on the right side before a drop of about 20m, you’ll find a moderately easy way (T5, II) down on the right side of this knee pine.

From Gocht I went up to Nägeliberg on the easiest route which is only a T4 (see picture of the route here): From Gocht I first followed the ridge for a short while then heading towards the obvious grass/rubble channel to its end, then following a grass band back to the ridge, and finally via the south flank of the foresummit to the saddle between the Foresummit and up to the cross.

On Nägeliberg it started raining again. After walking over to Schäären along the ridge, a cold wind started blowing and the rain got rather intense, so I decided to go down to Tisch in the north flank of Schäären and then walk along the Toggenburger Höhenweg to Alp Vorder Selun. Of course the sun came back out as soon as I was at Hinter Selun. Anyway since there was a Kistenbahn (Seilbahn Selun) down to Starkenbach in less than 30 minutes, I took the way down which was easiest on my knees.

Arvenbüel - Röh – Looch – First – Hinter Leistchamm – Mittler Leistchamm – Vorder Leistchamm – Gocht – Nägeliberg – Schäären – Tisch – Alp Vorder Selun

Notice: after September first the Kistenbahn only runs 3 times per day at 9, 13 and 16:30! Phone numbers: 071 999 34 87 or 079 537 77 20

Hike partners: 360


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Comments (7)

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Lu3418 says: Danke!
Sent 16 September 2008, 13h06
Danke für deinen guten und ausführlichen Bericht von diesem schönen Teil der Churfirstenkette. Die gleiche Tour habe ich im Sept. 07 gemacht. Eine schöne und einsame Tour, wo man kaum Leute antrifft. Schön deine Tierfotos, ich hab sie nur von weitem gesehen. Die von dir beschriebene Stufe am mittleren Leistkamm kam mir auf Anhieb zu steil vor, sah dann aber dass sie doch nicht so "gäch" ist, was sich dann auch bewahrheitete.
Von wegen Steinmannli, dieses kleine hat mir besonders gefallen im Abstieg vom Vorderen Leistchamm in die Ghocht, im Hintergrund der Nägeliberg.
Liebe grüsse
Lukas alias Lu3418
P.S. nah wie häng ich jetzt da das Foto an.Na vielleicht gehts.

360 Pro says: RE:Danke!
Sent 16 September 2008, 16h17
Danke für den Kommentar und das Foto vom kleinen Steinmannli, welches Du mir geschickt hast. Wie Du ja inzwischen weisst, hat 360 dieses kleine Steinmannli gebaut und dort einen hikr-Schatz versteckt...
Gruss, 360

Delta Pro says: Mittler Leistchamm
Sent 16 September 2008, 14h09
The "easiest" access to Mittler Leistchamm as shown in the SAC-Guide and on your picture is actually not the easiest one. During my first visit of this cute little peak an Ibex showed me were to go. This ascent is only a moderate T5. It is well visible on your picture: You go up the grassy slope on the left hand of your route and then cross a drop of only about five meters to the right in order to reach the grass again.

360 Pro says: RE:Mittler Leistchamm
Sent 16 September 2008, 16h55
Interesting, I'll try the "ibex route" the next time I'm there...

Just a minor correction: My picture you mention doesn't actually show the "easiest" access to Mittler Leistchamm according to the SAC guide. It is only the easiest access of the NE flank of Mittler Leistchamm (SAC: Man kann auch durch die Nordostwand aufsteigen (verschiedene Varianten, die nordöstliche, unterste ist am leichtesten [II]). (BTW: I didn't do it on the hike above, but on my hike here. I gave it a T5+/II then.)

The easiest access according to the SAC guide is in the NW flank: "Der einfachste Gipfelzugang befindet sich auf der Nordwestseite des Berges, hundert Meter von der Scharte im Westgrat entfernt." and I don't think you can see this route on my picture.

Unfortunately I don't have any good pictures of the NW flank of Mittler Leistchamm, which would show the different routes there, but I'll make sure I'll take some the next time I'm there...


360 Pro says: RE:Mittler Leistchamm
Sent 16 September 2008, 16h57
PS: Since I'm at it - another minor correction... in your report about the first visit I just saw that you talk about "Hinter Leistchamm" when you most likely mean "Vorder Leistchamm" (I know it's confusing, because if you come from Amden the first one is Hinter and the last one is Vorder, it's the same with Amden Vorderdorf...)

Delta Pro says: RE:Mittler Leistchamm
Sent 17 September 2008, 08h28
Thanks, I should change that - I'm always getting a bit confused in this region ;-)
The access mentioned in the SAC is indicated on a black-white pic therein, isn't it? I suppose I did this one during my ascent in 2005.
By the way: Mittler Leistchamm would be a good place to put a (hikr) summit book.

360 Pro says: RE:Mittler Leistchamm
Sent 17 September 2008, 22h11
Trust me you're not the only one who gets confused about Vorder and Hinter...

Yes it is a black & white picture of the route in the SAC guide. (I don't want to infringe any copyright so I won't put a copy of it on the web, but I'll make sure to take a good picture the next time I'll go). Since the SAC guide mentions "verschiedene Varianten" in the east flank, I actually think your suggestions isn't all that far off, so maybe I'll explore that too.

And yes I actually think so too: the Mittler Leistchamm would deserve a "Gipfelbuch", as of last Wednesday there wasn't one there yet - any volunteers out there?

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