Rautispitz Trosweg + Wiggis Nordgrat

Published by Stijn , 2 August 2017, 22h27.

Region: World » Switzerland » Glarus
Date of the hike:19 July 2017
Hiking grading: T5+ - Challenging High-level Alpine hike
Climbing grading: II (UIAA Grading System)
Geo-Tags: CH-GL   Oberseegruppe 
Time: 7:30
Height gain: 1500 m 4920 ft.
Height loss: 1500 m 4920 ft.

The Trosweg onto the Rautispitz saw a couple of Hikr ascents in 2015 after PStraub *first wrote about it. Since then, things have gotten quiet again about this route. The Trosweg had stayed on my ToDo-list, though. When looking for a route not too far from Zürich and preferably shadowy for a hot summer day, this north-sided scramble came to mind again. (PStraub has just published *a new Hikr report as well, but my own ascent predates his by two weeks; sorry for the delayed report...)

From the parking at the Obersee restaurant, we hike up the narrowing meadows of the Niedersee Alp. For a brief moment, there's a well-maintained path leading up the steeper terrain at ca. 1150m. From 1300m upwards, it is preferable to stay directly along the foot of the escarpment that comes down from Furggeli, instead of staying in the more obvious gully. We had already read this advise as well, but still we miss the best route and have to do a traverse through wet bushes to get from the gully back to the better path along the escarpment. About 20m below the Furggeli saddle, we turn right. A long, ascending traverse (mostly pathless, first through grass and bushes, then over scree, and finally over some nice limestone plates) brings us to the start of the Trosweg. It's hard to imagine that there's a scrambling route starting here, but the starting point is still easy to find, as it is located directly where Alp Tros slopes reach their highest point along the foot of the Rautispitz north face. The approach can also be done via the Rappliwald instead of via Furggeli; this would probably be the "less adventurous" (i.e. slightly easier) option.

Blue markings and untrustworthy (!) cables make the Trosweg relatively easy to follow. After a short, slippery scramble up a first step, the route does a longer westbound traverse over easier terrain. Climbing up the next rock barrier is the crux of the route. The cable hangs loose and directly down. We ignore the cable at first and opt for a line coming more diagonally from the right. We reach the cable again below a steep chimney. The exposed and somewhat slippery scrambling in UIAA grade II is a little more challenging than expected. The Trosweg is certainly a high-end T5 as far as I'm concerned, maybe even bordering on T6. After the crux, the terrain becomes easier again. There's more and more grass and only shorter bits of scrambling in the upper parts of the Trosweg. We spot a group of ibex high up on the Rautispitz, but they have disappeared by the time we reach the normal hiking path, shortly below the summit.

After a lunch break on the Rautispitz, we continue with the Wiggis north ridge (T5). The cables are more trustworthy here, which is a good thing, because they are quite useful. A steep scramble directly upwards is followed by a picturesque traverse to the west, where a grassy gully gives access to the summit cross at P. 2275. After visiting the actual summit at P. 2281 as well, we descend on the white-blue-white path (steep, muddy and half-overgrown) to the spectacular viewpoint of Höchnase. The village of Netstal is baking is sun 1800m lower, while even we are happy to have a slight breeze to cool us down a little.

We traverse on the marked hiking path through the Wiggis east face (T4-, fixed chains). From the saddle, we descend a little on the hiking path towards the Rautialp. As soon as this path reaches more grassy terrain, we walk across to the more direct Rautispitz-Obersee hiking path. This descent is surprisingly demanding (T4-). The muddy, half-overgrown path is interrupted by countless slippery (and sometimes badly visible) limestone formations. The final crux at ca. 1650m is a short, steep scramble, secured by a fixed cable. It's surprising that this path is still marked white-red-white. I've seen several white-blue-white routes that are easier.

A refreshing swim in the Obersee provides the icing on the cake.

Hike partners: Nobis, Stijn

Click to draw, click on the last point to end drawing


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Comments (5)

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Stijn says: RE:
Sent 3 August 2017, 08h11
Thanks. That was a type of course. ;)

Stijn says: RE:
Sent 3 August 2017, 08h11

Kaj says: Super-gsi
Sent 3 August 2017, 21h21
Hoi Stijn,
you have, what I need - a GPS-track.
Thanks for your great job, ciao Kaj

Stijn says: RE:Super-gsi
Sent 3 August 2017, 21h33
Thanks Kaj, glad to be able to help. Good luck with your tours.

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