HIKING TO DOSSEN HUT VIA ROSENLAUI GLACIER

The Dossen Hut hike is an epic 19km T4 Difficulty route that starts off at Rosenlaui Glacier, leads you up to the mountain hut and down to Innertkirchen.

 

DOSSEN HUT HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The hike from Rosenlaui Hotel to Dossen Hut is just over 5km but the entire route takes 19km to end you at Innertkirchen.

Hike Duration: The suggested duration is about 8 hours from Rosenlaui Hotel to Dossen Hut and down to Innertkirchen. However, as you will see in this blog post, I did the hike in 5 hours but also had to run an extra 5km from Innertkirchen to Meiringen Train Station. So it is possible in less than 5 hours but likely it will take 5-10 hours for most hikers.

Hike Difficulty: The path is a blue and white alpine rating and has a number of exposed areas. There is cable and ladders wherever the trail is exposed. I’ve captured the T4 difficulty in my vlog below so you can see the technical moments.  1200m of incline to the hut from Rosenlaui Hotel is something many would consider difficult but after that, it is mostly downhill.

Hike Incline: Starting point at Hotel Rosenlaui: 1,356m – Dossen Hut: 2,663m – Innerkirchen: 630m

 

HOW TO GET TO DOSSEN HUT HIKE TRAILHEAD

The starting point for the Dossen Hut hike is the Rosenlaui Hotel. To get here you will need to take the train to Meiringen, then transfer to the bus and head to Rosenlaui Hotel bus stop. The bus will drop you directly at the front of the hotel and you then have blue and white signs pointing you to ‘Dossen SAC’ the whole way. You could also drive to Rosenlaui Hotel with ample parking available. Whichever way you plan to get there, just know your starting point is Rosenlaui Hotel.

I’ve attached my GPX map below, which you can download here for use on your Garmin, smartwatch or another app.

 

HOW TO BOOK A NIGHT AT DOSSEN HUT

In order to book a night (or more) at Dossen Hut, you will need to send an email, make a phone call or fill out the form on their website. They are not on other booking platforms, this is how the hut is booked.

To email Dossen Hut, you can contact them here: cyzwicky@bluewin.ch

To visit the website to make a booking you can do so here: www.dossenhuette.ch/

To make a booking via phone you can do so with this number: +41 (0) 33 971 44 94

 

MY DOSSEN HUT HIKE VLOG

While I still took lots of photos, on this hike I put my efforts into documenting the hike through this vlog. That means that in the T4 sections and lots of the downhill running the best viewing is in the vlog rather than the photos. It’s definitely worth a watch to see how the hike ended in the dark for me. You will soon see how I did the 24km route in 5 hours!

 

MY EXPERIENCE HIKING TO DOSSEN HUT

My day began in Interlaken so I caught the train to Meiringen and then transferred to a bus that took me up to Rosenlaui Glacier Hotel. The hike was signed from this point on with the blue and white Dossen tags. The Rosenlaui Hotel is a popular base for lots of hikes in the region and you can get lunch or have a toilet stop here.

 

ROSENLAUI GLACIER HIKE

I didn’t know it at the time but before I hiked up to Dossen Hut, I would head through and explore Rosenlaui Glacier Canyon. It turned out to be super cool and is more or less part of the trail anyway. It costs $7 to enter the canyon or you can walk around it and meet the trail at the top. I think it’s worth heading in for a look although it is just 15-20 minutes worth of path.

 

The canyon has been created through millions of years of erosion from the glacier and subsequent river. When you are inside it becomes so much colder than outside and the spray from the waterfalls is blowing around. It’s a crazy section of the hike although the trail is cement with simple stairs and handrails making it very safe.

 

ROSENLAUI TO DOSSEN HUT HIKE

The trail spits you out of the canyon and meets up with the alternative route if you did decide to skip the canyon glacier. Now the trail sends you on a decent climb through the forest where if it’s sunny you will have no wind and be sweating a lot! I pushed pretty hard through this section until I emerged at the river, where I could see all the way up to Dossen Peak. Lots of people climb either Dossengrat or Dossen Peak but on this day, I was only heading to the Dossen Hut, which is still over 2600m above sea-level.

 

The trail now runs alongside the river before ascending through the gravel and rocks on the left of the trail. Here I met some Valais Sheep who you can see in my vlog above. This gravel section is consistently steep but not exposed until the trail leads you up onto a ridge. Take caution here as the drop is quite exposed.

 

Once at the top of the ridge you can look back along the valley you have just hiked with a small sense of achievement. You are only halfway to the hut at this point with a lot of bouldering and climbing to go. This is where the T4 difficulty kicks in with some ladders, cables and relatively easy bouldering is required. Again, you can check out some pretty cool videos in the vlog of this section to check if you are up for the challenge on deciding it isn’t a hike you are ready for.

 

I found that this section of the trail was the most fun as you had to consistently find your way up the boulders looking for the next blue and white painted marker. The views got better and better as you climbed up with the glacier now in full view. After 1 hour and 47 minutes, I reached the Dossen Hut and took a moment outside to enjoy the views before flying the drone over to the glacier and around the mountain hut. They serve their coffee in bowls at the Dossen Hut, that’s how coffee should be!

 

I arrived at the hut at around 5:30 pm and they were very concerned that I was hiking down and kept telling me I need to hurry up and leave. I had my headtorch and knew I was in for a session but their concern was genuine.

After my coffee, drone session, and panoramic view, I packed up and began to run down the mountain (refer to vlog). It was apparently meant to take 4 hours and 50 minutes to Innertkirchen, with about 14km left on my journey and just 2 hours of daylight. 

The trail down was gravel and I slid and ran my way down the slopes before it leveled out a bit. I ended u doing more than 2000m of decline on the way down as Inertkirchen is only 630m above sea-level.

 

About halfway to Innertkirchen it became dark and I had to run through the valley with just my headtorch. It was definitely an adventure! You could avoid that by starting earlier in the morning. The last train from Innertkirchen was at 9 pm, which I missed by half an hour so I had to run another 4.5 km to Meiringen to luckily catch the last train back to Interlaken.

Make sure you check the train timetables so you know what you are working with timewise. Some people also pre-book a taxi to pick them up at the end of the trail but I found you can just walk all the way to Innertkirchen train station rather than booking a taxi, which is a bit unnecessary for a few kilometers when you have already hiked 15km or so.

Staying at the hut overnight would rule out all of the hassles and mean you could enjoy a beautiful sunset, dinner, breakfast, and sunrise at the Dossen Hut.

 

Blog Comments

  1. Jackson, good and positive vibes only, remember πŸ˜‰
    I think we are a little like-minded in that aspect…

    Whether you accept it or not, you are also responsible for your blog posts, as I am for my comments. I did what I had to do as I felt responsible for your future readers of this entry to have a “maybe” more realistic description of what this hike involves – you seem to dismiss a little how challenging this can be for regular hikers who might read your post.

    It can be done? Of course. I did it. Ideal? Well, you loose a lot on the way down because you’re rushing, and you can’t take in the views that well because you’re also rushing and it’s getting dark… and you can get lost and injured because… well, you’re rushing and gps signal failure… But of course it can be done….

    Listen, you have my email. As far as I am aware, this issue is now in the past. I get your position, but I have mine too. Let’s stop this here, please.

    And enjoy Madeira!!! It’s such a great place with so much to offer, and very dear to me too πŸ˜‰

    Honestly, I do hope we cross paths sometime or share a journey at some point. To be frank, I think we would quickly move past this “misunderstanding” and quickly focus on the more pleasurable and exciting task of enjoying the hikes instead. Take care, and make the most of this journey πŸ˜‰

    1. I accept responsibility for my blog posts. I give as much information as I can. That doesn’t mean I am responsible for how you interpret that and also how you or others hike or act on the trail. There is a big difference. I can’t tell every single hiker how hard it can be for them personally without knowing them. So i show photos of difficult sections, put my maps, put my time, suggest a time for average hikers etc. etc. like no other blog or video about this hike. You then need to analyze and figure out for yourself what is possible. You never answered about why it took you 5 hours to get to Dossen Hut, which is 5km but this is probably why you ran late. I said to allow for 8 hours but that assumes you are moving at AT LEAST a pace of 2.5-kilometers per hour, which is FAR below an average hiking pace. That’s my logic and after reviewing the information in this post that I’ve provided, I’m confident I have shown enough details for people to make a decision based on their own. Regards, Jackson

  2. Hi Jackson,
    First of all, great work you have done here. It’s an amazing work with all these hikes, particularly in Interlaken, which is where I have been recently…

    However, and take it easy when you read this, but you publishing this one was a bit reckless on your side – it should come with big red warning letters warning people that IT IS NOT an easy hike at all. Even the video should have that warning often. And people should do it in two days, not one…

    Now, don’t get me wrong. This is a great hike – but for inexperienced people, people who like to think they are better than everyone, or even those that don’t fully read your post or skip your video on it, it’s a risk. A great risk. And the possibility of GPS signal failure may make this a tragic activity.

    I reached the Dossen hut at 3-4pm (having started the hike around 11am at the Rosenlaui hotel), and started going down walking around 4pm (I figured “screw that, there’s daylight until 9pm). It was an awesome bright and blue-sky day. The journey down, gets a little “challenging” at a point when you reach a place where they keep the cows.

    I am not into running, and unlike you, I wasn’t going to sprint (I like my knees). There were some parts where your gpx trail was taking me to places that didn’t offered much and away from the main trail I thought (this past the cow hut, and close to a stream/river) – at one point I was going down the river side as there was no clear path to follow, and thinking to myself that there was no way I was on the right path. GPS signal failure was an issue, and being in an area with poor network coverage didn’t help – now, I didn’t get scared, but when I see myself still kilometres away from Innertkirchen on the map in the phone, getting dark, and suspecting that I was getting off track without signal, I did get anxious… I checked the GPX signal several times and went back to where I fell “safer”, wasting up to 45minutes with this, at a moment of reducing daylight and looking to the GPX trail and thinking that there was still a long way to go, of several kilometers, to get to Innertkirchen train station or Meiringen walking….

    Eventually, I got onto the right path again, and was able to reach Urbachtal parkplatz around 9pm, just about to get dark.

    Now, at that time, you’re still asking for a 6km walk to Innertkirchen, but realistically, twice that to get to Meiringen as you would have missed the last train in Innertkirchen (this for someone who wants to just walk, not running).

    For any “normal” person after a long day of hiking it is just tooo much, and I would have never arrived to the train in Innertkirchen or Meiringen on time had I not relied on a taxi to take me there. This was also a fun moment, because when I first called, I got nowhere with the taxi person – he only spoke German, and did not understood any English. I was lucky someone parked at Urbachtal parkplatz was kind enough to call them and speak to the taxi guy in German for me, but others may not be as lucky….

    Well, it was a great day, and an awesome hike. But please, fill it up with prominent warning signs that it is a risky hike for being soooo long….

    Don’t think I am telling you off. You really have done an amazing job with this website, and you should think about maybe put it on a book. Have you also considered one post about all the gear you have used to take the photos and what photo imaging software you’ve used?

    I look forward to do some more of your suggestions posted here at a later time πŸ˜‰

    1. Hey mate,

      Glad you are enjoying my hiking guides πŸ™‚ I don’t take anything personally but I will share with you why my guide is not reckless but not following my advice in the guides will lead to you going out on a reckless adventure. I gave many tips that you haven’t followed here so that you could avoid my rushed run home. The main one was to start early in the morning which you didn’t do and subsequently missed the last train.

      Why did it take you 5 hours to reach Dossen Hut if you started at 11am and only reached the hut at 4pm? It’s only a 5-kilometer section?

      I stated that it is (in general) an 8-hour trip so starting at 11am is an indication that you plan to finish at 7pm at the earliest if everything goes well. That is assuming a 2 or 3-kilometer per hour pace.

      I can’t do much else than quite clearly provide all the details of my own journey but also how long it might take others. With all due respect you need to take responsibility for your own speed, own route, own hydration and own capabilities. When I did the hike, no-one provides me with a detailed blog post of the step-by-step guide, which bus to catch, how many liters of water to take. I provide my readers with as much information as I can but at the end of the day.. if they pack only two water bottles on a hot day for the Hardergrat hike it ain’t going to be my fault that they are thirsty. Or if someone doesn’t want to trail run because they are running late on their schedule they should have left earlier than 11 am so they can get the last train. I literally wrote in the blog ‘you could avoid that by starting earlier’ yet you only began at 11am. I gave the advice of how to avoid but you still started just before midday.

      I really go into so much detail with distances, difficulty, creating maps based on my exact GPS coordinates etc… only so much I can do other than to walk beside someone as a guide. I have to find out everything as I go with almost no tips for most of these hikes. I simply use Maps.me with no recommendations prior to the hike. Google Dossenhut and many other hikes and you will see no other blogs or a very basic overview. And I did leave Dossen Hut at 5pm… The hut warden asked if I’m sure but even he wasn’t that worried. Life is an adventure.. if you miss the last train, you will figure it out. If you run you might catch it if you don’t miss it. Not everything has to go to plan. If you don’t want to run, leave earlier right haha?

      1. Jackson, take it easy. We are both here just discussing something we both love doing so much, and frankly, I admire all the good work you have been putting doing these hikes πŸ˜‰

        You don’t have to take in the suggestions, but understand I made them in good faith. It’s up to you whether you listen or not. But from now on, I have a clean conscience about things. Future readers may not be so fortunate or even experienced as me or you…

        I am happy about my choices. I took responsibility for my planning, and I am aware of my limits. I can’t say I am at your level, but I am competent. I had things under “control” and I was able to deal with the “unexpected” all the time. But that was me – remember, you also have non experienced people reading your posts. Emphasizing how serious some parts of the hike are is never enough. Safety comes first πŸ˜‰

        Again, take it easy. I am talking to you as a fellow hiker, not to rubbish your work. You really have done a great job with all these posts πŸ˜‰

        1. Hey mate,
          You can’t expect to call me reckless for publishing a blog that had every piece of information you needed to hike Dossenhut and then be surprised if I comment back saying I don’t agree with your comment. I gave you the map, the time, the difficulty, photos of difficult parts, story of how I went wrong timewise, optional routes, option to stay overnight etc.. It’s the least reckless blog you will read because I show you all of the options. I never suggested you try and copy my exact route and timing.

          I do my best to explain the hikes and show what makes them difficult in photos rather than say ‘it’s easy’ or it’s hard’ or ‘5/10 difficulty’ like most hiking sites because thatis all relative to the person reading it. What’s easy for me might be hard for you or vice versa.

          I don’t really see what exactly was reckless about this blog when I clearly state that it will take you 8 hours and to start early in the morning. IF NOT, you should stay overnight at Dossenhut. Those are basically your options. I’ll always show my adventure but then make suggestions for the ‘average hiker’ but the reader needs to make some assessments for themselves. I don’t read a blog about Mount Everest by Kilian Jornet and think I can run-up to the peak in record time because he did.

          As I said, previously. I don’t take any of your comments personally, I am just clarifying why I write in the way I do and who it should help.

          Your suggestions were that for a normal person 8 hours is too much. Then don’t do it… Don’t get to the 7th hour and then blame the guy who wrote the blog. Surely you can see the logic there. I write how long it will take an average person and then you have to decide if that is a good trek for you. There’s not much more I can do when thousands of different people will read the blog.

          Regards and happy hiking.

          Jackson

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