Map: Wanderkarte Pilatus 1:25'000
easy accessible from two sides: By cogwheel railway from
Alpnachstad (world's steepest), or
by gondolas and cable car from Kriens. At Fraekmuent there is a summer Rodelbahn
(toboggan run) where not only kids have
Krienseregg is a popular recreational area with easy walking tracks, many
fireplaces, children's playground.
Pilatus has also many popular hiking trails and three main tracks from
Fraekmuent to the top, all of them pretty steep.
|The Bandweg across the layers of rocks. This is a track for experienced
|Gsaessweg to the left after leaving the
cable car station.|
|Heitertannliweg to the right after
|Mittagguepfi for those who prefer the
tranquility. The tour here
starts in beautiful Eigental.|
Sometimes one or the other track may be closed, due to damages caused
be slides or rock falls.
|Zug-Luzern-Kriens (train, bus)
|Kriens-Krienseregg-Fraekmuent (cable car)
|Krienseregg-Kriens (cable car)
|Kriens-Luzern-Zug (bus, train)
By gondolas to Fraekmuent:
At Luzern railway station there are bus services to Kriens (Bus
no 1: bus stop Linde Pilatus), where
it's a short walk to the cable car station. A customer parking for private
cars is available as well (toll).
When arriving at
Krienseregg, the cabin is moved
over to the second part of the ride - a fascinating system (ticket check on
Top of page
At Fraekmuent (from here a cable car runs to the very top), turning left we choose the
road for alp and stables Fraekmuent. After passing the church (services:
May to October, Sun 10 AM) and crossing the Rodelbahn the track is on the right.
The entry into the mountain track is on the verge of a little ravine (near
the upper end of a steel rope). Although the track up there is marked (sticks
and rocks marked with
white/red/white), in the growing grass and among the cattle it's not always easy
to recognize it. But once up there we will be on a clearly marked track.
soon it gets steep. At some places there are ropes to get a grip and sometimes we have to
climb a few meters. After half an hour or so on entering Nauen, the view changes completely.
front is the naked wall of Pilatus, to the right rocks and slate are dominant. Often there
are some ibex around. In autumn we can hear the bang when the males are
fighting with each other. Finally the track ascends zigzagging through the
slate up to the little chapel Klimsen.
From here it's a rocky walk up to the peak and we
may already hear the whistling of a Dohle (a black bird, domestic to the
At the top there are some tracks to the very top of Mt Pilatus, the
Esel (donkey) and paths on the rims of the rocks to Oberhaupt and Tomlishorn.
When eating outside on the Restaurant terrace we will be joined by the real
residents of Pilatus, the "Pilatus Dohlen". They are used to
getting something eatable from the many guests. Some of the birds may even be thieves,
so watch your food.
For the way back to Krienseregg we use the same track, but there are several
alternatives as well:
- At the Klimsen chapel the track to the
left (Heitertannliweg), is leading to Fraekmuentegg and cable car station directly.
- The track to the right is leading to Gsaess - Fraekmuent - Krienseregg
and Gschwaend - Hergiswil.
- After about 20 Minutes on the Gsaess track we reach the turn off for
Gsaess. Staying on the track we'll reach Gschwaend (Restaurant and
running down to Brunni). From here we may proceed to Vorder Rengg and on to Hergiswil.
The ascent from Gschwaend to Fraekmuent would be about 20 Minutes. Before,
at the alp stable Fraekmuent the track to the right will lead to Muelimaes
The popular descent from Fraekmuent to Krienseregg is by Muelimaes -
Muelimaes Ski hut.
Fraekmuent-Muelimaes: some 40 Min. See www.muelimaes.ch
This track is a bit longer than Gsaessweg. To Lauelenegg the track
is flat, then it's descending to Oberlauelen.
From Oberlauelen the excellent track is marked by sticks and signs on
rocks. Soon we're on the steep climb to Klimsen.
Slope of Rodelbahn, in center Hiking track to Krienseregg
|On the Hiking track from Fraekmuent alp to Krienseregg
|Some time ago, there was a promotion for
"Sbrinz" cheese, a tasty cheese, comparable perhaps to old
matured cheddar. The alp Krienseregg was to be renamed Sbrinz land. But as
other Swiss too, the locals were not easily to be convinced, why suddenly
there should be a change of name. Near the Krienseregg station there is a
little monument from the promotion act.
Sbrinz (AOC) is the protected Trademark for this special
cheese. It is being produced in the six Cantons of Central Switzerland
and in two regions in Aargau and one in St. Gallen.
Start for this tour is Gantersei parking in Eigental.
A public bus (Postauto, 71) is in service all year, it departs Luzern
near railway station, time for journey approx. 35 Minutes. From end loop "Eigental Talboden" it's
some additional 20 Minutes on a hiking trail to Gantersei.
Daily service: (Time table 2003)
Dep. Luzern, near railway station: 9:20AM and 10:55AM. (May
31st through Oct 19th on weekends additional service
Dep. Eigental for Luzern railway station: daily 16:10PM and 17:35PM.
The name "Mittagguepfi" (~"midday
knoll") derives from the fact that the knoll is the clock for the
Malters area: at noon the sun would be positioned exactly above this
|Mittagguepfi-Oberalp-former Pilatus lake-Bruendlen-
The first part of the road to Unter Lauelen (Retaurant) is
virtually flat, along the river Ruemlig, on a lovely hiking trail. Only at
the end there is a slight ascent.
This half hour stroll from the parking
to the Restaurant should be quit acceptable for
After Unterlauelen the trail proceeds along the driveway (private
and the river.
After crossing the bridge we're on a ascending forest road. The mountain track for
Bruendlen turns off some 300
m after the first bend, on the right (white-red-white mark on a rock).
A warning sign reminds on the danger from falling rocks.
On my tour on the July 11th suddenly a couple of rocks came
plummeting down, probable cause some ibex's high up.
At Bruendlen we leave the hazard zone.
There are two options now: to the left the track along the flank of the
mountain, to the right towards the former Pilatus lake and Oberalp. Let's
choose the track to the left, on the way back we'll then use the other
After the climb we're enjoying the walk in alpine vegetation. Reaching
the alp meadows there are two options again: direct track to the knoll, or
the short detour by Felli.
I chose the Felli detour: Hikers not keen on walking above an abyss
would prefer the other route.
All the others will love the walk along narrow tracks from Felli to the
foot of Mittagguepfi, the open view to the South.
Absolutely lovely is the little well along the trail: about the size of Geranium pot, it delivers
fresh Pilatus Mineral water, directly from the source, without carbonic
acid! The little sanctum is well protected by a giant protruding rock
The last part of the track crosses the alp meadow, finally the last
ascent to the top is reached.
Resting and lunching up there, the Pilatus Dohlen
are joining in too. Depending on the age they are begging more or less briskly,
or might even steel some of the juicer parts of the lunch.
For the way back I selected the track by Oberalp, the one to the North
of the former Pilatus lake.
Leaving Oberalp hut, after a short climb on a track through wooded area the ridge
with a undisturbed view is reached. The track follows the ridge and
ends with the descent to
Bründlen. This last part is bit steeper. Caused by pine cones, needles and some
broken limbs may be a bit slippery.
The forest track can hardly be missed: frequently there are
white-red-white marks on the trees.
The last part from Bruendlen to Unterlauelen, Gantersei, Eigental is
the same as on the way up.