You can begin in Kandersteg or in Wiler. Kandersteg is easier to get to by train from Interlaken. If you have a car, you can take it through the mountain on the car train (a train you drive onto that takes you through a tunnel to the other side of the mountain for 25 CHF), and drive to Wiler. The hike from Kandersteg is definitely steeper going up, whereas the hike up from Wiler is a bit more gradual.
We began in Wiler! From Wiler, there is a gondola that takes you up to Lauchernalp. You can buy the round trip, but of course, if you’re planning to do the whole pass hike, buy just the one way. In Lauchernalp, you can stop for a snack before your hike. Berghaus is a delicious little restaurant with an amazing view. Try the rosti!
The path up to the hut is super well marked, and really hard to lose. Crossroads and intersections are marked with signs, and the rest of the trail is marked with red and white paint. There may be snow, so prepare for that. There were a few little glacial run off creeks we had to cross, some were more like waterfalls. All the other hikers we passed had hiking poles with them — not a bad idea.
A bed at the Löschenpass Hütte is available for reservation by phone. Their standard rate is 70 CHF per person, but that includes dinner and breakfast. The rooms are big dorms with bunk beds and lockers. We were lucky to be there on a slow night, and had a room to ourselves.
The beginning of the hike towards Kandersteg is a bit treacherous, down what felt like a sheer rock face, through numerous snow drifts, and over countless glacial run off creeks. All I could think was how happy I was to not be hiking up this side. The valley was totally beautiful. It was huge, carved away from a melting glacier over probably millions of years. The mountains on either side were tall, steep, and craggy. We were surrounded by waterfalls and wild flowers. It was breathtaking. (You can read the story about my experience on this hike here).
Once you arrive at the road, you are in Selden. From here, you can take a shuttle bus to Kandersteg, or you can hike. The hike is very beautiful, super flat, and all around very pleasant. It does add another 2 or 3 hours onto the day. I am sure the drive through the valley would be just as beautiful.
Once you arrive in Kandersteg, the train will bring you back to Goppenstein, and from there, a bus will take you to Wiler. The train runs at the 42 minutes of every hour (1:42pm, 2:42pm, etc.) and the bus is timed perfectly, so you should not have to worry about missing it.
For more information about the Löschenpass Hütte, the pass itself, and the hike, look to the Kandersteg International Scout Centre (KISC). They are a great resource for information about the shuttle, and if you book through them, they may be able to get you a cheaper rate at the hut! Check their website for more info.
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