If you’re in the neighborhood of Flims / Laax or simply looking for an easy winter hike, then this trail is one to consider. It’s easy and has such breathtaking views that I seem to have forgotten to take enough pictures for this post. Oops! If you’re after a larger affair, this hike can also easily be extended (see below for more info). So let’s get started.
First, this hike starts in Laax and ends in Flims. Flims and Laax are two neighboring villages which share a massive ski resort called ‘Flims Laax Falera’. They can only be reached by car or bus as no trains go to these villages.
If you’re on the train from Zurich then you’ll need to switch onto a yellow Post bus at Chur for a 30 min ride to the Laax GR, Bergbahnen bus stop. From here the Laax Murschetg cable car station is a very short walk away. You’ll need to buy a ticket that takes you up from Laax Murschetg to Vorab Gletscher and then down from La Siala to Flims. If you’re uncertain then just tell the person at the counter that you are there to do the La Siala winter hike and they should know which ticket to give you.
With your ticket in hand get ready for a series of very scenic cable cars to the start of trail! The names of the stops on the way are entertaining. In order of travel, you’ll start at Murschetg, pass through Crap Sion Gion, then Crap Masegn, Fuorcla and finally arrive at Vorab Gletscher. Try pronouncing all of those with a straight face.
The trail starts high up at 2570 m and is a short ridge hike. It’s a flat ridge so no worries about steep paths and big drop offs – this hike is mostly about the views. Hiking at the top of a ridge means you’ll have a full view of the mountains in every direction! Normally, walking at such heights in the winter whilst avoiding avalanche risk can be tricky and it’s why hiking trails in ski resorts like this one are popular – the resort actively manages the risks and the paths. These winter walking trails are also well marked with purple poles and signs. They’re also packed down, so you don’t sink in the snow with every step. So, once you’ve got off those cable cars get ready for an hour and a half of breathtaking views. For us the time flew by quickly as we gawped at the views around each corner.
Although the altitude gain is minimal, 250m to be precise, it may feel like more effort at this altitude for some of you. The oxygen is thinner so take it easy and enjoy the views! At the La Siala end, the trail ends just 90 meters below the peak of Laaxer Stöckli. We saw snowshoe footprints from fellow hikers who seemed to have just ploughed their way up to the top in the snow. It might be doable but we weren’t feeling it, so we skipped that and slowly made our way down on the cable car from La Siala to Sogn Martin.
Not quite ready to head home, we grabbed a drink at Sogn Martin to relax and enjoy the views around. Eventually we made our way onto the winter hiking trail number 110 towards the middle cable station of Scansinas. It’s a short but compulsory downhill kilometer to Scansinas on foot. There doesn’t seem to be an alternative way to get down. At Scansinas, we hopped back on to the final cable car down to Flims where the stop for the bus back to Chur was just two minutes away.
And so there you have it! A breathtaking winter trail in the high alps. Don’t let the description of the route to and from the trail intimidate you into thinking it’s too difficult. The cable cars may sound complex but once you get on the first one it will all make sense. And if you’re in doubt the cable car staff at each stop or station will be happy to help you out.
In the end it’s an absolutely breathtaking journey and a gorgeous hike so we’d day, “go for it!”. For most of us, it’ll be better than being a Sunday couch potato!
Practical Information for this Hike
|Start||Bus Stop: Laax GR Bergbahnen. From here the cable car station is signposted as ‘Bergbahnen’. |
Cable Car – bottom: Laax Murschetg (Talstation)
Cable Car – top: Vorab Gletscher
|End||Cable Car – top: La Siala|
Cable Car – bottom: Flims Dorf (Talstation Plaun). From here the bus stop is a 2 min walk away.
Bus Stop: Flims Dorf, Bergbahnen
|Altitude||250m ↑ 10m ↓|
|Season||Winter (Dec – Apr)|
|Peak||2807m – highest point is at La Siala|
|Public Transport||To start of trail: 2.5 hr from Zurich; 1h 15 min from Chur|
|Parking||We’d recommend public transport as this is a one way hike. If you do prefer coming by car then we would suggest parking in Laax where there is apparently ample space for cars. When you finish the hike you’ll need to grab a bus from Flims for a short ride back to the car in Laax. Buses run several times each hour. Check www.sbb.ch for the most up to date timings. |
Car Park Address: Rocksresort Parking Laax, Via Murschetg 632, 7032 Laax
Nagens to Vorab to La Siala Loop – 7km, ± 700 m ↑ 50 m ↓, 3h, medium difficulty
For those of you looking for a longer hike we’d recommend adding a section of winter walking from Nagens to Vorab from where you can continue on the Vorab to La Siala ridge hike we describe above in this post. Note, to get to Nagens you’ll need to take the cable car up from Flims and not Laax. This may be an advantage if you’re coming by car as you start and end in Flims.