Via Ahorn and Grafenberg Lakes to the Grafenbergalm "Am Stein"
moderate Water hikes · Haus-Aich-Gössenberg
The abundance of water makes this hike along the fringes of the karst mountains of the Dachstein Group so interesting. The Dachstein actually drains below ground, mostly to the N into the Salzkammergut; only in the Silberkar, the Luser and close to the Gradenbach do we actually encounter surface water from the Dachstein. Leaving from the P, we embark on a 40-minute hike to the Jagdhaus and Gradenbach Waterfall. We continue with a steep section interspersed with rock, through a high forest above the deep canyon cut by the Gradenbach, continuously uphill until we reach beautifully situated Ahornsee.
This lake is almost a perfect circle, nestled in a basin surrounded by steep rock faces and a sparse forest of larch. We now continue our hike up, this time to the Grafenbergsee, with the many larch trees now joined by gnarled evergreen Swiss pine. To the N the lake is embraced by a bright wall of limestone, along the top of which runs the hiking path to the Stoderzinken. We now have just one more steep stretch ahead of us, before we reach the green, gently undulating pastures of the Grafenbergalm, where Bodo Hell, the cowherd, looks after the cattle, horses and goats grazing there. At this point, the Dachstein Glacier comes into view for the first time, while the magical diversity of alpine flowers makes for quite a contrast with the ancient larch and pine trees in this peaceful, hill-country setting. We will return along our original route.
trail conditions: forest road, forest track, alpine paths