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The pass of Surenen

The Surenen mountain Pass (or Surenenpass) hiking destination has been described many times. One can therefore refer to the various articles that already exist. However, I never tire of crossing this pass regularly and therefore of describing my adventure.

Crossing the pass from Engelberg to Altdorf is a big chunk for anyone who wants to do it for one day. It takes, in fact, more than 7 hours of walking, for almost 35 km and a drop of 1500 m. It is therefore preferable to cut the hike in two. One can certainly sleep in Engelberg and take the first bus and the first cable car to Fürenalp. One can also choose to sleep on a mountain pasture. The possibility that then arises is to sleep at the Hohbiel chalet. This chalet has a few bedrooms and a large dormitory. It’s very rustic, but it’s worth the trip. The advantage is that by doing so, the journey between Fürenalp and the pass is about an hour shorter.

From Hohbiel, one follows an almost flat bit of trail leading to the Stäuber Falls (also called Stierenbach). After the bridge over the torrent and a short climb, one crosses to reach the Blacken mountain pasture. It is from the Blackenalp that the serious things really begin. A good trail climbs through the slope below the Blackenstock to reach a somewhat flatter spot just below the shelter and below the pass.

On the other side of the pass, a winding path allows one to quickly lose altitude. Even though the mountain bikes have considerably damaged the route, it is still quite easy to find the ideal line. A little further down, in a bend to the right under a rock, starts a trace of a path crossing the entire scree slope under the Brunnistock. I favor this variant, even though there may be problematic snowfields at the beginning of the season and that it is out of question of stopping too much during the crossing, because of rock falls. The advantage is that one must not go up to the small pass near the Angistock.

Further, the path evolves along a ridge from which the viewpoints on Lake Uri are more and more frequent. Along the ridge, one will not fail to pass near the Geissrüggen, a place where excavations have brought to light remains dating from the period of the Hallstatt civilization (late bronze).

Further down, near the Chräienhöreli, a steep climb reminds one that one has not quite reached the arrival station of the Brüsti cable car.

Itinerary: Hohbiel – Stäuber – Blackenalp – Surenenpass – Lang Schnee – Geissrüggen – Chräienhöreli – Brüsti
Distance: 11.5km
Altitude gain: 770m
Duration: 4h30

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