Lauterbrunnen

A morning’s visit to Lauterbrunnen valley, including a walk to Staubbach Falls and Trümmelbach falls.

After a beautiful view of the Lauterbrunnen valley at sunrise on Friday morning, and a hearty breakfast at the Hotel Edelweiss in Wengen, we boarded the cog train down from Wengen to Lauterbrunnen. It was a short walk to the edge of town and the famous Staubbach Falls. Impressive from above, these falls are truly inspirational in person. Read on, check out the gallery, and you won’t miss Trümmelbach Falls.

Lauterbrunnen from the trail to Staubbach falls.

Staubbach Falls are famous for their misty beauty – and because Goethe penned his poem Gesang der Geister über den Wassern after visiting the falls in 1779 [Wikipedia]. They are especially impressive because the water falls down an overhanging cliff, so the water separates into an ever-changing mist according to the whims of the day’s breeze.

Staubbach falls, in Lauterbrunnen.

Andy and I climbed the trail to a path cut into the cliffside, and soon found ourselves behind the mist looking out over the valley. Beautiful, but it was not until I returned to the base that I actually noticed the tiny people standing in this very spot. Look closely!

People walk to the base of Staubbach falls, in Lauterbrunnen.

Pam and Andy returned to Lauterbrunnen to catch a bus up to the next falls, while I walked the farm road up the valley. It was a clear sunny morning, and the green pastures and wildflowers either side of the road provided a perfect compliment to the incredibly blue and white of the sky, clouds, and peaks ahead. Soon I was crossing the raging Trümmelbach brook, silty with glacial runoff, and followed it up to Trümmelbach Falls where Andy and Pam awaited at the entrance gate.

View of Breithorn peak from Lauterbrunnen valley.

We paid our fee and followed the stairs (and funicular elevator!) into the interior of the falls… because these falls are really a sequence of ten mighty cascades descending through chasms cut into the cliffside. According to Wikipedia, “the creek called Trümmelbach alone drains the glacier defiles of EigerMönch, and Jungfrau and carries more than 20,000 tons of boulder detritus per year.” I marveled at the engineers who cut trails, steps, and lighting to allow visitors like us to walk safely up beside the raging torrent.

Pam at Trümmelbach falls – Lautenbrunnen valley.

Don’t miss the gallery, with videos of both falls, and more photos.

Author: dfkotz

David Kotz is an outdoor enthusiast, traveller, husband, and father of three. He is also a Professor of Computer Science at Dartmouth College.

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