Glacier-covered landscape, rugged peaks, rustic and modern mountain huts and magnificent views – hiking along the Adlersweg (eagles way) in East Tyrol is an incomparable experience. One of the most famous long-distance hiking trails in Tyrol, the route gets its name from its shape; the silhouette of an eagle.
Hiking along the wings of an eagle, you will pass exciting embrasures, cool glacial lakes, picturesque alpine valleys and thundering waterfalls with majestic Großvenediger and Großglockner peaks always in view.
The Adlersweg in East Tyrol is part of the 256-mile (413 km) long long-distance hiking trail system in Tyrol which consists of two routes: the longer trail through North Tyrol and the adventure in the east of this magnificent Alpine region which has been put together for you here.
With about 60 miles (100 km) over nine daily stages through East Tyrol, this route is considerably shorter than the 200 mile (320 km) "big" eagle trail but it is no less spectacular. You will hike to the glacier-rich Venedigergruppe and to the impressive Großglockner where you can enjoy the famous alpenglow at its base. On some stages this route requires increased attention, a head for heights and a firm step.
Your days always begin and end at one of the beautifully situated mountain huts. These cozy huts are very popular with hikers during the summer months, so we recommend that you book well in advance. The ideal season for the Adlersweg is from mid-June to the end of September. At higher altitudes, there is plenty of snow outside of the summer months. The start and finish points of the East Tyrolean Adlersweg are in a picturesque alpine village.
To get to the starting point in the east of Tyrol, take the train to Lienz. From there a free bus will take you to Ströden. You can also easily get back to Lienz from the end point in Kals am Großglockner.
If you are a stamp hunter and have fun collecting stamps, then the Adlersweg is just right for you. In many huts, alpine pastures and inns you will be able to get your stamp book out. As a reward and small souvenir, you can pick up the eagle pin in bronze, silver or gold and an Adlersweg certificate, depending on the number of stamp places you have hiked.
If you are looking for another challenge, we recommend the 24 stages of the wonderfully challenging "big brother" of the Adlersweg in North Tyrol: komoot.de/collection/897054/auf-adlers-schwingen-der-nordtiroler-adlerweg-in-24-etappen
You can find more information at tirol.at/reisefuehrer/sport/wandern/adlerweg
Your adventure on the Adlerweg in Osttirol starts at the car park Ströden. From here begins the ascent to the picturesque Maurertal with its rushing mountain streams, green pastures and views of the glaciated landscape. At the Essener-Rostocker Hütte you can reward yourself for the strenuous ascent, before going up to the Turmjöchl in serpentines. Here you can catch a breath or test your architecture on one of the many stone towers. The Johannishütte welcomes you at an altitude of 2,121 meters with delicious home-made cake and a quaint dormitory or shared room for the night.You can reach your starting point in Ströden within an hour from the train station Lienz with the free bus line 591. To use the bus service in East Tyrol for free, you need a guest card, which you will receive from one of your booked accommodations.
The second stage will be exciting and challenging at the same time, because the Adlerweg takes you into the high alpine terrain. After leaving your cozy accommodation in the Johannishütte, you ascend over several bends to the Schernesschaft at 3,040 meters. You will enjoy a unique view of the glacier-rich Großvenediger. The suspended transition requires a head for heights and sure-footedness. Before you arrive at the intermediate destination at the Sajathütte, the so-called "castle in the mountains", you can make a detour to the Kreuzspitze with its imposing summit cross and magnificent panorama.If you have strengthened yourself on the Sajathütte, continue to the Timmeltalhöhenweg. Because of its strong exposure and danger of falling rocks you should walk through this section quickly, but carefully. In the Eisseehütte, you can review this spectacular day with a hearty dinner.
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Today, a short and relaxing day's walk awaits you, so you can think about whether to make a detour to the ice lake before you return to Eagle Walk. A walk of about an hour will take you from the Eisseehütte to the ice-cold, but beautifully turquoise shining glacier lake. The Adlerweg now follows the promising Venediger Höhenweg high above the Virgen. 15 very sharp switchbacks in a trough bring you up to the donkey back. From here you can already see your destination, the beautifully situated, with shingles disguised Bonn Matreier hut.
Steep climbs, demanding descents, steel fences and old snow fields characterize your way on the fourth stage. It is again a challenge to your surefootedness, but offers impressive views of the ubiquitous Großvenediger and the Großglockner massif. In fine weather you can even see as far as the Dolomites. You pass again a few rock-rich niches, which are mostly insured steel. The Galtenkogel towers over the Galtenscharte at an altitude of almost 3,000 meters. Below you can enjoy the view of the idyllic Froßnitztal before you start the climb over some moraines, which leads you to the Badener hut on the Großvenediger.
Always keeping an eye on the glacier world of the Grossvenediger, today you can climb several hundred vertical meters down to the valley to Innergschlöss. Cables give you on the steep descent always safety. On your way, you pass the "Eye of God", a mountain lake where a small peninsula of grass forms the shape of an eye, reflecting the deep blue sky. Once you have arrived in the valley, you can stop for a rest at the Venedigerhaus. Then it goes along the Gschlösslbach, past a meltwater driven waterfall and the valley opens in front of you.The rock chapel, built in stone, once again testifies to fascinating architecture. You are now very close to the goal of the day, the Matreier Tauernhaus, which is accessible via shallow paths.
To get from your last destination on the Tauernhaus to your next stage, you can take the hiking bus 955 to Matrei Hinterburg, which belongs to the municipality of Matrei in Osttirol. Over the traffic-poor driveway you reach the parking lot Glanz, your starting point today. Through dense larch forest you climb over the Edelweiss meadow to the outer Steiner Alm, which tempts with delicious, traditional food. Giant greenschist blocks make the landscape wildly romantic.The rushing Steinerbach accompanies you on the approach to the Sudetendeutsche Hütte, which is beautifully embedded in the Granatspitzgruppe.
You get closer to the imposing Großglocker with the seventh stage. Ice-age moraines characterize the landscape, while you walk below the Gradötz Glacier up to the same-named gap in a rocky area. You will soon cross the Muntanitzbach. Heavy snowmelt makes it difficult to cross it with dry feet. Now it goes over numerous narrow serpentines through alders, larches and ash trees back down into the valley. At Stotzbach, your feet can stay dry, because a pretty wooden bridge leads over the roaring mountain stream, which plunges down a little further than a beautiful waterfall.At the end of the village valley you reach the cozy Kalser Tauernhaus, your destination for today.
Your valley hike through the picturesque village valley continues. You pass the inviting Bergeralm, which serves the best Kaiserschmarrn. A stop in the Moa Alm is almost mandatory, because on the rustic Alm is cooked even today on a 80 year old wood stove. The original since 1771 abandoned pasture is the oldest hut in the valley. You can now decide whether you climb on a larch-lined alpine path back into the alpine world or rather directly on a trail that crosses the Almweg several times, abbreviates. Once in the high trough of the Teischnitz plain, you will see the ice towers of the Teischnitzkee glistening in the sun.The extravagant Stüdlhütte, located at the foot of the Großglockner, can be reached via a few meadow slopes, which soon change into rock and rubble. The view over the glacier world from here is simply breathtaking.
The Osttiroler Adlerweg is coming to an end. The last stage is again waiting with an exposed point, scree and debris. With the departure of the Stüdlhütte you can now also the Großglockner behind you. However, a look back at the gigantic glacier massif is always worthwhile. The climax of the stage is reached at the Pfortscharte, from which you descend as steeply as you ascended. At the stately Glorer Hütte you can stop for a last time high up in the mountain world, then an earthy trail leads you down to the end of the Eagle Walk at the Lucknerhaus. Here you can immortalize yourself with your own Adlerweg story in the Adlerweg tour book.From the Lucknerhaus you can take the free bus 952 to Lienz train station. Trains to Innsbruck, Bregenz, Vienna, Munich and Zurich leave from there.