Nestled between the mighty rock faces of the Loferer and Leogang mountains in Austria, lies the picturesque Pillersee Valley. Surrounded by the Kitzbuhel Alps, the emerald-green Pillersee Lake is a wonderful place to take a rest after a long day hiking. The long-distance hiking trail WaiWi – from Waidring to Wildseeloder – takes you to the most stunning corners in the Pillersee Valley where you can forget everyday life.
This Collection guides you along the WaiWi from Waidring municipality on the valley floor up to Wildseeloder Mountain in three stages. As it is relatively short, this route makes for a great long weekend in the mountains and gives a taste of long-distance hiking without needing extensive trekking equipment. You should, however, have a good fitness level and surefootedness for this trail. On the first and most demanding stage, you hike 13 miles (22 km) and climb 3,600 feet (1,100 m). I’ve included details of an alternative, easier route too.
The WaiWi takes you through varied landscapes. You’ll hike to impressive vantage points, through mountain pastures and to glistening lakes. Along the way, there are extraordinary highlights such as the Jacob's Cross on the Buchensteinwand, the world's largest summit cross, and Wildseeloder Lake. You will spend the first night in St. Jakob in Haus, which has a good range of accommodation. The second stage takes you up into the wonderful mountains around Wildseeloder Lake where you will find the rustic Wildseeloder Hut, your second night’s accommodation, on the lakeshore. Before you hike back to the valley on the third day, you climb the 6,948-feet (2,118-m) summit of the Wildseeloder. The final stretch takes you to the Wildalm and Lauchsee Lake before arriving at your destination, the town of Fieberbrunn.
The three stages of the WaWi are easy to walk and you don't need any special hiking knowledge. We do, however, recommend wearing sturdy shoes and bringing sufficient stamina with you, especially for the first stage. Although, you can opt for an easier version here instead: komoot.de/tour/163142105. Look out for the checkpoints along the way to collect stamps for the hiking badge. After completing the trail, you can pick up your badge from the information centre in Fieberbrunn or at the Alte Post Hotel.
With more than 22 kilometers and approximately 1,100 meters of altitude, this first stage is the most demanding stage of the WAIWI long-distance trail - from Waidring to Wildseeloder. If you prefer to take it a little easier at the beginning, you can also choose the alternative variant (komoot.de/tour/163142105).The starting point is at the parking lot near the municipal office in Waidring. First, the path zigzags you through a beautiful mixed forest to the local mountain. Once at the summit cross, your gaze wanders over the Fellhorn to the stone slab and you can take a break on the bench. From the local mountain, it descends into the wild and romantic Weissbach valley, where the Alpengasthof Oberweissbach invites you to take a break.You will then pass the lavishly painted raking chapel, which is also a stamp for the hiking needle. You hike steadily uphill over wide alpine pastures and mountain pine fields, the trees provide pleasant shade in summer. High above the Pillersee you reach the summit of the Schafelberg and enjoy a wonderful panorama. Not far away is the summit of the Kirchberg, which marks the highest point of this stage at 1,678 meters.Via the unmanaged Gerstbergalm you hike down to the cozy Winterstelleralm, where you can fortify yourself with a delicious snack. Following the Lindbach, the path takes you down to Schartental and Schwendt. Old, traditional farmhouses line the path and testify to living tradition. In St. Jakob in Haus you have reached your first milestone.
The second stage starts in St. Jakob in Haus and brings you to the Buchensteinwand at the beginning of the day. You walk steadily uphill on quiet forest paths and reach the impressive 30 meter high Jakobskreuz. The viewpoints of the walkable cross extend in four directions and allow an unrestricted panorama. There are always exhibitions in the rooms and in the neighboring Alpengasthof Buchensteinwand you can fortify yourself for the rest of the route.Then it goes over alpine meadows down into the valley to Fieberbrunn. After you have crossed the roaring Fieberbrunner Ache, the hiking trail begins to climb again. Through quiet forests you march up to the rustic Lärchfilzhochalm, which awaits you with delicious food and a fantastic view. The landscape is characterized by large alpine pastures and small huts.At the Wildalm, the last climb begins via a climb up to the picturesque Wildseelodersee. The higher you hike, the further the view of the peaks of the Wilder Kaiser, the Leoganger and Loferer Steinberge and of course the Wildseeloder. On the shores of the shimmering lake is the shingle-covered Wildseeloderhaus, where you will spend the night. You can end the day relaxed with culinary delights on the sun terrace.
Get recommendations on the best single tracks, peaks, & plenty of other exciting outdoor places.
The last stage of the WAIWI begins with a fantastic view high up on the clear Wildseeloder lake. After a delicious hut breakfast, the steep flank next to the refuge goes up to the summit of the Wildseeloder. During the ascent, completely new views of the shimmering lake and the surrounding mountains open up. At the Loderkreuz at over 2,000 meters you have reached the highest point of the long-distance hiking trail and are looking at the impressive Kitzbühel Alps.
Afterwards you hike over a ridge back to the shore of the Wildseelodersee and descend to the Wildalm. The path continues downhill over lush green alpine pastures and you reach the middle station of the Lärchfilzkogelbahn. Here is a spacious adventure playground for young and old right behind the traditional Gasthof Streuböden.
After almost ten kilometers, you will pass Lauchsee, where you can take a break or even swim. The last section of the long-distance hiking trail follows the Lauchseeweg into the center of Fieberbrunn. The third stage ends at the square in front of the community center and you look back once more at the summit of the Wildseeloder and the beautiful PillerseeTal.