Variety-packed hike in complete peace and quiet, past …several historic mountain pasture huts and an upland moor near the Hintenkarscharte, along with a waterfall close to the end of the stage. There are distinctive patches of alpine roses on the Scheibenschlag upland moor. The stage also offers a dreamy view of the surrounding mountains, the icy giants of the Hohe Tauern and the imposing peak of the Großer Rettenstein, which seem to be within reach. For the most part the paths are not too difficult, with only the sections on either side of the Hintenkarscharte classified as moderately difficult. On account of its length – around 19 kilometres – a decent level of fitness is required.
Start out from Gasthof Steinberg and hike into the valley. After about one kilometre, turn left at the second bridge (at the end of the paved road) and head towards Scheibenschlag Alm/Hintenkarscharte. The route runs uphill through various hairpin bends, through a mix of forest and pastures to Scheibenschlag Niederalm (1,446 m, 1 hour 45 min from Gasthaus Steinberg). The route then branches off to the right, onto a steep cart path (Scheibenschlag Hochalm, Gerstinger Joch). The Scheibenschlag high mountain pasture is located at the end of the bumpy path.
It is quite difficult to find the way on to the next path, since the terrain has been heavily trodden by cattle. It begins right behind the pasture and leads through the alpine roses, always a few metres above the ditch. Pay particular attention to the ground markings! Some 300 metres after the pasture, the route branches off up to the left and you reach a flat ridge with clearly visible signposts. From here, it is just a few hundred metres to the distinctive outline of the Hintenkarscharte (1,829 m, 3 hours 30 mins from Steinberghaus). On the other side, you walk gently downhill along a path, passing a small moor to reach Hintenkar Hochalm (1,722 m). From here, continue on the access road to Hintenkar Niederalm (1,546 m). At the fork in the path underneath the pasture, do not continue down to the valley, but proceed on a short section to the stream in the direction of Haglangeralm.
Once you cross the stream, move onto a small steep path that runs parallel to the meadow path, away from the valley. There is now a short counter climb on this path, through a beautiful mixed forest, until you reach the Haglangeralm, which does not provide food or drink. A short section on the forest path then takes you down to where a meadow path branches off on the left towards Labalm. Several hairpin bends take you to Labalm, which can be seen from quite a distance (1,263 m, 1 hour 30 mins from Hintenkarscharte). After stopping off, it is just a short trip down to the valley and along the stream to Aschau (1,013 metres, approx. 1 hour from Labalm).
KAT Walk Alpine Stage 3
- Mitte Mai bis Mitte Oktober