Trutg dil Flem – Flims Waterway Trail

This fantastic hike has three special attractions: a gorgeous high alpine river valley, a huge waterfall, and a river gorge with seven interesting bridges crossing it. It’s long, tough hike at over 14 km with over 1000m of elevation descent, but it’s worth the effort. This hike is suitable for families with experience hiking and kids that have some endurance. The views are spectacular and very unique. 

Location: Graubünden Switzerland
Address: Flims Dorf Cable Car, Via Stenna 1 Flims
Car: 1hr30 drive from Zürich
Parking GPS: 46°50’02.2″N 9°16’55.9″E
Train: 1hr50 from Zurich to Flims Dorf, Bergbahnen
Adult half fare round trip about CHF 55.20
Trail: 14.25km one way
Condition: narrow dirt alpine trail, 1000m elevation descent
Skill: challenging
Open: July through October, chair lifts run 9:00-17:00
Price: Adult CHF 23, Youth CHF 15.50, Child CHF 7.70, under 6 free
Services: restaurant at 4km, fire pit at 12 km
More info: www.flims.com

Overview

This hike starts at the top of the Naraus-Casson chair lift, with a short steep climb up the mountain. Then it traverses the mountain to the otherworldly Segnesboden high river plain. Then a short detour through the valley to a big waterfall. Then retrace your steps and head down the mountain, following the river all the way back to the Flims town center, crossing seven bridges with artful designs.

The hike is 14.25 km, with about 1000m elevation descent over the last 9 km. It’s hard work but worth it. We had 4 kids in our crew ranging from 8 to 13 years old. They all hiked much faster than the adults.

There is a mountain hut with a restaurant near the Segnesboden. There wasn’t a good place to build a fire until about the 10km point. There is an official Feuerstelle at the 12 km, with picnic tables, water fountain and WC.

Getting There

The chair lift to the trail head leave from the center of Flims Dorf.

By car: Drive to Flims and follow signs to the cable car in the center of town. There is a large parking garage adjacent to the cable car station.

By public transport: Take a train to Chur, then a bus to Flims Dorf, Bergbahnen. Make sure to take the express bus, not the regional bus, which has the same number and leaves at the same time but takes about 20 mins longer. The cable car is a short walk from the bus stop.

Opening Times & Tickets

Buy a one-way ticket up the Foppa-Naraus-Cassons chair lifts. In 2017, this ticket costs Adult CHF 23, Youth CHF 15.50, Child CHF 7.70, under 6 free. SBB Half-fare and Junior cards are not accepted. The chair lifts run from July to October, running 9:00-17:00 daily.

Trail Impressions

Take the chair lift on the right, with signs to Trutg dil Flem. At Naraus, you’ll switch to another chair lift continuing up to Cassons.

View from the chair lift.

The second chair lift drops off at Cassons, at this restaurant. There is a swing set with view here.

Follow signs up the mountain to Segneshütte, not to Trutg dil Flem. You are first going up to the beautiful alpine river plain, called Segnesboden, then you will walk down the mountain along the Trutg dil Flem waterway trail. It was tough for our kids to start on these steep switchbacks, but it only lasted about 20 mins, about 1 km. Then it flattens out.

Here’s where the trail flattens out, wrapping around the mountain.

Lots of wildflowers in mid July.

There is a very wide flat river plain flowing from the waterfall.

The waterfall is so much bigger and powerful than you might imagine. It’s amazing!!!

When you are done admiring the waterfall, retrace your steps to where the trail split.

Do not try walking on the river plain. It’s so tempting but you will get so wet. It looks very shallow but the water is spread wide, so it’s very difficult to cross without getting your shoes wet. Two of our kids got soaked to their knees, another took off his shoes to cross a deep section barefoot in the icy water. I retraced my steps and took the bridge and trail back, nice and dry.

Now walk along the river toward the hut in the distance.

We passed a honey farm, selling jars of delicious honey from these local bees. Bring cash.

Looking back to the Segnesboden.

Before your reach the hut, follow the trail to your left and head down along the river.

Very steep and rocky in this section. Nice to have walking sticks here.

 

The first of many bridges crossing the river.

Some cows grazing.

The trail is usually along the river but higher up.

Through the tall grass.

We found lots of wild blueberries here and spent some time picking.

The trail will connect with a dirt road. Follow the road to your right and cross this bridge.

The river is very pretty running under this bridge.

Continue to follow signs for trail 764 Trutg dil Flem – Flimser Wasserweg, on the right side of the river.

Right after this big bridge the trail splits, the left side for people and the right side for bikes.

Now the trail descends some steps into the gorge. The sign Bei Hochwasser points to an alternate route that should be used if the water level is very high. That alternate route does not cross the river with the bridges.

The normal trail crosses over several interesting stylish bridges.

The first picnic spot next to the river, at about the 10-11 km mark. We built a small fire but there wasn’t much wood. Plus it took us so long to get here, we were eating at about 16:00. There is an official picnic area with wood in another 1 km or so but not next to the river.

View away from the river.

Heading back into the forest.

The trail joins the paved road briefly.

Here the official “Feuerstelle” with a fire pit, water, tables, wood, and a WC.

Now the trail splits. The official trail continues along the river, meandering back to the cable car.

We were in a hurry because it was late and one of our crew was sick. So instead we followed signs to Flims and walked through the village to the bus stop. But I don’t think it was much faster.

OK, that’s it. It was a hard hike but so beautiful and definitely worth the effort. I hope you like it.

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This fantastic hike has three special attractions: a gorgeous high alpine river valley, a huge waterfall, and a river gorge with seven interesting bridges crossing it. It's long, tough hike, but it's worth the effort, suitable for families with experience hiking and some endurance.

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