St. Niklaus Train Station
The trail up to Augstbordpass, the last pass of the tour, begins its climb right along the south patio and garden area of Hotel Schwarzhorn. As with many other passes during the tour, the climbing is steep and strenuous. There are a few trail intersections along the way. The rule here is to always continue up. Eventually the terrain becomes quite rocky, as your route hugs, and sometimes crosses, the Grüobach (stream). The terrain will begin to relax, almost allowing you to catch your breath, before the final steep push to the pass.
Enjoy the views at the pass. Although today is an exception, as the best views come after the pass when you get your first glimpse into the Mattertal. Descend from the pass, first quite steeply, and then more gradually. At the first junction, turn right, following the signs to Jungen (where a potential gondola ride awaits). Descend to cross a stream and then follow the trail into a climbing traverse as it leads you to a spectacular viewpoint, awaiting as you round the corner into the Mattertal.
As you make your way into the Mattertal, there are some exposed areas, so try not to let the views distract too much. Take the first left turn, descending steeply toward Jungen, following the signs through the next series of junctions. The charming little hamlet of Jungen will eventually come into view. We recommend extending your stay in this charming location, by stopping for food and/or drinks at the Junger-Stübli (look for the left turn to the gondola on your way through town if you plan to skip the remaining descent).
Eventually, it will be time to hit the trail again. If you are descending by foot, continue downhill from the restaurant, as the trail to St. Niklaus steeply zig-zags down the hillside. Eventually, the trail crosses under the gondola four times. About mid-way between the 3rd and 4th gondola crossings, the grade of the trail eases into a traversing descent, giving your knees a short break, prior to the final descent into St. Niklaus. The trail comes out almost directly across from the St. Niklaus Train Station, the official end of this stage.
We recommend stopping in at the Tourist Information Office in St. Niklaus and requesting information on the Europaweg, the route for the next two days. This route travels through exposed, tricky and unstable terrain, and is occassionally closed. Currently there is a detour in place between St. Niklaus and the Europa Hut that is to remain in place indefinitely. It is important to have an update regarding the trail before continuing on.