Discover the most incredible leg of the Via Valais with its varied terrain, amazing views and peak at 3,610 metres, making it the highest trail in the Alps.
Distance 19.3 km
Highest point3,342 m
Lowest point1,403 m
Leg 7 is undoubtedly the most adventurous on the Via Valais. The Turtmann hut is the start of a long ascent to the Schöllijoch, a pass that opens onto the Matter valley (Mattertal). The alpine path leading to the pass is rocky and partially equipped with cables. Follow the Brunegg glacier and below the Barrhorn before reaching the Schöllijoch, which is the most difficult passage of the entire Via Valais in technical terms. Descend with cables and metal steps and head down to the glacier below to join a rocky path. This requires the utmost caution throughout the 2,000 m long descent. Before reaching Randa, the route skirts the hillside and offers a panoramic view of the Matter valley. Finally, below the Weisshorn, the trail ends with a very steep descent to Randa.
While not directly on the Via Valais, the Topali Hut is a detour that’s worth the extra effort. Have a slice of cake and enjoy the view from the patio.
Update: May 11, 2021
Schöllijoch, 3,342 m
Randa, 1,403 m
Best time of year
Use of the trails and the information on this website is at your own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.
For all trails:
Use marked trails only, and take note of all signposting – for both your own safety as well as that of grazing animals and to avoid disturbing wildlife.
Close gates after passing through.
Please treat other trail users, as well as the plants and animals, with respect.
For mountain trails:
Take extra care protecting yourself from the sun at high altitudes. UV radiation can be exceptionally strong, even in cloudy weather.
Plan your trail carefully: take the fitness level of each participant, weather forecast and season into consideration.
Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains, without warning. Appropriate clothing is therefore essential, along with adequate supplies of food and water. In case of uncertain weather conditions, turn back in good time.
Inform others of the route you plan to take. Whenever possible, avoid going alone.
Take note of warning signs indicating the constant danger in river beds and along watercourses below dams and reservoirs: water levels may rise rapidly without warning.
The ascent to the Schöllijoch from Turtmann hut is particularly steep and unrelenting. To reach the glacier from the pass requires climbing down a series of ladders and wire ropes. After crossing the glacier, a rocky path takes you down to Randa. Pass through Chella and continue down into the valley, crossing several bridges over the Rosszügji and other fast flowing streams. Where the trail splits to go up to Gross Kastel is where you begin a steep descent to Randa.
Turtmann Hut - Schöllijoch - Schölligletscher - Chella - Guggiberg - Rosszügji - Randa
all notes on protected areas
For the 1st Stage Via Valais : Take the train to Martigny station, then to Le Châble. Take a first gondola lift between Le Châble and Verbier, then a second one from Verbier to Les Ruinettes in order to get to the start of the trail.
For the 1st Stage Via Valais : Take the A9/E62 motorway to Martigny, then continue on the Grand-Saint-Bernard/route 21 via Sembrancher to Le Châble. It is advisable to use public transport however as this is a multi-leg route that ends in Zermatt.
For the 1st Stage Via Valais : 240 free parking spaces are available at the Le Châble Aerial Cableway station for a maximum of 10 days.
32T 399590 5112645
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike
Book recommendation by the author
The tourist office in Turtmann will provide information regarding trail running in the region.
Author’s map recommendations
1:50’000 : 5003 Mont Blanc – Grand Combin
1:50’000 : 5006 Matterhorn – Mischabel
Weather-appropriate clothing: always carry a waterproof jacket