Beside rushing waters

15 October 2019 - A walk along the Aa gorge from Engelberg to Grafenort offers a magical experience of unspoiled nature: cliffs, rocks, woodland, flora and fauna – and the constant sound of rushing water.

Bridges across the water
In the untamed surroundings of the Aa gorge I feel far from civilisation. Here, mighty chunks of rock that have been gradually eroded over the millennia attest to the power of nature. There are also several man-made bridges, of course, but they simply add to the beauty of the trail. This is a particularly delightful walk on warm days as most of the route is under the shade of many trees.

Force majeure
Every time I hike along the Aa gorge I remember the terrible floods of 2005, when Engelberg was cut off from the outside world. The access road to the village was impassable, and parts of the Aa gorge hiking trail were destroyed. I shudder to think of the force with which vast quantities of water and rubble must have surged down the gorge that fateful summer. Since then, the route has been restored thanks to volunteers who dedicated many hours of hard labour. And their efforts really paid off – now the trail is even lovelier than it was before!

Perfect spots for a picnic
Along the route are an assortment of inviting picnic sites. I have two personal favourites. “Toni’s Balm” is a covered seating area set up by a kind and dedicated private individual. Everything you need is here. There are pans and utensils. You can take a beer if you put a coin in the money tin. And there’s even ketchup! For the children there is a swing and a seesaw. 
The picnic site at the Arnibrügg is my other favourite. It has a large table, a woodpile, and a swing seat. A little stream also crosses the path here – reason enough for my kids to want to stop here for hours. But that’s okay, because I also like to while away the time at this beautiful spot, listening to the rushing waters of Engelberg’s Aa river. 

Text: Andrea Hurschler
Andrea Hurschler has walked along the Aa gorge countless times. She has always loved this wild, romantic path, but with her small children she experiences it from a new perspective. She counts the bridges (ten), picks wild strawberries (oodles), and watches the butterflies (roughly a gazillion).
Images: Engelberg- Titlis Tourismus AG