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Hike along the Ruinaulta: The Grand Canyon of Switzerland

Ilanz - Valendas - Versam / Trin - Reichnau-Tamins

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Hike along the Ruinaulta: The Grand Canyon of Switzerland

Ilanz - Valendas - Versam / Trin - Reichnau-Tamins

Published on 26.04.2016 by GabrielleMerk | Tour Date: 26.04.2015 | Favourite Entries (7)

The largest landslide of the Alps took place 10,000 years ago about 60 km from the source of the Rhine River. This is known as the Flims landslide and was apparently one of the largest landslide events in world history. The valley that existed at the time was filled with 8000 million cubic meters of rock.

In these past 10,000 years the Rhine has been carving out this massive volume of rock to create a canyon which is known as the Grand Canyon of Switzerland (stretches from Valendas to Reichenau, approx. 14 km). The canyon can only be discovered on foot or bike, by train, or river rafting. The trail mostly follows the railway tracks except for one 4 km piece where you'd have to hike up out of the canyon. A clever alternative is to catch the train in Versam and descend again in Trin, from where you can continue along a fairly recently-created trail along the river to the town of Reichenau-Tamins.

As you hike through this amazing landmark (which is known as the Ruinaulta in the local Romansch language) it is impossible to imagine that so much rock could have been worn down in only 10,000 years. The river is wild here and follows its own course, slithering along so much like a snake might. The ride with the Rhaetian Railway on the 4 km stretch where there are no trails is also recommended!

 

 

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Published on 26.04.2016 by GabrielleMerk | Tour Date: 26.04.2015 | Favourite Entries (7)

Route Details 

Region
Graubünden
Time Required
4 hours
Distance
17 km
Ascent
400 m
Descent
400 m
Max. Altitude
852 m
Min. Altitude
590 m
Season Start / Season End
April - November
Level of Difficulty (Hiking)
Panorama
Experience
Points of Interest
White cliffs of the Rhine Gorge between Valendas and Versam
Starting Point
Ilanz Train Station
Starting Point with Public Transport
Destination
Reichenau Train Station
Return with Public Transport
Places to Eat
Ilanz, Reichenau-Tamins
Things to Note
The little train stations of Valendas-Sagogn, Versam and Trin stand alone at the bottom of the canyon. Their respective towns are at higher elevations above the canyon.

Details about this tour 

  • Link to map with elevation profile
  • Download GPS-File
  • Google Map with Route-Track
  • Route Description
  • Printing the tour

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Jeder Schweizer soll einmal durch die Ruinaulta gewandert sein. Man kann sich kaum...

Rating: 6/6

Hiked on 26.04.2015 by GabrielleMerk

Jeder Schweizer soll einmal durch die Ruinaulta gewandert sein. Man kann sich kaum vorstellen dass vor 10,000 Jahren die Berge hier so mächtig waren, dass sie beim Sturz das ganze Tal füllen konnten, das der Rhein inzwischen ausgeschnitzt hat.

 

 

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