Four Lakes – One Pass Hike – Central Switzerland


Starting at Melchsee – Frutt (1920m), though this hike can be walked in the other direction as well,  we peacefully made our way under blue skies to Tannensee (1974m). Then up to Engstlensee (1834), stopped over at Engstlenalp for a homemade slice of nut cake, pushed on to Jochpass (2207), crossed patches of snow and then down to Trübsee.

The hike is over 18km, with roughly 600 meters of height gain, and the hike took just over 4.5 hours to complete.  There is only one slightly technical part of the trail, though cables are provided for safety.

Why this hike is worth the effort.

There are incredible views throughout the entire duration of this hike.  Hikers won’t be disappointed with the beauty that surrounds them!


During the summer months, hikers can enjoy gorgeous alpine flowers.


The four stunning lakes (Melchsee-Frutt, Tannensee, Engstlenalp, Trübsee) with Tannensee being the only man-made lake of the four, are gorgeous milestones along the route.


Accommodations, food and toilets can be found at Melchsee – Frutt, Tannalp, Engstlenalp, Joch Berghaus and Trübsee, which make for light packing.


Grilling is possible at all four lakes, with huts that offer ample wood supplies.


The Fruttli – Zug for kids, which is a sweet yellow and blue train, that will cart kiddos from Melchsee – Frutt to Tannalp and back.  This ultimately means less whining for the parents to endure!


You get to get the feeling of accomplishing something crossing a pass.   A chair – lift is also available for this portion of the hike for those not interested in snow or passes.


Getting to Melchsee – Frutt from Basel:

Basel SBB – Luzern – Sarnen – Stöckalp – Melchsee – Frutt – 2:30 minutes

Getting Home from Engelberg:

Engelberg – Luzern – Basel Sbb – 1:54 minutes

Hotel Recommendation:  Hotel Engstlenalp – mountain house in a lovely location with well appointed meals, old -style rooms and bathrooms down the hall.

Happy hiking!


8 thoughts on “Four Lakes – One Pass Hike

  1. I’ve done this hike last year in September and it is definitely one of the most scenic hikes I’ve done up to date.

    1. Hello Jowena, In April and May, there is still quite a bit of snow at 2000m, the Jochpass is about 2200m, and even in July, we hit a few patches of snow coming down over the pass to Trübsee. I would not recommend it as slide areas are prevalent.

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