On the Goetheweg trail you’ll find a spectacular panoramic hike high above Innsbruck on the Nordkette mountain range from Pfeishütte Lodge to Haferlekar mountain station.
Using the Seegruben and Hafelekarbahn cable cars you’ll head up to Hafelekar mountain station at 2,256m above sea level. From there, you’ll follow the Goetheweg trail on the southern slopes of the Nordkette mountain range to Mühlkarscharte with its magnificent views over Innsbruck. At Mühlkarscharte, you’ll switch to the northern side of the Nordkette, where the Karwendel mountains will tower over you, before hiking across Mandlscharte to the cosy and welcoming Pfeishütte Lodge. From the Hafelekar mountain station you can take Innsbruck’s Nordkettenbahn cable cars down into the city and, later in the afternoon, enjoy exploring this beautiful Alpine destination.
Today you may be walking past a few different areas where cows graze. Although generally very docile and used to walkers, keep your distance and never turn your back on a cow that is behaving strangely or aggressive. Be particularly vigilant around cows with calves.
Always allow plenty of time for your hike. The walking times indicated do not include breaks. Breaks for photos and a rest need to be added to the specified times.
Make sure you find out about current weather conditions and keep an eye on weather changes. Thunderstorms can gather very quickly in the Alps.
Do not leave the marked hiking trails and be extra cautious in poor visibility. The trail is partially exposed. Given this is a mountainous trail, you should be steady on your feet and not afraid of the high altitudes.
Tips, hints and links
Food and Drink
Food and drink: refreshment is available at Pfeishütte Lodge and Hafelekarhaus.
Haferlekar mountain station on Innsbruck’s Nordkettenbahn cable car network
0.00km - With the entrance to Pfeishütte Lodge behind you, walk onto trail number 219 (Goetheweg) opposite you and follow this slightly uphill. The path, which later starts to ascend, will lead you to a mountain hut.
1.1km – At a fork in the path, head towards ‘Mandlscharte’ and ‘Hafelekar Bergstation’, and TURN RIGHT at the next fork (left would take you to Arzler Scharte), then follow the Schuttkar up to Mandlscharte in a wide loop.
2.7km – You’ve arrived at Mandlscharte. Take care here, the short descent to the other side is very steep and stony. Continue following the safe and wide trail, which will cross under the rocks at the same level (with great views of the Nordkette mountain range behind you).
4.1km – After a short climb, you’ll switch to the Inntal Valley side and descend in a zig-zag fashion for a few metres. The trail then turns into an easy climb to the upper part of the sloping, partially grassy southern side of Nordkette, taking you slightly uphill to the west to Hafelekar mountain station. Stick to the signs for ‘Hafelekar Bergstation’ and ‘Goetheweg’. The last section alternates to the left and right of the ridge.
6.2km – You have reached Hafelekar mountain station.
all notes on protected areas
32T 683264 5244671
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike
Always wear good walking boots with a robust sole, and take waterproofs with you. Take plenty of water with you (min. 1 litre) and don’t forget sunscreen!
Hiking poles can be helpful.
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