WARNING: If you are an experienced hiker, with the right equipment, stamina and a head for heights, this trail and its risks will be difficult. Portions of this trail are rated T5 for a reason - they are very dangerous, and require a high level of experience and skill. It is certainly not for everyone, and if you have any doubts about your ability to deal with the risks of high vertical exposure on both sides while hiking a narrow path, do not attempt it. This trek is only possible during the late spring, summer and early autumn seasons. Most of the peaks along the trail and many difficult and steep sections remain in shadow through autumn, winter and spring and are snow or ice covered from November until the end of May making them extremely dangerous or impassable.
From Hardergrat (Suggiture and Augstmatthorn) just above Harder Kulm, to Riedergrat (Blasenhubel, Gummhoren and Schnierenhireli - above Niederried and Oberried am Brienzersee) to Brienzergrat (Ällgäulücke and Tannhorn) above Brienz, this beautiful ridge is a federally protected area for wildlife. There is NO CAMPING and NO DRONE FLYING allowed anywhere along the route. From Harder Kulm to Ällgäulücke the ridge and all peaks are a designated nature conservation area and protected area for Steinbock. From Ällgäulücke to Brienzer Rothorn forms the edge of the UNESCO Entlebuch Biosphere where again, no camping or bivouacking is allowed. Drone flying of any kind is prohibited along the entire ridge. Mountain bikes or vehicles of any kind are prohibited from the ridge and trails leading to and from the ridge because those trails are also in the federally protected wildlife area. Dogs must be kept on leads at all times in the protected area.
Friends of the Ridge is a volunteer community group dedicated to helping preserve this beautiful place for the wildlife that live here. Our goal is simple: to increase awareness about the rules that protect this area by providing information online and in print in locations near or leading to the ridge. Why are we doing this? Because there is a problem on the ridge, primarily at the Suggiture and Augstmatthorn end of the trail but it affects the entire ridge. The problem is growing numbers of hikers camping illegally and flying drones illegally and bicycling on trails in the Federally Protected Area for wildlife. In regular patrols during the summer season, local rangers have found dozens of campers and drone flyers up there despite new signage. It is affecting the behaviour of the wildlife and it has the potential to cause increasing problems if not addressed.
We aim to provide more information on the rules to remind people, not just those intent on prohibited activities, but those of us who try to point out to the rulebreakers that their activities are not allowed. We will provide information sheets, stickers, postcards, t-shirts, posters - whatever we can afford to produce in order to help spread the word and try to encourage people to respect this beautiful area and follow the rules.
Our first goal is to provide information posters, flyers and sticker sets in multiple languages to the restaurants and retailers at locations that feed the hiking routes. These include Harder Kulm, Restaurant Jägerstübli Lombachalp, Habkern, Interlaken, Ringgenberg, Niederried and Oberried am Brienzersee communities as well as Brienzer Rothorn Kulm, Sorenberg-Schonenboden and Kemmeriboden-Bad.