Last Updated on 30/11/2022
Dachstein is a region around a mount Dachstein. Dachstein attractions include cable car system, rocky plateau Dachstein Krippenstein, observation point Five finger, three caves. All this are near Hallstatt, and that makes a region one of the best travel destinations in Austria.
We visit caves in the second post. In this post beautiful views of the lake and walk along the Dachstein Krippenstein glacial plateau.
Other posts about the region:
Hallstatt: Town, History and Museum, Salt Mine, Echerntal waterfalls and glacial garden, Around lake
Dachstein, Pongau, Tennegau map
How to get to Dachstein
From Hallstatt 10 min by bus 2572, runs once an hour, stops at the Obertraun station and at the cable car.
To the Mammoth (2) and Ice (1) Caves you need to climb by cable car, to Koppenbrüller (4) – walk. From the caves, the cable car rises even higher – to the Dachstein plateau (3). The panoramic map on the site www.dachsteinwelterbe.at will help you orientate.
Dachstein Krippenstein cable car
The cable car to the Dachstein plateau consists of three stages.
At the very bottom is the lower station of the cable car. Then the station of the cable car of the first stage (the first stage rises to the caves, numbers 1).
Then higher – the station of the cable car of the second stage. It is more than 2 thousand meters, Mount Krippenstein, observation deck “Five fingers” (2).
And finally, the station of the cable car of the third stage. It is little lower on the plateau. The total height difference is 742 m, the total length is 1743 m (3).
Such views are waiting for you at the cable car of the first stage. You can see a part of the lake with Hallstatt and Obertraun.
Krippenstein – these are stones, sometimes snowfields, a view of the highest mountain of this mountain range – Hoher Dachstein, the Dachstein plateau and the glacier.
There are many hiking trails. A pretty trail leads down from the first stage cable car station. You can also climb from the first stage to the second. Another option is to go down from the third stage station of the cable car (Gjaidalm plateau).
If you are not interested in a long walk, get off at least from the second stage station to the summit of Krippenstein. There is an observation deck “Five fingers“: five observation “fingers” hang at an altitude of 400 m above the abyss. From there, a beautiful view of the Hallstättersee opens up (about 15 minutes from the cable car up).
Obertraun, “high-speed” serpentine-descent down to the lower station of the cable car, and way to Koppenbrüllerhöhle.
We decided to walk around the plateau from Krippenstein and go to the third stage station of the cable car (3 hours 30 minutes). The road – stones, dwarf pines, snowfields and a complete lack of shade. In 15 minutes we were already tired of this road, and we decided to slightly “cut the way”. Fortunately, I saw a sign “Gjaidalm plateau, route 662, 1 h 30 min”.
The entire route 662 is marked with Austrian flags, it is impossible to get lost. But this is understandable – if there were no flags, the road would be lost instantly. It is almost impossible to navigate on the Dachstein plateau.
Everywhere you can see only cracks, crevices with sharp edges, thickets of dwarf pine and snowfields, on which slipping is a sure way to break your neck. All these holes and cracks were dug by the glacier, gradually receding. When we finally got on the road we had chosen initially, our legs were trembling. They, of course, did not lie – indeed 1 hour 30 minutes, but what an hour!
A little tip for adventure seekers. First, it’s good if you have trekking shoes and not simple running shoes. And also an alpenstock, or at least a solid stick, so as not to go down into the crevice from the snowfield. For example, from the one in the photo below.
And secondly, do not go down this road (as we do), but like all normal people, that is, up. Go from the third station of the cable car along the circular road counterclockwise, and then follow the sign 662 to the left. Going up this road is much easier, and most importantly, safer.
From the third station of the cable car (Gjaidalm plateau), mountain trails start to different peaks. If you don’t want to hike, you don’t need to go there. Station Krippenstein ist enough.
Do not forget that the last bus to Hallstatt leaves lower station at 5 pm, and the cable car end its work at about half past five.
Since these mountains are easily accessible by transport, but they are not so safe, here are the safety rules from the local website.
- 1. If you go to the mountains, inform the hotel staff about the route.
- 2. If an overnight stay is not foreseen, calculate the strength and time to return before dark. Warn the hotel staff if you are going to spend the night elsewhere. If you happen to be late and stay overnight elsewhere, notify the hotel staff so that your disappearance is not reported to the Mountain Police or the Alpine Rescue Team. Check when the last transport leaves.
- 3. Don’t forget the map.
- 4. Check the weather forecast. Wear suitable footwear and bring warm clothing and a raincoat.
- 5. Never leave the marked trail.
- 6. If an accident occurs and you need help, give an SOS signal. Any signal (fire, smoke, lantern light, shouts) is given 6 times per minute – 1 minute break – signal 6 times per minute.