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Thematic Trail

Panoramic hike from Mellau over the Kanisfluh to Au

Blick vom Gipfel der Kanisfluh über Au und Schoppernau
Nordwestlich unterhalb der Kanisfluh breitet sich Mellau aus
Bergbahnen Mellau
Die Südflanke der Kanisfluh ist grasbewachsen.
Gipfel der Kanisfluh
Blick auf Mellau
Alpe Kanis
Au, Katholische Pfarrkirche Heiliger Leonhard 1
Liebliche Almlandschaft im Bereich der Wurzachalpe


Difficulty: schwer
Distance: 12.26 km
Ascent: 650 m
Descent: 1265 m
Duration: 5 h
Deepest point: 779 m
Highest point: 2042 m



  • Höhenprofil

    To the ibex on the mountain with the two faces

    The Kanisfluh, a freestanding massif situated southeast above Mellau, can be reached quite comfortably with the aid of the cable car. The descent to Au promises wonderful nature experiences.

    When a mountain rises freely, a magnificent panorama seems to be guaranteed. The same is true for the 2044 m high Kanisfluh. The massif itself can hardly be overlooked between other summits in the near and farer surroundings. This is not only due to the fact that it has no immediate neighbors. No, its shape also contributes to this. The Kanisfluh is actually a small, narrow massif, oriented in a west-east direction, with a equally steep and precipitous north face, whereas towards the south, it shows a different face with gentle, often grass-covered slopes. The highest point, which is indicated in the maps under the name “Holenke”, can hardly be seen from the valley.

    In terms of panorama: On the dip in the west below the summit, hikers can – for the first time during the hike – take a look northwards into the depth or into the distance which makes them hungry for more. The hunger for great views will finally be satisfied at the highest point. Lake Constance in the northwest, Vorderwald and Hinterwald with the villages of Au and Schoppernau, the Allgäu Alps, the Lechquellen Mountains, summits of the Silvretta – those and other highlights reward you for the manageable effort of the ascent.

    Apart from the summit panorama, the tour is characterized by a rocky cirque just at the beginning, bounded on the north by the Kanisalpe, by cozy, quaint alps in the further course and by a remarkable, dense deciduous and mixed forest, providing shelter from heavy rain in the last section. As the Kanisfluh is the home of an ibex colony, hikers also have the pleasure of extraordinary faunally experiences. One needs quite a lot of bad luck in order not to see the animals. They can often be found in higher altitudes. "Keep your eyes open," is the motto. Moreover, with a little luck, you can discover chamois on the Kanisfluh.

    Author: Array

  • Difficulty: schwer




    Altitude: 2042 m 779 m Best season:
    Safety instructions:


    140 Alpine emergencies throughout Austria

    144 Alpine emergencies Vorarlberg

    112 Euro-emergency call (works with any cell phone/phone network)

    More info & links:

    Refreshment stops: Bergrestaurant Simma, Alphof Roßstelle, Kanisalpe, Wurzachalpe, Obere Alpe, Alpengasthof Edelweiß

  • Directions

    From Mellau with the gondola cableway (Mellaubahn) to the summit station on the Alpe Roßstelle. Here, we orientate ourselves towards “Kanisfluh” and follow a broad footpath upwards, ascending in the light forest. Later, a brief section heads down. In a rocky cirque, bounded in the north, we follow the almost flat path until shortly before the Kanisalpe (cart path). From there, a carriage path continues practically at the same height or moderately ascending to the forest, where it leads gently uphill. In the forest, at the information board about the wildlife habitats around the Kanisfluh, we do not switch to the steep path marked with “Kanisfluh”, but stay along the carriage path towards „Wurzachalpe“. A little later, we arrive at the serviced Wurzachalpe. From here, the broad carriage path runs across open terrain for a few meters and up the saddle. At the highest point, we turn left (“Kanisfluh – 50 minutes“). We follow a carriage path for a short distance before a marked steep path climbs very directly up the steepening southern slope of the Kanisfluh. After that, the path winds up the steep slope less directly to the dip west and beneath the summit of the Kanisfluh (occasionally ropes). From the saddle, a broad grass-covered ridge leads eastwards up to the summit (2044 m) without difficulties.

    At first, the descent follows the same route. Just before the saddle to the east of the Wurzachalpe, however, we turn left towards “Au” and walk downhill over gentle meadows (including almost flat sections). At the altitude of the Obere Alpe, we stay on the marked track. Afterwards, the steep path leads slightly downwards along a ridge and into the light forest. Near Alpengasthof Edelweiß, it leads into a carriage path. Here, we follow the sign for “Au über Ahornen” and walk down along the broad carriage path. Immediately afterwards, at a split, we orientate ourselves towards “Ahornenvorsäß”/ ”Au” and turn left onto another carriage path. It runs gently descending across open terrain and after the Alpe Feuerstein, it turns into a footpath which leads into the forest (later steep path). Having left the forest, we soon reach Ahornenvorsäß. We pass the houses along the carriage road towards “Au”, and turn left towards “Au über Argenstein” at the split. Finally, the route follows a steep path through a deciduous and mixed forest down to Argenstein in Au. We cross the Bregenzer Ache and take the bus line 40 (bus stop Jaghausen near the church) back to Mellau, or more precisely, to the starting point.

    Start Mellau, summit station of the Mellaubahn (gondola cableway) on the Alpe Roßstellle
    Geogr. 47.32838 N 9.88703 E
    Destination Au (bus stop Jaghausen at the church)


  • Public transportation:

    Coming from Bregenz: bus line 830 (Bregenz – Bezau) + bus line 850 (Bezau – Mellau), bus line 840 (Bregenz – Mellau)

    Coming from Dornbirn: bus line 870 (Dornbirn – Bersbuch roundabout) + bus line 840 (Bersbuch roundabout – Mellau), bus line 850 (Dornbirn – Mellau)



    Route Planner


    Mellau cable car