Photo by Roberto Moiola/age fotostock
First, make your way by car or PostBus to the top of the Flüela Pass, situated in a Romansh-speaking region of Canton Graubünden at an altitude of 7,818 feet and amid rugged, stream-laced highland moors. From the road's summit, begin the even more rugged ascent to the Jöriseen, a trio of Alpine lakes, each a different shade of aquamarine. The best, and really the only, way to see the area is via the Jöriseen Rundtour, an intense four-to-five-hour hike that takes you straight up past pastures and scree to the summit of Winterlücke. The route has an abundance of wildflowers like gentians and alpine orchids, and birds like shy wheatears and alpine choughs. At the trail’s end, you can refuel on tasty homemade venison sausage at Flüela Hospiz, a weathered inn and restaurant near two lakes, the Schottensee and the smaller Schwarzsee, a favorite of fly-fisherfolk. It's run by Erika, a fifth-generation proprietor who offers hikers a warm welcome at the conclusion of their trek.
By Adam H. Graham, AFAR Contributor
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Jöriseen, 7250 Klosters-Serneus, Switzerland