Ossiach Canyon Hike
With beautiful wooded areas, pristine Alpine lakes, and gratifying views, hiking in Austria is not to be missed. In the state of Carinthia (German: Kärnten) there is a gorgeous canyon hike in the town of Ossiach. If you find yourself near Ossiach, I highly recommend this rewarding hike that takes you along a brook and up a canyon to your final destination of a lake in the woods.
I had heard about this hike from a friend of mine who was looking for a spot to go mushroom hunting. Based on his positive reviews, my partner, pup, and I decided to pack a lunch and our trusty copy of All the Rain Promises for an afternoon in the woods in search of mushrooms. The first half of the hike is very steep, but the brook and small waterfalls make it all worth it. While on the hike I spotted several Fire Salamanders so be sure to look out for some new forest friends while you are there. In terms of mushroom hunting, we found Chanterelles, Black Trumpets, Honey mushrooms, and various Amanitas. We hiked the trail on the first day of October and the weather was perfect. The leaves were just beginning to fall, the trail was fairly dry since there was no recent rainfall, and the weather was cool without being cold. We absolutely plan on hiking this trail again, hopefully, you can enjoy it too!
LOCATION: Ossiacher Landesstrasse/ Rappitsch Creek Bridge. The easiest landmark is the “Fischerstüberl” on Ossiach-Rappitsch. From the Fischerstüberl parking lot, face lake Ossiach and look to your right – you will see a small creek bridge with a trail next to it – this is the trailhead.
GETTING THERE: the trailhead is easiest to reach by car, take the Ossiacher Landesstrasse (L49) and navigate to the Fischerstüberl on Ossiach-Rappitsch. You can park in the Fischerstüberl parking lot or the campground parking lot by the Rappitsch Creek Bridge. By bus, take a ÖBB- Postbus from Villach or Feldkirchen to Ossiach – Rappitsch. Bus schedules are not very reliable so I encourage you to contact ÖBB for more information.
DISTANCE: 2.2 miles
ELEVATION: 1306 ft
WHEN TO GO: April – October
THE TRAIL: follow signage for “Ossiach Tauernteich” and stay close to the brook. There are several turn-off points on the trail, so be sure to just follow the brook to stay on track. Like all trails in Carinthia, painted Austrian flags help signal that you are in the right direction. This trail is not a loop, to return to the trailhead just turn back the way you came. The second half of the trail takes you through the ruins of an old mill before you reach the lake.
- Wear good shoes, the first half of the trail is very steep and rocky
- Trail can be slippery, especially after rainfall
- There are several picnic spots around the lake at the summit of the trail
- No bathrooms
- No parking fees
Credit to the Villach tourism office for the technical information about the trail.
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