Grossglockner Waterfalls

Heiligenblut am Grossglockner / Hohe Tauern National Park, Carinthia (Karnten), Austria

About Grossglockner Waterfalls


Hiking Distance: roadside
Suggested Time: allow at least 4 hours

Date first visited: 2018-07-12
Date last visited: 2018-07-12

Waterfall Latitude: 47.08521
Waterfall Longitude: 12.77382

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The Grossglockner Waterfalls (or Großglockner Wasserfälle) page is kind of my homage to the many roadside waterfalls that we spotted and stopped for along the famous Grossglockner High Alpine Road (or Großglockner Hochalpenstraße).

While there were probably too many waterfalls to count, the main waterfalls I’m highlighting here were the ones that we’ve noticed and identified.

Grossglockner_148_07122018 - Looking towards a cirque by the Grossglockner High Alpine Road containing a couple of waterfalls where one of them might be the Nassfeld Waterfall
Looking towards a cirque by the Grossglockner High Alpine Road containing a couple of waterfalls where one of them might be the Nassfeld Waterfall

These included…

  • the Fensterbach Waterfall
  • the Nassfeld Waterfall
  • and a handful of cascades where I’m not sure of their names on the north face of the mountains that the road ascended

The other waterfalls that I didn’t mention that were accessible from the Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse each had their own writeups.

Grossglockner_105_07122018 - The Fensterbach Waterfall
The Fensterbach Waterfall

These included…

Experiencing the Grossglockner Waterfalls – the Fensterbach Waterfall

Grossglockner_086_07122018 - Context of the Fensterbach Waterfall and not the Energy Shower Waterfall as someone had suggested on Google Maps
Context of the Fensterbach Waterfall and not the Energy Shower Waterfall as someone had suggested on Google Maps

We stumbled upon the Fensterbach Waterfall, which was a pair of converging waterfalls on the Fensterbach Creek.

We happened to find this waterfall as we were taking the spur out-and-back road leaving the B107 Road onto the Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse, which ultimately led us to the dead-end at the view of the Pasterze Glacier.

Looking downslope from the road, I noticed another tall waterfall deep in the ravine below, which I suspect might be the Leiterbach Wasserfall.

The pullout fronting the Fensterbach Waterfall was about 3km from the turnoff leaving the B107 Road.

Grossglockner_084_07122018 - Looking downstream from the Fensterbach Waterfall towards a distant waterfall that I think might be the Leiterbach Wasserfall
Looking downstream from the Fensterbach Waterfall towards a distant waterfall that I think might be the Leiterbach Wasserfall

On a side note, I’ve seen the Fensterbach Waterfall erroneously referred to as the “Energiedusche Wasserfall” because there was an interpretive sign here discussing how negative ions help the body’s lungs and nervous system.

Thus the sign’s title was translated as the “Energy Shower Waterfall” and it was not the actual name of this waterfall!

Experiencing the Grossglockner Waterfalls – the Nassfeld Waterfall

The next waterfall that we stopped for was the Nassfeld Waterfall.

We spotted it at a pullout at a hairpin turn (roughly 3.3km west of the Fensterbach Waterfalls) near a small dam holding up a reservoir that gave the water a gorgeous blue-green color when the sun was out.

Grossglockner_137_07122018 - Context of some waterfalls tumbling at the cirque harboring the Nassfeld Waterfall, including one beneath a dam
Context of some waterfalls tumbling at the cirque harboring the Nassfeld Waterfall, including one beneath a dam

From this pullout, we walked a short distance on a gravel track that led us alongside the reservoir right in between a pair of waterfalls spilling from opposite sides of the cirque we were in.

To be honest, I’m not sure which of the two waterfalls was the Nassfeld Waterfall.

Was it the one to the left nearest to us?

Or was it the one across the reservoir that seemed to be bigger and more significant (let alone more picturesque).

Grossglockner_192_07122018 - Looking upwards at a side cascade that was opposite the one behind a reservoir. I couldn't tell if this was the Nassfeld Waterfall or whether the one across it was it
Looking upwards at a side cascade that was opposite the one behind a reservoir. I couldn’t tell if this was the Nassfeld Waterfall or whether the one across it was it

Whatever the case, we were able to experience this short stop in about 15 minutes before heading back to the car.

Experiencing the Grossglockner Waterfalls – the rest of the roadside waterfalls

As for the remaining waterfalls, the ones on the North Face of the mountains upon which the Grossglockner Road climbed past the first four or five numbered stops each may have names.

However, I’m unable to correlate what we saw with what the maps suggested.

In any case, these north face waterfalls could have fallen on the…

  • Traunerbach (beneath the Edelweissspitze)
  • Pfandlbach (as the Oberer Pfandelschartenbachfall and Unterer Pfandelschartenbachfall)
  • Fuscherfall on the slopes of Käfertal and Karwand
  • Judenbach
  • Wiesbach.
Walcher_Waterfall_015_07132018 - Some of the mountain cascades tumbling down the north face of the mountains upon which the Grossglockner Road would climb
Some of the mountain cascades tumbling down the north face of the mountains upon which the Grossglockner Road would climb

There were also a few more cascades we spotted and didn’t stop for except for one at the Guttalbach.

This was where a pair of mountain cascades fed this creek that went beneath the B107 and further down into the Möll River way downstream.

Indeed, the waterfalls mentioned on this page merely indicated the kind of mindblowing scenery to be had on the Grossglockner High Alpine Road.

Of course, you can’t miss the Grossglockner Peak and the Pasterze Glacier, which was said to be Eastern Europe’s longest glacier left standing.

Grossglockner_299_07122018 - Context of the Grossglockner Peak and what's left of the Pasterze Glacier from the end of the spur of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road. The Grossglockner Waterfalls were merely side attractions to the scenery along this road
Context of the Grossglockner Peak and what’s left of the Pasterze Glacier from the end of the spur of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road. The Grossglockner Waterfalls were merely side attractions to the scenery along this road

There was also the Heiligenblut town as well as numerous other overlooks including the Edelweissspitze and some surprise tarns and lakes en route.

The Grossglockner Waterfalls were but just one aspect of the sights here.

Authorities

The Grossglockner Waterfalls reside along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road between the towns of Fusch an der Grossglockner and Heiligenblut in the state of Carinthia (Kärnten), Austria. It may be administered by the Fusch government. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you can try visiting their website.

Grossglockner_002_07112018 - Looking towards the bottom of the Walcher Waterfall, which was at a pullout before the Grossglockner High Alpine Road northern toll station near Ferleiten
Grossglockner_020_07112018 - Another look at the Walcher Waterfall before continuing onto the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Walcher_Waterfall_209_07132018 - The hefty toll to drive on the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Walcher_Waterfall_226_07132018 - The Grossglockner Road approaching the mountains in the distance as well as the toll booth on the north side at Ferleiten
Walcher_Waterfall_006_07132018 - The toll stations to enter the Grossglockner High Alpine Road from the north
Walcher_Waterfall_133_07132018 - Closer look at some of the waterfalls tumbling down the north face of the Hohe Tauern range that could be seen from the Grossglockner Road
Grossglockner_039_07112018 - Looking down towards some waterfall that I think might be on the Wiesbach or Judenbach
Grossglockner_041_07112018 - Context of the waterfall and some of the low clouds still clinging onto the snowy mountains of the north face of the Hohe Tauern Range
Grossglockner_046_07112018 - The twisting Grossglockner High Alpine Road as it climbed its northern end
Grossglockner_061_07112018 - This might be the Fuscher Törl, though it didn't have the expansive views of the north side of Grossglockner Road that we were hoping for on the morning of our visit due to stubborn morning clouds
Grossglockner_064_07112018 - Looking downslope at another thin cascade dumping down the north face of the Hohe Tauern Range as seen from the Grossglockner Road
Grossglockner_079_07112018 - This was where some mountain cascades were feeding the Guttalbach as we were getting closer to the turnoff leading to the Pasterze Glacier
Grossglockner_081_07122018 - Context of the Fensterbach Waterfall and the roadside pullout fronting it along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_088_07122018 - Frontal look at the Fensterbach Waterfall across the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_091_07122018 - Sign suggesting the name of the creek of the Fensterbach Waterfall
Grossglockner_098_07122018 - Looking up from the railing in front of the Fensterbach Waterfall along the spur part of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_101_07122018 - Another closeup look at the Fensterbach and the converging cascades along the Grossglockner Road
Grossglockner_106_07122018 - Looking back at the context of some picnic tables and the roadside pullout in front of the Fensterbach Waterfall along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_116_07122018 - Looking back across the picnic tables and interpretive signs fronting the Fensterbach Waterfall along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_121_07122018 - Looking over a reservoir with some people walking alongside it towards what I think was the Nassfeld Waterfall as seen while driving the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_132_07122018 - Looking back at the Grossglockner High Alpine Road with the Margaritzenstaussee in the distance as seen from the pullout nearest to the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_140_07122018 - Context of the roadside pullout while looking ahead towards a cascade downstream from a dam wall just downstream of the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_156_07122018 - More zoomed in look at some accommodation or eatery down the road from the pullout near the Nassfeld Waterfall along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_163_07122018 - Another contextual look at the roadside pullout by the reservoir beneath the Nassfeld Waterfall along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_173_07122018 - Bright view of the reservoir as the sun came out and looking towards the Nassfeld Waterfall (I think) as seen from the nearest pullout along the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_180_07122018 - Looking towards the head of the cirque containing the Nassfeld Waterfall with a tubmling cascade coming in from the topleft while walking closer to the reservoir beneath the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_189_07122018 - This was the closest we'd get to the Nassfeld Waterfall before returning to the car to continue the drive up to the end of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road at the Pasterze Glacier
Grossglockner_203_07122018 - Looking ahead towards the cirque from the foot of the cascade across the Nassfeld Waterfall as seen on a short walk from the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_207_07122018 - Looking up the side cascade from its base while walking closer to the reservoir a short distance off the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_209_07122018 - Another look at the disjoint cascade opposite the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_219_07122018 - Context of a picnic table at the foot of a side cascade opposite the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_220_07122018 - Looking back towards the gravel path we walked on to get a closer look at the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_223_07122018 - Context of the switchbacking road before the gravel path that we took to get closer to the Nassfeld Waterfall
Grossglockner_227_07122018 - Looking towards the Gletscherbahn and the Grossglockner Peak with part of the Pasterze Glacier as we approached the end of the spur road of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road at its highest point
Grossglockner_236_07122018 - Direct look at what was left of the Pasterze Glacier as seen from the highest point of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_329_07122018 - More zoomed in look at the Pasterze Glacier
Grossglockner_331_07122018 - Looking back at the very built-up visitor center complex for the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Grossglockner_336_07122018 - Looking down at the Glestcherbahn with some side cascades spilling opposite the river downstream of the Pasterze Glacier
Grossglockner_359_07122018 - Outdoor tables fronting the Grossglockner Peak still stubbornly clinging to some morning clouds
Grossglockner_378_07122018 - Looking up at some kind of lookout structure built up by the Swarovski sponsor who also provided telescope optics within that structure
Grossglockner_395_07122018 - Last view of the lookout, which was the turnaround point of our drive out to the Pasterze Glacier and Grossglockner Peak at the end of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road

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To access the Grossglockner High Alpine Road (or Großglockner Hochalpenstraße), we could do the 48km drive from one of two different directions – the north or the south.

We’ll first describe the driving directions to the toll station on the north side from Zell am See.

We’ll also describe the directions to the toll station on the south side from Lienz.

Accessing the Grossglockner High Alpine Road from Zell am See

From the center of Zell am See, we drove south on the Brucker Bundestraße as it entered some tunnels leading me onto the B311 going south.

Walcher_Waterfall_001_07132018 - This was the toll station at the northern end of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road at Ferleiten or Fusch an der Grossglockner
This was the toll station at the northern end of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road at Ferleiten or Fusch an der Grossglockner

Once out of the tunnels, I remained on the B311 due south for another 4km before taking the ramp on the right to go south on the Glocknerstraße.

Note that if you’re coming from Sankt Johann im Pongau, then this road would be accessed from an off-ramp leaving the B311 at about 33km west of the city.

Once off the highway, turn left to go south on the Glocknerstraße.

While on the Glocknerstraße, the road then headed south for a little over 13km to the toll booths, where we had to pay 36 euros (as of 2018) to proceed onwards.

Grossglockner_055_07112018 - The Grossglockner Road climbing the north face of the mountains through the heart of the Hohe Tauern Range
The Grossglockner Road climbing the north face of the mountains through the heart of the Hohe Tauern Range

In any case, this 20km drive would take under 30 minutes.

Accessing the Grossglockner High Alpine Road from Lienz

Going in the opposite direction, from Lienz, we would drive on the B107 northeast towards Winklern.

Then, we’d continue driving north on the B107 for about 26km to the toll station just uphill from Heiligenblut.

Overall, this drive would take about 45 minutes.

Heiligenblut_040_07122018 - Heiligenblut harbored one of the toll stations, which was at the southern end of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road
Heiligenblut harbored one of the toll stations, which was at the southern end of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road

Note that the spur road leading to the dead-end at the Pasterze Glacier and the lookout for the Grossglockner Peak was 26km south of the tool booth at Ferleiten and about 4km north of the southern toll booth by Heiligenblut.

For geographical context, Zell am See was 14km (about 15 minutes drive) south of Saalfelden am Steinernen Meer, 28km (about 30 minutes drive) east of Mittersill, 40km (over 30 minutes drive) west of Sankt Johann im Pongau, and 92km (about 90 minutes drive) north of Lienz via the Felbertauern Road as opposed to the much slower Grossglockner Road, and 88km (under 1.5 hours drive) south of Salzburg.

Sweep of the scenery around the Fensterbach Waterfalls before ending off focusing on the waterfalls themselves


Long video dwelling on the beautiful scenery around the Nassfeld Waterfall

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Tagged with: grossglockner, pasterze, glacier, waterfalls, austria, hohe tauern, high alpine



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Visitor Reviews of this Waterfall:

Nassfeld Waterfall (Austria) June 12, 2016 12:36 pm by Ruth Williams - The Nassfeld Waterfall is high in the mountains of the Hohe Tauern National Park in Austria. Although at an alltitude of 2528m above sea level it is easily accessible as it sits beside the Grssglockner High Alpine Road. This spectacular toll road which is one of the highest in Europe is 48km long and has… ...Read More

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