Hintertux / Tux Municipality, Tyrol (Tirol), Austria

About Schleierfall

Hiking Distance: 7km round trip
Suggested Time: 2-2.5 hours

Date first visited: 2018-07-18
Date last visited: 2017-07-18

Waterfall Latitude: 47.11279
Waterfall Longitude: 11.66707

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The Schleierfall (I’ve also seen it called the Schleierwasserfall; “Veil Waterfall”) was probably the most impressive of the waterfalls in the Hintertux Resort Area. Sitting where the Weitentalbach plunged at least 30m, it sat tucked away beneath the Weitental Valley, which was a side valley above the Tuxertal (i.e. the main valley containing the Hintertux Resort Area). Therefore, I had to earn my visit with a bit of a strenuous uphill hike to reach it.

From the Hintertux Resort Area, I walked followed the signs and walked along a gently sloping path along the foot of the west end of the Tuxertal Valley. After about 500m, the trail started to reach a part where the climb became steeper while affording me views back towards the Hintertux Resort Area showing parts of the Hintertux Glacier as well as long cascades coming from the melting ice and down towards the head of the valley as the Kesselfall, Schraubenfall, and other waterfalls further upstream.

Hintertux_232_07182018 - Looking back towards the Hintertux Resort Area as well as the cascades tumbling down from the Hintertux Glacier towards the Kesselfall at the bottom
Looking back towards the Hintertux Resort Area as well as the cascades tumbling down from the Hintertux Glacier towards the Kesselfall at the bottom

During this climb, while I was mesmerized by the scenery at the head of the Tuxertal Valley, I was also able to look further down the valley in the other direction towards the town of Hintertux as it sat in a classic V-shaped valley. After getting through a little fence, the trail forked. To the right, the trail climbed a bit more gently (albeit away from the Schleier Waterfall before coming back) as it would eventually make its way to the Bichlalm. So the shortest route to the falls would be to keep left and continue up the narrow but steep trail.

It would eventually lead up to a sign that was somewhat misleading as it made no mention of the Schleierfall. I actually made the mistake of giving into my doubts and turned back at this point, but with hindsight being 20/20, I should have continued along this narrow trail as it would go through a rope stile before entering a forested area.

The trail then continued along the forested path, which was a little rocky and steep in parts. Eventually, the forested part would give way to expansive views once again before traversing a grassy area flanking the Weintalbach. At nearly a kilometer from the fork with the trail to the Bichlalm, I would reach a trail junction next to a bridge over the Weintalbach. Turning right at this junction, I would then reach the next fork in the trail shortly thereafter.

Hintertux_331_07182018 - Approaching the Schleierwasserfall from the bottom
Approaching the Schleierwasserfall from the bottom

Taking this fork on the left, the path then steeply climbed an extensive grassy area alongside the Weintalbach as the trail was making its way up to the Schleierfall. After another 700m of this climb, I would finally reach the base of the Schleierfall’s main drop.

However, the trail continued nearly another 100m uphill before reaching a much wider (albeit rockier) trail. This was the trail that would ultimately make it to the Tuxerjoch Haus, which was a high mountain hut. For the purposes of experiencing the waterfall, however, it was sufficient for me to get up to the fence and benches for an attractive profile and top-down view towards the Schleierfall with the surrounding mountains as the backdrop.

That was my turnaround point, and so to end the excursion, I had a choice of going back down the way I came (for the shortest amount of hiking) or taking the wide road back down to the even wider Bichlalm Trail (with a cantina at the alm itself) before continuing the descent via a much longer and more roundabout path. The shortest path was roughly 6km round trip from the Hintertux Resort Area. Meanwhile, visiting the Schleierfall via the alm would have added another 4km in one direction.

I wound up spending over 2 hours on this trail, but some of that time was wasted on mistakenly turning back and taking the Bichlalm Trail (when I shouldn’t have), and then taking a very steep “shortcut” to cut from the lower switchback of the Bichlalm Trail to the upper switchback of the Bichlalm Trail along some former snowmobile path or something.

Hintertux_007_07182018 - Looking towards the village at the Hintertux Glacier Resort Area from the car park
Hintertux_165_07182018 - Looking over towards the big car park as I was starting on the hike towards the Schleierfall
Hintertux_169_07182018 - Looking back towards the Hintertux Resort Area as I was walking further away from it and on the trail leading to both the Schleierfall and the Bichlalm
Hintertux_175_07182018 - Bogensport means archery in German, so this was not a place to make a wrong turn and inadvertently end up in the line of fire
Hintertux_178_07182018 - Another look back towards the Hintertux Resort Area as I continued on the initial gentle incline as the trail started to leave the Tuxertal and climb up towards the Weitental (Wide Valley)
Hintertux_181_07182018 - As I continued on the trail up to the Schleierfall, I noticed this cascading waterfall beneath the year-round snow and icefields of the Hintertux Glacier
Hintertux_185_07182018 - Contextual view of the waterfalls tumbling between the Hintertux Glacier and the village as seen from the Schleierfall Trail
Hintertux_188_07182018 - Zoomed in view of the Kesselfall, which was perhaps the easiest waterfall to reach in the Hintertux Resort Area, but this view came from the Schleierfall Trail
Hintertux_203_07182018 - Zoomed in on the uppermost of the waterfalls spilling right behind the Hintertux Village from beneath the Hintertux Glacier as seen from the Schleierfall Trail
Hintertux_213_07182018 - Another contextual view of the waterfalls between the Hintertux Glacier and the Hintertux Resort Village, but this was a more direct view from the Schleierfall Trail
Hintertux_216_07182018 - Context of the Schleierfall Trail with the scenery at the head of the Tuxertal Valley beneath the Hintertux Glacier
Hintertux_233_07182018 - Now the Schleierfall Trail was climbing more steeply as the path followed along this fencing
Hintertux_240_07182018 - Looking back at the climbing trail as I was getting higher above the Tuxertal Valley floor and closer to the Schleierfall (though I still had a ways to go from here)
Hintertux_241_07182018 - Continuing the climb further up along the Schleierfall Trail
Hintertux_245_07182018 - The climb on the initial part of the Schleierfall Trail was pretty relentless, especially since this narrower trail branched off from the Bichlalm Trail
Hintertux_246_07182018 - Looking back towards the town of Hintertux with the longer trail towards the Bichlalm down below
Hintertux_250_07182018 - Approaching the sign pointing the way towards Tuxerjoch (though no indication that the Schleierfall was that way, too)
Hintertux_393_07182018 - Beyond what I'm calling the 'misleading sign' was a rope style also kind of making me wonder if it was a trail closure or if it was just something I could simply step over and continue walking on towards Schleierfall
Hintertux_389_07182018 - The Schleierfall Trail now entered into a shaded and wooded area as the narrow trail continued its ascent
Hintertux_383_07182018 - At this point, the Schleierfall Trail went high enough that the Hintertux Resort Area was way down below
Hintertux_376_07182018 - Looking back at the upper end of the shaded and wooded section of the Schleierfall hike
Hintertux_373_07182018 - As I was getting closer to the top of this part of the climb for the Schleierfall, I noticed this facility, which I wondered if it might have been a gauge
Hintertux_369_07182018 - Looking back at the grassy part of the trail as I had made it up to a trail junction very close to the bridge above the Weintalbach
Hintertux_365_07182018 - Looking back at the Weintalbach and bridge right at the trail junction where I made a right and then a left to continue towards the Schleierfall
Hintertux_359_07182018 - Looking back towards the mountains flanking the Tuxertal from the final ascent up towards the Schleierfall
Hintertux_357_07182018 - On the ascent towards the Schleierfall on the Weintalbach
Hintertux_341_07182018 - Getting closer to the Schleierfall as the final ascent continued its climb
Hintertux_333_07182018 - Full view of the Schleierfall towering over a few hikers checking it out near its base
Hintertux_309_07182018 - The trail actually continued climbing beyond the waterfall towards this wider trail, where going downhill from here would have gone to the Bichlalm, but going up behind me would have gone up to the Tuxerjoch Haus
Hintertux_300_07182018 - Context of the climbing trail towards the Tuxerjoch Haus with the Schleierfall plunging to the left of the trail
Hintertux_293_07182018 - Attractive elevated view of the Schleierwasserfall from the upper trail leading to Tuxerjoch Haus
Hintertux_287_07182018 - Looking back at a hiker making the descent to get closer to the base of the Schleierfall from the upper trail
Hintertux_391_07182018 - Looking towards the Hintertux Town as I was making my way back to the Hintertux Resort Area after having my fill of the Schleierfall
Hintertux_400_07182018 - Making the final descent and approach for the Hintertux Resort Area
Hintertux_406_07182018 - Back at the pretty busy car park for the Hintertux Glacier Resort Area
Hintertux_278_07182018 - This was the view of the other trail junction connecting with the Schleierfall as seen from the Bichlalm Trail
Hintertux_269_07182018 - This was the flatter trail from the Bichlalm to the Schleierfall
Hintertux_274_07182018 - From the Bichlalm Trail, I noticed these interesting things set up on the mountainsides, which I think were meant for avalanche control or mitigation
Hintertux_265_07182018 - This would be the view had I did the longer trail to the Bichlalm after wrapping up the Schleierfall with the Hintertux Town way down in the Tuxertal Valley


The Schleierfall or Schleierwasserfall was best accessed from the Hintertux Glacier Resort Area, which sat at the very head of the Tuxertal Valley. Since we were based in Innsbruck when we made our visit, I’ll describe the driving directions from there. It was also just as feasible to access Hintertux from the east along the Salzachtal before reaching Zell am Ziller, and then climbing up to the Tuxertal.

Hintertux_002_07182018 - The big car park at the Hintertux Glacier Resort Area
The big car park at the Hintertux Glacier Resort Area

From Innsbruck, we drove east on the A12 autobahn for about 36km before taking the exit 40 (Zillertal). Turning right and heading south towards Zillertal on the B169, we continued down this busy road for another 32km as we passed through the Zillertal Valley as well as Zell am Ziller before turning right onto the road ascending towards Gstan and ultimately towards Tuxertal. At this point, there were signs pointing the way.

Finally, we followed this road (I believe it’s also called the L6) to its end in nearly another 18km as there was a huge car park right at the Hintertux Resort Area.

Overall, this drive took us almost 90 minutes, but there was a pretty solid delay in there due to a combination of stopped traffic (stau) and road construction. So conceivably, this drive could be a bit less than what we experienced.

For geographical context, Zell am Ziller was about 61km (under an hour drive) east of Innsbruck, 57km (about an hour drive) west of Mittersill, about 85km (over 90 minutes drive) west of Zell am See, and 120km (over 90 minutes drive) southeast from Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.

Brief video showing an elevated view of the Schleierfall from the upper trail

Sweep showing the surrounding scenery as well as examining the Schleierfall from its base

Checking out the waterfalls behind the Hintertux Resort area as I was higher up on the Schleierfall Trail

Tagged with: hintertux, weitental, bichlalm, tuxer joch haus, austria, waterfall, zillertal

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