Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall

Schladming / Haus-Aich-Gossenberg, Styria (Steiermark), Austria

About Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall


Hiking Distance: 1.4km round trip (to mouth of lake); 4km round trip (to waterfall)
Suggested Time: 45 minutes round trip (to mouth of lake); 2 hours round trip (to waterfall)

Date first visited: 2018-07-03
Date last visited: 2018-07-03

Waterfall Latitude: 47.36459
Waterfall Longitude: 13.81887

The Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall (or Steirischer Bodensee Wasserfall) had to have been one of the most scenically situated waterfalls that I encountered on our epic Germany and Austria trip in the Summer of 2018.

It was an impressively tall waterfall fronted by the reflective Bodensee Lake, which turned out to be only the lowest out of three lakes.

Steirischer_Bodensee_051_07032018 - Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall across the scenic lake Bodensee near Schladming, Austria
Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall across the scenic lake Bodensee near Schladming, Austria

As you can see from the photo above, this waterfall was really more about the lakeside scenery while the waterfall acted more like a scenic backdrop.

By the way, they had to put the Steirischer (Styrian) in front of the name Bodensee because there was a much larger Bodensee (Lake Constance) way over by the border with Germany and Switzerland.

I think it’s because the Styrian version of the lake was smaller and more intimate that the lake possessed a more mirror-like quality in addition to being a much quieter alpine experience.

Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall Trail Description – hiking to Steirischer Bodensee Lake

From the car park by the Seewigtal Stüberl, I then followed a well-used trail that led right past the cafe.

Steirischer_Bodensee_010_07032018 - The paved Bodenseeweg following along the Seewigtalbach
The paved Bodenseeweg following along the Seewigtalbach

By the way, this car park sat right at the intersection of the left (west) approach from Haus im Ennstal and the right (east) approach from Aich (see directions below).

Beyond the cafe, I then hiked roughly 25 minutes along paved path as it gently followed the Bodenseeweg alongside the Seewigtalbach.

This stretch went for about 700m as it slowly revealed parts of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall en route.

Eventually, the pavement ended right at the mouth of the beautiful Steirischer Bodensee Lake.

Steirischer_Bodensee_025_07032018 - Context of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall across the scenic lake Bodensee as seen from the mouth of the lake
Context of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall across the scenic lake Bodensee as seen from the mouth of the lake

At the mouth of the lake, there was a trout farm as well as another accommodation or cafe called the Gasthof Forellenhof.

While the views from here were very captivating and compelled me to linger for quite a while trying to figure out how best to compose several photos of the scene, I also took the time to get closer to the waterfall.

Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall Trail Description – hiking to waterfall

At this point, I had a choice of direction to take since there was a loop trail that went completely around the lake.

The continuation to the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall was at the exact opposite end of the lake so there wasn’t any advantage of going one way or the other.

Steirischer_Bodensee_092_07032018 - Approaching the head of the Steirischer Bodensee Lake with the waterfall still further upstream
Approaching the head of the Steirischer Bodensee Lake with the waterfall still further upstream

I opted to keep right and walk the loop in a counterclockwise manner.

So after another 750m or so of walking around the western shore of the lake (taking me another 25 minutes or so), I reached the junction at the far end of the lake.

Along the way, I noticed that there was some degree of sedimentation on the lake as it transformed from a body of water to a swamp and then ultimately to a muddy area at its head.

That made me wonder if this lake’s eventual future would be a meadow in much the same way that Mirror Lake in Yosemite National Park wound up becoming in the drier Summer months.

Steirischer_Bodensee_149_07032018 - Pressing forward from the head of the Steirischer Bodensee to the base of the waterfall
Pressing forward from the head of the Steirischer Bodensee to the base of the waterfall

In any case, I continued on from there as the path now started climbing in earnest.

After going up a series of inclines and switchbacks, the path degenerated more into a narrower series of switchbacks with some mild degree of hiking between large boulders.

After another 500m or so of the pretty tiring uphill climb, I finally reached the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall.

It took me a little over an hour to get here from the car park.

Steirischer_Bodensee_114_07032018 - Looking right up from the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall
Looking right up from the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall

While the falls looked shorter from this up close, I was able to feel some of the refreshing light spray while also glimpsing the lake and Seewigtal Valley from a different and more elevated perspective.

This was my turnaround point though it was apparently possible to continue on with this hike towards the other higher alpine lakes and huts (and likely more waterfalls).

On the return hike, I opted to take the trail going over the bridge spanning a pair of converging streams to complete the loop.

This section of the hike put me back towards the mouth of the Steirishcer Bodensee Lake in an 800m stretch from the junction at the head of the lake.

Steirischer_Bodensee_126_07032018 - Looking back towards the Steirischer Bodensee Lake from the foot of the waterfall
Looking back towards the Steirischer Bodensee Lake from the foot of the waterfall

By the time I made it back to the car park, I wound up hiking a total of around 4km, and I spent about 2 hours away from the car.

Authorities

The Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall resides near the town of Schladming in the state of Styria (Steiermark), Austria. It may be administered by the Schladming government. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you can try visiting their website.

Steirischer_Bodensee_005_07032018 - The cafe (Seewigtal Stüberl) serving up organic and gluten free stuff that Julie would have appreciated, which sat right at the trailhead to the Steirischer Bodensee
Steirischer_Bodensee_007_07032018 - On the gentle trail following alongside the Seewigtalbach en route to the Steirischer Bodensee
Steirischer_Bodensee_008_07032018 - Looking way in the distance towards the top part of some waterfall, but I don't think it's the same as the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_012_07032018 - The paved walkway on the Bodenseeweg alongside the Seewigtalbach slowly revealed the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall in the distance
Steirischer_Bodensee_013_07032018 - Walking by some kiosk or interpretive exhibit or sign along the Bodenseeweg en route to the Steirischer Bodensee
Steirischer_Bodensee_015_07032018 - About to reach the head of the Steirischer Bodensee with more of the waterfall being revealed the further I went
Steirischer_Bodensee_021_07032018 - Looking in the distance towards the Steirischer Bodensee Wasserfall on the far end of the Steirischer Bodensee Lake
Steirischer_Bodensee_023_07032018 - Context of the Steirischer Bodensee Wasserfall with people walking the loop trail around the lake's shores
Steirischer_Bodensee_028_07032018 - It was interesting to see some kind of trout farm or something like that at the mouth of the Steirischer Bodensee
Steirischer_Bodensee_031_07032018 - Looking over the trout farm towards the Gasthof Forellen at the mouth of the Steirischer Bodensee Lake
Steirischer_Bodensee_032_07032018 - Closer look at the trout in the trout farm on Steirischer Bodensee
Steirischer_Bodensee_033_07032018 - It was hard to pry myself away from the gorgeous view over the Steirischer Bodensee and its waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_038_07032018 - Contextual look across the Steirischer Bodensee Lake with people chilling out around it as well as some people boating within it
Steirischer_Bodensee_060_07032018 - Another picture post card view over Steirischer Bodensee and the waterfall from the mouth of the lake
Steirischer_Bodensee_072_07032018 - Walking by the Gasthof Forellen en route to the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall going in a counterclockwise direction around the lake
Steirischer_Bodensee_075_07032018 - Looking between some charming infrastructure from the Gasthof Forellen across the Steirischer Bodensee towards the waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_078_07032018 - Contextual look at the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall dwarfing the trail, the people, and the shacks closer to the head of the lake
Steirischer_Bodensee_082_07032018 - Closer look at the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall while continuing with the counterclockwise loop hike to get closer to the base of it
Steirischer_Bodensee_084_07032018 - Context of the trail going around the shore of the Steirischer Bodensee en route to the base of the waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_087_07032018 - Towards the head of the Steirischer Bodensee, I noticed that the lake went from body of water and became more of a swamp or a meadow, which made me think that it was going through some degree of sedimentation
Steirischer_Bodensee_090_07032018 - Continuing with the hike around the western shore of the Steirischer Bodensee Lake en route to the waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_095_07032018 - Looking across the head of the Steirischer Bodensee towards some thin cascade feeding a separate stream that wasn't part of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall's watercourse
Steirischer_Bodensee_096_07032018 - Continuing beyond the bridge and onto the ascending trail leading up to the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_105_07032018 - Continuing beyond the fork at the head of the lake and towards the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall where there was a bit more picnicking activity going on
Steirischer_Bodensee_107_07032018 - Signage pointing the way further to the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall and beyond
Steirischer_Bodensee_108_07032018 - Now the trail became considerably narrower and rockier as I was making the final tiring ascent to the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_109_07032018 - Getting closer to the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall's base as the narrower and rougher trail continued climbing
Steirischer_Bodensee_111_07032018 - At this trail junction, I could have kept right to continue the long uphill climb beyond the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall. Instead, I kept left
Steirischer_Bodensee_116_07032018 - Looking back at the trail leading up to the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_120_07032018 - Looking right up at the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall right from its base
Steirischer_Bodensee_122_07032018 - Starting the hike back down from the base of the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_134_07032018 - Another look towards the head of the Steirischer Bodensee as I was making my way back from the waterfall
Steirischer_Bodensee_140_07032018 - Following downstream along the Seewigtalbach en route to the bridge at the head of the Steirischer Bodensee after having my fill of the waterfall's base
Steirischer_Bodensee_141_07032018 - Looking back towards the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall from the west side of the loop trail as I was making my return
Steirischer_Bodensee_151_07032018 - Continuing on the eastern side of the Steirischer Bodensee after having crossed the bridges at the head of the lake
Steirischer_Bodensee_153_07032018 - Looking back at the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall from the east side of the lake as I was continuing my return hike after having experienced the waterfall's base
Steirischer_Bodensee_154_07032018 - Context of people on the gentle walk around the eastern side of the Steirischer Bodensee
Steirischer_Bodensee_155_07032018 - Another look back towards the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall together with the lake from its east side
Steirischer_Bodensee_157_07032018 - Approaching the Gasthof Forellen again as I was approaching the mouth of the Steirischer Bodensee from its eastern shores
Steirischer_Bodensee_175_07032018 - Another look back across the Steirischer Bodensee Lake and the waterfall reflected in its calm waters
Steirischer_Bodensee_177_07032018 - Looking back towards the Steirischer Bodensee Waterfall from near the mouth of the lake as I continued my return hike
Steirischer_Bodensee_182_07032018 - Back on the walk from the Steirischer Bodensee waterfall along the paved Bodenseeweg alongside the Seewigtal Valley. It was a popular yet flat and easy stroll to at least get to the mouth of the lake though I was headed in the opposite direction to the trailhead
Steirischer_Bodensee_184_07032018 - Returning to the Seewigtal Stüberl, where apparently they served up gluten free food, which was quite rare in rural Austria

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Like with the geographically nearby Riesachfälle, the Steirischer Bodensee was fairly straightforward to access.

I’ll describe how I did this drive from Salzburg since that was my base for doing this excursion, even though it wasn’t the closest starting point.

Then, I’ll describe the inland route both from Haus im Ennstal as well as from Aich.

Driving from Salzburg to the Steirischer Bodensee

From Salzburg, I made my way south from the city center along the B150 to the A10 autobahn further to the south of the city.

Once on the A10 autobahn, I then followed it for about 71km to the exit 63 for Altenmarkt, which led me to the B320.

After exiting the A10 and going on the B320, I then followed this road for another 32km towards the town of Haus im Ennstal.

Then, I took an exit at Ruperting (roughly 9km east of Schladming).

Once on the local streets, I headed south towards a four-way intersection and turned left onto Höhenfeldweg II.

I then followed this road east as I kept right onto Petersbergweg and continued on for 2km before keeping left onto the Seewigtal Road.

Next, I followed the Seewigtal Road for over 3km towards the car park by the Seewigtalstüberl.

Riesachfalle_Schladming_002_07032018 - The Seeleitenparkplatz at the end of the Untertal Road
The Seeleitenparkplatz at the end of the Untertal Road

There was a 3.5 euro toll (as of my July 2018 visit) on the Seewigtal Road to get here.

Overall, this drive would take about a pretty solid 90 minutes.

Driving from Aich to the Steirischer Bodensee

If I wanted to take a slightly longer approach, I could have also continued on the B320 for 2km to the exit onto Gössenbergstraße at the town of Aich.

Once off that ramp, I’d continue on the road and keep right at the intersection to remain on Gössenbergstraße / Gössenbergweg eventually becoming the Seewigtal Straße.

The car park for Steirischer Bodensee was roughly 6km from Aich.

And like the western approach, there was a toll station not far into the Gössenbergstraße.

For context, Schladming was about 7km (under 15 minutes drive) east of Haus im Ennstal, 12km (also under 15 minutes drive) east of Aich, about 52km (about 45 minutes drive) east of Sankt Johann im Pongau, 91km (over an hour drive) east of Zell am See, 70km (about an hour drive) west of Admont, 79km (around 90 minutes drive) east then south from Hallstatt, and 99km (under 90 minutes drive) southeast of Salzburg.

Sweep covering the panorama across the Steirischer Bodensee Lake including the big waterfall on the opposite side


Semi-circular sweep from downstream to upstream right at the base of the waterfall

Tagged with: schladming, haus, aich, steirischer bodensee, seewigtal stuberl



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Visitor Reviews of this Waterfall:

Steirische Bodensee Waterfall (Austria) February 1, 2015 3:53 pm by Ruth Williams - The Steirische Bodensee Lake is an Alpine jewel set at 1,143 m (3750ft) in the Dachstein Mountains not far from the ski resort of Schladming. The waterfall is the backdrop to the valley and is beautifully reflected in the crystal clear water. An easy walk can be made around the lake or extended with a… ...Read More

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