Blaue Lacke (2.294 m)
The “Blaue Lacke” lake is a relatively recent product of climate change. After the most recent ice age, the ice masses retreated. They did not, however, continue to release their grip on the terrain, given that there were repeated occurrences of glacial advances. The last major advance is believed to have happened in 1850. This theory is substantiated by the occurrence of numerous moraines in the upper mountains. And it is behind one of these moraines that today’s “Blaue Lacke” Lake formed at 2,294 metres. The captivating interplay of colour in the water depends both on its underlying surface and the amount of cloud cover, but the effect is stunning either way. This region, once dominated by huge glaciers, suffered repeated catastrophes in the valley below as a result of seismic shifts in the mass of ice. Records report, for example, that in the 1770s the “Aperer Freiger” glacier experienced a huge fracture, sending an enormous block of ice down into the lower-lying waters with tremendous force before breaking up. The resulting torrent continued its destructive path across the Sulzenau Valley, the Grawa Waterfalls and all the way to Ruetz, causing major devastation in the valley. The old inn located in Ranalt was one of many buildings to be torn away.
Start / Destination: Middle station Stubaier Gletscherbahnen (2.300) / parking Sulzenauhütte (1.590 m)
Walking time: 4 ½ h
Altitude difference: ↑ 620 HM ↓ 1,320 HM
Refreshment options: Sulzenaualm (1.857 m), Sulzenauhütte (2.191 m), Dresdner Hütte (2308 m)
GETTING HERE / STARTING POINT
Either travel by bus or car to the end of the valley to the Stubai Glacier cable car valley station. There are numerous free parking spaces there.
First you take the Stubai Glacier cable car to the middle station and from there, you hike to the Dresdner Hut, which is located right next to the station and is the starting point for the tour. From there, follow the signs in the direction of ‘Peiljoch’. At the beginning, you cross the Fernaubach over a bridge, then go steeply up to the beautifully situated crossing, the Peiljoch. After a short descent, you reach the first destination, Sulzenausee lake, after about 2 hours of walking. From there, don’t follow the ‘Wilde Wasser Weg’, and instead cross a small bridge and hike in a southeasterly direction for about 15 minutes uphill to a plateau at the start of the glacier. The trail then descends along the moraine to Blaue Lacke lake (walking time from Dresdner Hut: approx. 3 ½ hours). From Blaue Lacke lake, you descend to Sulzenau Hut in about 10 minutes. Go from Sulzenau Hut for the hiking trail via the Sulzenaulm down into the valley to the ‘Sulzenauhütte’ bus stop or via the ‘WildeWasserWeg’ to the ‘Grawa Alm’ bus stop.