Lake Freiger lies just off the beaten track, at an altitude of 2,497 metres above sea level. To the south, the remnants of the “Grübl” glacier stretch into the distance. To the south-west, its namesake, the “Wilde Freiger”, rises majestically to 3,419 metres above sea level. This visually striking mountain is part of the “Seven Summits” Stubai family, and can be scaled from several sides. Covering an area of just 23,450 m², Lake Freiger is just half the size of Lake Grünau, situated below it. Living conditions are extremely tough in high-altitude bodies of water such as these. The sheet of ice only disperses late in the year, and returns long before winter comes to the valley. Its fascinating green-blue tinge, an attribute often seen in high-altitude lakes, is due in part to its extremely low nutrient content. As you can imagine, the scope of life at this height is limited. It is mostly dominated by algae and tiny lifeforms such as miniature crabs. For scientists, lakes found at such formidable heights are considered to be sensitive indicators of factors such as atmospheric pollutants, as well as both prehistoric and current climate events.
The tour to Freiger See lake starts at the Nürnberger Hut car park. From there, follow the ‘Nürnberger Hütte’/‘Bsuchalm’ sign and hike up through the forest to the start of the Langental valley. You reach the Bsuchalm after about 45 minutes. The route then takes you on winding paths up to the Nürnberger Hut (total walking time: 3 hours). From the hut, initially you follow the Stubai High Trail in the direction of the Bremer Hut, but then leave the turnoff to the Bremer Hut on the left and briefly follow the trail in the direction of ‘Wilder Freiger’ until the ‘F.See-Roter Grat’ arrow sign indicates the next turnoff. The trail leads southwards up to a plateau, at the end of which Freiger See lake, which is relatively hidden, is nestled. Walking time from Nürnberger Hut: approx. 45 minutes. The same route leads back to the starting point.