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Hiking route recommended route Stage 2

From hut to hut in the National park Gesäuse Stage 02 Mödlingerhütte - Heßhütte

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  • Ersten Meter von Mödlingerhütte nach Johnsbach
    Ersten Meter von Mödlingerhütte nach Johnsbach
    Photo: Tourismusverband Gesäuse, TV Gesäuse
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Mödlingerhütte - Heßhütte

Oases in the middle of steep walls: Via the famous mountaineering village Johnsbach into the "heart of the Gseis", the Hesshütte at the foot of the highest peak, the Hochtor.

Distance 13.2 km
5:05 h
950 m
770 m
1,704 m
754 m
Of course there is always an easier way on every mountain. With more than 500 km of hiking trails and one of the highest densities of mountain huts in the Eastern Alps, nothing stands in the way of a hiking experience lasting several days in the only Styrian National Park. The whole Gesäuse in one go is best experienced on the Gesäuse Hut Tour. From hut to hut and even completely flexible (no fixed places to stay overnight, numerous variations and completely mobile without your own car), the alpine Gesäuse is more beautiful than ever to hike.

Author’s recommendation

It is recommended to contact the Trail Info & Booking Centre before booking.

Offers at:

Profile picture of Tourismusverband Gesäuse
Tourismusverband Gesäuse
Update: May 29, 2020
Highest point
1,704 m
Lowest point
754 m
Best time of year

Track types

Show elevation profile

Rest stops

Heßhütte, 1.699 m
Mödlinger Hütte, 1.523 m
Gasthof Kölblwirt

Safety information

Mountain rescue emergency call: 140

From a technical point of view, the Gesäuse hut circuit has moderate difficulties, which are no problem for the sure-footed and experienced mountain hiker. All the stages run on mountain paths with red dots, which means that they are classified as moderately difficult hiking trails according to the classification of the Austrian Alpine Club. However, you should have a certain amount of mountain experience for the Gesäuse Hüttenrunde, as you will be hiking in mountains with altitudes up to 1,850 m.

Tips and hints


Mödlingerhütte (1,512 m)
47.528654, 14.553160
47°31'43.2"N 14°33'11.4"E
33T 466365 5264011
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Turn-by-turn directions

From the Mödlingerhütte you go eastwards down the hiking path to the mountain climbers' village of Johnsbach: the hiking path crosses the forest road several times, runs a small stretch along it until it branches off again to the left, becoming steeper and steeper.Arrived in the valley you reach the Gasthaus Donner opposite the tragically famous Johnsbacher Bergsteigerfriedhof. This cemetery is 5 walking minutes away from the parking lot at the Gasthof zum Donner and is definitely worth a visit. 200 years ago, the first victim of an accident in the Gesaeuse Mountains was buried here. Numerous historical gravestones tell the tragic story of many young mountaineers who died in an accident in the Gesaeuse Mountains. This cemetery, Austria's largest mountaineers' cemetery, has achieved sad fame and radiates peaceful tranquillity in an idyllic landscape.Continue past Gasthof Donner, 500m along the asphalted road until you turn right at the sharp ascending left turn and hike along the shadow side path along the Johnsbach stream to Kölblwirt. The hiking trail to the Hesshütte (1.699m) starts 50m after the Kölblwirt. Here you first pass the waterfall on the left in the meadow. In the forest you then go up the so-called "Zach´n Schuach", a steep gravel path. After about 20 minutes the trail flattens out and changes character into a leisurely hike through woods, alpine pastures and larch woods. At Gamsbrunn (turn-off to Sulzkarhund) past the Hesshütte (1.699m) and thus the day's destination is soon in sight - it is located under the rock faces of the Hochtorgruppe


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Getting there

With your own car:

A9 Phyrn motorway to exit Ardning/Admont and from there past Frauenberg, approx. 10 km after Admont.

By train: The following train stations are at your disposal: Liezen train station (continue with bus 910 to Admont), Weißenbach - St. Gallen train station (from here take bus 912 to Admont).

By plane: The following international airports can be recommended for arrival by plane - Vienna, Linz and Graz. Arrival Shuttle Service Brings you to the starting point of your trail journey and back to the ideal train station or airport at the end of the tour.

The Trail Info & Booking Centre will be happy to organise this shuttle service.


Parking is available at the respective starting points of the trail tour (Attention: parking possibilities are very limited in Johnsbach). Most of the parking spaces are free of charge and not supervised! The return transport will bring you back to your car.

Tip: Please place a note in your car with a note that you are on the Gesäuse Hut Trail (including the date of your return and telephone number) - the mountain rescue service will thank you!


47.528654, 14.553160
47°31'43.2"N 14°33'11.4"E
33T 466365 5264011
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Author’s map recommendations / Wander-, Rad- & Schitourenkarte „Nationalpark Gesäuse“                                     

 Gesäuseberge – Haller Mauern – Eisenerzer Alpen West, Nr. 801

M 1: 35.000

Kompass/ Wander-, Fahrrad- & Schitourenkarte „Nationalpark Gesäuse“, Nr. 206

M 1 : 25.000

Alpenvereinskarte „Gesäuse und Ennstaler Alpen“, Blatt 16, M 1 : 25.000


For the Gesäuse hut tour, "normal" equipment for alpine hikes on unpaved paths is completely sufficient. In any case, we recommend sturdy shoes and telescopic walking sticks to take the strain off the knees on the sometimes longer descents. For all refuges along the trail you should also bring a sleeping bag and a towel.  Since the huts where you will be staying overnight on your trail trip are very remote and high up in the mountains and cannot be reached by the luggage shuttle, we cannot offer any luggage transport for the Gesäuse Hut Tour. We therefore recommend that you pack your rucksack sparingly and only take what is really necessary with you to the Gesäuse Hüttenrunde. It can be quite liberating to be on the way without luxury!

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13.2 km
5:05 h
950 m
770 m
Highest point
1,704 m
Lowest point
754 m
Multi-stage route Scenic Refreshment stops available Family-friendly


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