Interesting facts 

The Aletsch Forest

The Aletsch forest is one of the most beautiful mountain forests in Europe. The Swiss stone pine is the main stock of the trees: with its extraordinary resistance, its slow and steady growth, it defies summer drought, winter storms, ice and snow.

 

The Aletsch forest began to develop after the retreat of the Great Aletsch glacier at the end of the ice age 11'700 years ago. The colonisation by the plants proceeded similarly to today in the glacier forefield: first grew grasses and herbs, shortly after followed birches and pastures. About 8500 years ago the larch and 8000 years ago the Swiss stone pine established. Today, the stone pine is the dominant tree species in the Aletsch forest with 63%, followed by the larch with 27%. Studies have shown that the oldest stone pines and larches are between 500 and 600 years old. Millennial trees have not yet been found.

The Aletsch forest is a so-called final forest (climax forest), which hardly changes significantly without human influence.

In 1933, the Aletsch forest has been protected and thus preserved from its destruction due to overuse by woodcutting, grazing, hunting and collecting mushrooms and berries.

Help us to preserve this magnificent protection area and move only on the paths foreseen for hiking.