Sils Maria to Pontresina via Fuorcla Sirlej

We took the bus from Pontresina to Sils Maria on a perfectly clear and cloudless morning with temperatures in the mid 20s. We planned to complete a “pass walk” back to Pontresina; the actually walking time was 6h 30min but with many breaks for water/food/drinks and cakes at restaurants/photo stops we managed to increase this to 8h 15min.  

Looking back over Sils Maria and the Lel de Segl

  Leaving Sils Maria (1806m) we ignored the various cable cars and climbed through woods to Presura (1950m). Through the trees we could see the lakes in the valley: Lel de Segl and Lel de Silvaplaina – note most names in this area are in Romansch. 

The path towards Murtel

Leaving the trees the path climbs steadily along the side of the Corvatsch (3451m). We left the path to the pass and climbed up to the station of the Murtel to Corvatsch cable car. Then we crossed the valley head on the track leading to the restaurant at the pass; the Fourcla Sirlej (2755m).  

The path contours below the Corvatsch glacier just before the Fuorcla Sirlej pass

  The view from here was absolutely stunning with the Piz Marteratsch (3761m), Piz Bernina (4049m) and Piz Roseg (3937m) together with their glaciers. There were crowds of walkers, although most probably came up by cable car and walked just the last section to the pass.

  The restaurant at the Fuorcla Sirlej

  To continue down into the Val Roseg the path first crosses over sloping rock slabs and then turns northeast down the slopes of Munt Atlas (3127m). In places the path was quite rough but the gradient was quite gentle. It falls in a series of zigzags down to the Hotel Roseggletscher at 1999m. 

The glaciers above the Roseg valley

The views of the Roseg, Sella and Tschierva glaciers become more spectacular as the path drops into the valley until finally a lake at the end of the Roseg glacier comes into view, complete with ice flows. After a drink at the hotel we headed off down to Pontresina (Puntraschigna on the signposts).