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Hausstock und Ruchi.jpg
The north-west face of the Hausstock
Highest point
Elevation 3,158 m (10,361 ft)
Prominence 655 m (2,149 ft) [1]
Isolation 9.8 km (6.1 mi) [2]
Parent peak Tödi
Coordinates 46°52′32″N 9°4′0″E / 46.87556°N 9.06667°E / 46.87556; 9.06667Coordinates: 46°52′32″N 9°4′0″E / 46.87556°N 9.06667°E / 46.87556; 9.06667
Hausstock is located in Switzerland
Location in Switzerland
Location Glarus/Graubünden, Switzerland
Parent range Glarus Alps
First ascent 1832
Easiest route South ridge

The Hausstock is a mountain in the Glarus Alps, at an elevation of 3,158 m (10,361 ft) on the border between the cantons of Glarus and Graubünden. It overlooks the valleys of Linth and Sernf rivers in Glarus, and the valley of the Vorderrhein river in Graubünden. The Hausstock was the site of the 1799 withdrawal of the Russian army under General Alexander Suvorov. A well-known destination already in the nineteenth century with British and American climbers, the mountain remains popular with mountain climbers and skiers.

Geography and geology[edit]

The Hausstock overlooks the valleys of Linth and Sernf rivers in Glarus, and valley of the Vorderrhein river in Graubünden. The nearest settlements are the villages of Linthal (in the Linth valley), Elm (in the Sernf valley) and Pigniu (on the slopes of the Vorderrhein valley). Administratively, the mountain lies in the municipalities of Glarus Süd, Ilanz/Glion and Andiast.[3]

The Richetli Pass to the north of the mountain connects the villages of Elm and Linthal, reaching an elevation of 2,261 m (7,418 ft) and separating the Hausstock from the Kärpf mountain. The Panix Pass to the south-east connects the villages of Elm and Pigniu, reaching an elevation of 2,404 m (7,887 ft). Both passes carry only rough hiking trails, although the Richetli Pass forms part of the Alpine Pass Route, a long-distance hiking trail across Switzerland between Sargans and Montreux.[3][4]

The Hausstock is connected to the summit of the Ruchi to the south-west by a 2 km (1.2 mi) long ridge.[3]

Like the rest of the nummulite formation of the high Glarus Alps, the Hausstock contains fine-grained black sandstone.[5] The mountain is part of the Glarus thrust, a major thrust fault; the top layer consists of Verrucano formations, 250-300 Ma old, on top of chalk, 100-150 Ma, and flysch, 35-50 Ma.[6] In 2008, the thrust was declared a geotope, a geologic UNESCO world heritage site, under the name Swiss Tectonic Arena Sardona.[7][8] The Glarus thrust can clearly be seen on the mountain at approximately 2,950 metres (9,678 ft).[9][10][11]


In October 1799, Russian General Alexander Suvorov made a strategic retreat from the French Revolutionary forces in Italy over the Panix Pass. The event is frequently mentioned in British mountain guides from the nineteenth century, adding interest to the mountain, and still attracts tourists to the area.[12] A plaque in Paxis commemorates the event.[13] Today, there is still a military presence: the Swiss army maintains a firing range for tanks; the army "even uses mine throwers to target the glacier on the upper flanks of the 3,000-metre high Hausstock Mountain."[14]

According to the American mountaineer W. A. B. Coolidge, the first ascent of the mountain was made in 1832.[15] The trek through the pass, under the shadow of the mountain, is described extensively in the works of the famous Irish naturalist and alpinist John Ball,[16] who mentioned the Hausstock in many of his works.[17] The Hausstock is one stage in what William Martin Conway, president of the Alpine Club from 1902 to 1904, called the "North Tour through the Alps," a route popular in the nineteenth century with British and American travelers; the mountain was often reached via a long ridge that connects it to neighboring Ruchi,[18] at 3,107 metres (10,194 ft).[19] The Hausstock is the highest of the mountains around the village of Elm, from which it is usually ascended;[20] it continues to be a popular mountain to climb,[21] and there is a mountain hut, the Panixerpasshütte, in the Panix pass.[22]

Today, the Hausstock is a popular wintersports resort, accessible via the village of Elm with a ski lift system installed in the early 2000s.[14] The "Hausstock" ski tour[23] is said to be "incredible.... Long and varied with a rewarding view from the summit."[21]


  1. ^ Retrieved from the Swisstopo topographic maps. The key col is the Kistenpass at 2,503 metres.
  2. ^ Retrieved from Google Earth. The nearest point of higher elevation is east of the Bifertenstock.
  3. ^ a b c (Map). Swiss Confederation. Retrieved 2015-06-09. 
  4. ^ Reynolds, Kev (2011). "Trek 10 - Alpine Pass Route". Trekking in the Alps. Cicerone. pp. 124–135. ISBN 978 1 85284 600 8. 
  5. ^ Keller, Ferdinand (1866). J.E. Lee, ed. The lake dwellings of Switzerland and other parts of Europe. Translated by Lee. London: Longman, Greens. p. 18. 
  6. ^ "Nomination der Glarner Hauptüberschiebung zum UNESCO Weltnaturerbe" (PDF). Impergeologie AG. Retrieved 2009-03-23.  p. 11.
  7. ^ "Swiss Tectonic Arena Sardona". UNESCO. 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  8. ^ See also "The Glarus overthrust--a singular tectonic phenomenon". GeoPark Sarganserland-Walensee-Glarnerland. 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  9. ^ "Route E1: Sardonahütte SAC – Alp Foo". Glarner Wanderwege. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  10. ^ Städeli, Hans (June 2008). "Zwei-Tageswanderung mit dem Bergklub (40 Jahre Jubiläum)" (PDF). Bergklub Sankt Gallen. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-03-26. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  11. ^ "Geology of the Glarus overthrust". GeoPark Sarganserland-Walensee-Glarnerland. 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  12. ^ Lieberman, Marcia R. (1991-03-17). "Where Cossacks Crossed the Alps". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  13. ^ "Suvorov". SummitPost. 2006. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  14. ^ a b Bechtel, Dale (2002-09-26). "Visiting Elm". Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  15. ^ Coolidge, William Augustus Brevoort (1908). The Alps in Nature and History. E.P. Dutton and company. p. 398. 
  16. ^ Ball, John (1864). The Alpine guide. London: Longman, Roberts, & Green. pp. 220–221.  The route is reprinted in Ball, John (1873). The Central Alps, including the Bernese Oberland, and all Switzerland excepting the neighbourhood of Monte Rosa and the Great St. Bernard: with Lombardy, and the adjoining portion of Tyrol. Being the second part of the Alpine guide. London: Longmans, Green, and co. 
  17. ^ As early as 1860 in Ball, John (1860). Peaks, Passes, and Glaciers: A Series of Excursions by Members of the Alpine Club. Longman, Green, Longman, & Roberts. pp. 268–69. 
  18. ^ Heim, Beat. "Between trips: 2007, Hausstock - Ruchi traverse". Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  19. ^ Conway, William Martin; William Augustus Brevoort Coolidge (1900). The Alps from end to end. A. Constable. pp. 164–69.  Originally published in 1895.
  20. ^ Ball, John (1907). The Central Alps. Longmans, Green, and co. pp. 258–59. 
  21. ^ a b "Hausstock 3158m". Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  22. ^ "Panixerpasshütte". VCS Hospa Soft. 
  23. ^ "Ski-Tour Hausstock (3158 m.ü.M.)". Topin Travel. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 

External links[edit]