In Jenins, you take the road up to the right at the Traube inn. The small road leads past the sawmill and terraced meadows, towards the mountain through Bofel. In the shade of the trees, we climb up to the bridge across the dividing mudflow. In 1991, Jenins barely avoided catastrophe when the mudflow threatened valuable cultural land, which is why the relatively new bridges and creek barriers were built. After Weidezaun in Piols, we first follow the road left, but turn right up at the edge of the forest. Before the last sharp turn in our ascent, we can see the uppermost part of the Hochfall waterfall on the right, and soon we reach the highest point in our hike. On Stoffisegg and also on our subsequent descent, we can savour the view of Fläscher mountain, Gonzen and Alvier behind it, the Rhine and Seez valley, the Pizol region, the Graue Hörner and the Haldensteiner Calanda. We make our way down to the new infrastructural road, cross over and head west to Viehtreiten through the fields to the Alpine cabin on Ochsenberg, once a Walser settlement belonging to the municipality of Berg. Johanna Spyri envisioned the cabin that previously existed here as the home of Alm-Grandfather.
We hike along the road through the forest, downwards to a fork in the path (Pt. 945), where we take the right path through Lufawald forest. The glade on the left with the new agricultural settlement was the site of Peter's cabin in Johanna Spyri's tale. In the forested incline that follows, legally protected cyclamens accompany us to the edge of the wood. At the shooting range, we cross the wood storage area and hike through the field on the right, down to the road. We marvel at the mighty oaks und beeches in the wood. At the tar path, we head towards Maienfeld, but at the fork leading to the Heidihof Hotel after the Intercantonal Forester School in Bovel, we take the meadow trail straight to Ober-Rofels. Here you'll find “Heidi's home” (tour), a village shop and the “Town Hall of the Free Walsers”. Then we continue on to Unter-Rofels. We head about 300 metres down the road and turn left onto a meadow path which leads us past homes, orchards und vineyards to Krusegg. Here, we simply cross the road; a footpath, and the road again for the last stretch, arriving at Maienfeld train station.
Inns en route: Maienfeld: Hotel Heidihof in Bovel Tel. +41 (0)81 300 47 47, Restaurant Rofels Tel. +41 (0)81 302 18 97.
Updated: February 21, 2014
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The name of this vintners' village first appears in documents in 1178. In 1890, a stone axe from the Neolithic period was found about 300 metres above the ruin of Neu-Aspermont. Mention of the current reformed church, which was dedicated to St. Mauritius, first appears in registers of the Benedictine abbey of Pfäfer in 1209. With the exception of the belfry, the tower dates back to Roman times. Much of the church was destroyed in the village fire on 28 March 1745. It was rebuilt to include the octagonal top section of the tower with its onion-shaped cupola.
The gravestones on the outer wall of the church bear the crests of the houses of Guler von Wyneck, Sprecher von Bernegg, Salis-Schauenstein, Perini and Schucan. Secular buildings of note include: the upper Sprecher house, dating from the second half of the 17th century, with a Steckborn dome oven, the lower Sprecher house from the end of the 17th century, and the house of the leader of Salis, built in 1745 after the village fire.
Also of note is the ruin of Neu-Aspermont Castle, with its seven-storey tower, large two-section palace and curtain wall. It was the centre of the Aspermont domain, which included the villages of Jenins and Malans.