The Bödmerenwald has been well-known for years. It is the largest continuous area of woodland in the municipality of Muotathal and it is owned mainly by the Oberallmeind Cooperative Schwyz.

  • The so far oldest notice of a large bear hunt in Muotathal is dated from 1735.
  • In 1971 the ETH Zurich sealed a contract with the Oberallmeind Cooperative for the lease of 4.8 ha of Bödmerenwald for research purposes.
  • In 1974 the idea of the “Bödmeren Nature Park” took shape in the tourism strategy of Muotathal.
  • In 1978 the head of the Cantonal Forest Service Walter Kälin contacted the federal government with the request for a second “National Park” within the territory of Bödmerenwald.
  • In 1982 preparations for a “Virgin Forest Reserve Bödmeren” were on the way.
  • On 25 July 1984 the foundation “Forest Reserve Bödmeren” was formed and 70 ha of forest were protected. The donors were: the Swiss National Day Donation, Zurich, represented by Adolf Ehrsam, Küsnacht ZH and Kurt Roderer, Langnau am Albis; the Canton of Schwyz, represented by Walter Gisler, member of the governing council, Immensee, Walter Kälin, retired head of the Cantonal Forest Service, Rickenbach and Viktor Voser, head of the Cantonal Forest Service, Schindellegi; the municipality of Muotathal represented by Georges Schelbert, vice-mayor, Muothatal, the Oberallmeind Cooperative Schwyz, represented by Werner Schnüriger, president, Steinen und Othmar Betschart, recorder, Schwyz and the Schwyzer Kantonalbank, represented by Franz Beeler, director, Schwyz.
  • In 2009 the Oberallmeind Cooperative extended the area of the forest reserve to 550 ha thanks to considerable funding from the Hauser foundation, Weggis.

The foundation

Purpose of the foundation:

  • Fulfillment of the 50 years leasing contract with the Oberallmeind Cooperative Schwyz (signed 25 July 1984)
    1. Conservation of rare forest associations
    2. Repeated forest inventories to allow the research of natural  forest dynamics without human intervention
    3. Conservation of the beautiful forest and landscape scenery.
  • Additionally, the reserve Bödmeren will be used for scientific research by the ETH Zurich and the Swiss Federal Institute of Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL, Birmensdorf, as well as further research institutes.

The foundation council is composed of 10 to 15 members representing:
• Canton of Schwyz: two members
• Oberallmeind Cooperative: two members
• Municipality of Muothathal: one member
• Schwyzer Kantonalbank: one member
• ETH Zurich: one member
• WSL Birmensdorf: one member
Further members can be invited at will by the foundation council.

The foundation is supervised by the Canton of Schwyz. The foundation council is responsible for the upkeep of the foundation purpose and will form long-term strategies to do so. These also include better information of the public. Therefore the following measures have been taken:

  • In 2006 the foundation council decided to issue leaflets about the virgin forest Bödmerenwald. Goal of this measure was to raise awareness for the uniqueness of the Bödmerenwald.
  • In 2008 information panels were erected at Eigeliswald and at the top of Pragelpass
  • In 2009 the brochure “Bödmere üse Wald” (Bödmeren our forest) was published.
  • In 2010 the Oberallmeind Cooperative laid out a new concept containing the following priorities:
    o Enhanced public relation activities
    o Visitor management for the Bödmerenwald
    o Cooperative projects

Currently the foundation council is composed by:

  • Theo Pfyl, president, Gwerd 1, 6436 Ried-Muotathal
  • Theo Weber, head of the office for forest and natural hazards AWN, representative of the canton of Schwyz
  • Markus Gwerder, Treasurer/Vice President, representative of Schwyzer Kantonalbank
  • Kurt Sturzenegger, actuary, forester AWN
  • Maria Christen, mayor, representative of the Muotathal municipality
  • Thomas Hediger, Head of Forestry, Oberallmeindkorporation Schwyz OAK
  • Remo Kryenbühl, Board of Directors and Forest President OAK
  • Prof. Dr. Harald Bugmann, representative ETH Zurich
  • Jonas Stillhard, representative WSL Birmensdorf
  • Beat Fuchs, district forester forest district 2, AWN, representative of the canton of Schwyz
  • dr Felix Lüscher, Scientific Advisory Board,
    former head of the forest OAK


Bank connection: IBAN CH92 0077 7001 4064 6101 5.
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