Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

Tom Ravenscroft | 25 July 2019

On has created a reflective mountain cabin almost 2,500 metres up in the Swiss Alps on the Piz Lunghin, to mark the launch of its latest collection including its first hiking shoe.

The On Mountain Hut, which sleeps two, was created by the footwear brand to showcase the valley where co-founders, Olivier Bernhard, Caspar Coppetti and David Allemann, conceived of On.

Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

"On was born in the Swiss Alps. In fact, On's three founders formed the beginnings of their first business plans while hiking in the Engadin valley," said the hut's designer and On art director Thilo Alex Brunner.

On built the cabin to mark the launch of Cloudrock Waterproof, its first hiking shoe.

"This year, with the launch of our first-ever hiking boot, we decided to go back to the source," Brunner told Dezeen.

"The On Mountain Hut was built as a tribute to the remarkable landscape and to share the source of our inspiration with the world. Combining our love of mountains with our love of design, it fuses tradition with innovation."

The minimal mountain cabin can only be accessed by foot. It is envisioned as a peaceful getaway, where hikers and walkers can enjoy the Alps.

"Created from scratch with an entirely minimalist ethos, it features all the facilities you need and nothing you don't,"  said Brunner.

"We want this hut to be the perfect place to enjoy the Alps in all their glory; to switch off and reset away from the hustle and bustle of daily life; to go back to your source."

Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

The two-storey mountain cabin has been clad in reflective corrugated material so that it has a minimal visual impact on its alpine location.

It has been designed to be as sustainable as possible and leave zero impact on the mountain when it is deconstructed later this year.

Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

"We meticulously selected materials that were 100 per cent sustainable, that would keep with the alpine setting and make the mountain hut zero-waste," explained Brunner.

"The hut is also powered by energy from solar panels and uses natural rainwater. This was achieved by installing a unique roof fixture that could collect and filter rainwater for use, along with water collected and filtered from mountain streams."

Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

The hut stands alongside an alpine lake, and is designed to take advantage of the views across the lake and the Engadin valley.

The living space, and the bedroom above, are both fronted with large windows that give visitors views across the vista.

Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

Inside, the simple hut is finished almost entirely with plywood, with the material used to create the walls, floors and ceiling, along with a selection of simple tables.

The main living space is complete with a wood burning stove.

Zero-Impact Mountain Hut

On is a Swiss running company that is based in Zurich.

The company's latest launch includes the Cloudrock Waterproof, which is designed to be 35 per cent lighter than comparable hiking footwear, as well as the Cloudventure Peak shoe and the Waterproof Anorak.

Mountain huts are often built to take advantage of remote or inaccessible locations. Dezeen recently rounded up 10 of the most interesting mountain cabins, including a hideaway on an old ski slope and an aluminium-clad cabin cantilevered over the edge of a mountain on the Slovenian-Italian border.

Photography is by On / Anne Lutz and Thomas Stöckli.