In Scuol alone there are 112 wells according to the official list. From some of these, water flows from mineral springs. Together with Johannes Studer we were allowed to immerse ourselves for once - not in the water of the wells - but in the history of the well master of Scuol...
Johannes grew up in Basel, which is still very much alive today. As a child he often spent his holidays in the Lower Engadin and has therefore always had a connection to the region. Since he had a family, he dreamed of living in the Engadin. A few years ago this dream came true and Johannes moved into the former house of his grandfather in Sur En near Sent. The trained carpenter completed his training as a well master in 2011 and has been responsible with his team for the water supply of the community of Scuol since 2018.
In and around Scuol there are over 20 mineral water springs. The water from these springs can be tasted at various wells in the village. "You can't see much of the water supply from the outside - you see wells, hydrants and you notice when no more water comes out of the tap". For this very reason special attention is paid to the maintenance of the wells. "The village wells are our business cards, so to speak", Johannes tells us. His favourite mineral water is that of the Sotsass spring, which he regularly bottles - not because of any special effect, but simply because it tastes best to him. He also often gets water from the Lischana spring, which he recommends especially because of its high magnesium content.
Already 100 years ago, guests from all over the world travelled to the health resorts of Scuol, Tarasp and Vulpera because of the abundance of water and there was a flourishing spa and health tourism. In 1369 the mineral springs around Scuol were first mentioned in a document, in 2019 the 650th anniversary of mineral water was celebrated. Bathing in the mineral bath Bogn Engiadina, walking along the river Inn past the historic drinking hall "Büvetta Tarasp" or tasting mineral water at the fountain - the mineral water can be experienced in many ways.
The topic of water supply is a very comprehensive one. The basic system is similar everywhere, but each system has its own peculiarities. "In flatter regions, drinking water is often taken from the groundwater or pumped from the lake. In the case of lake water, the water has to be elaborately treated in several steps to produce drinking water. Here in the mountains we obtain the water from springs whose catchment area is often above settlements. So the water usually does not have to be treated and bubbles untreated and refreshingly cool to drink from the tap. In the municipality of Scuol, the water is only disinfected at individual points using UV light."
Johannes and his team make sure, among other things, that drinking water regulations are observed, complete inspection tours, take drinking water samples, provide advice on the subject of water connections for conversions and new buildings, look after the water supply in the Alps, maintain irrigation systems and are responsible for various maintenance and cleaning work on the many water supply facilities.
Johannes and his team will continue to make every effort to ensure that we can continue to enjoy this valuable asset in a variety of ways.