Mountain ranges in Switzerland
Switzerland, as small as it is, has a few distinctly different mountain regions. You have Graubünden on the eastern side, with Lenzerheide, Davos and the Engadin as its most famous spots for mountain biking. Then you have the Tessin in the south with Monte Tamaro as the standout spot for mountain biking and many more mostly sketchy descents. And in the southwest, you find the Valais with Zermatt, Verbier and Crans-Montana that get often the attention of the magazines and journalists alike.
But there is more. With central Switzerland and the Bernese mountains, there are regions with lots of potential but not the masses of mountain bikers like for example in Lenzerheide. This has many reasons, one might be that you find not so many – accessible or rideable – trails another might be that the tourism boards may just have other priorities.
We love the Valais, Graubünden and all the spots in between. But we also think that other regions in Switzerland should get some more attention too. This short article should show the beauty of the region.Discovering the trails in Grindelwald
So when Frazer, a Kiwi friend that lives in Grindelwald asked me if I wanted to join a group ride with the goal to ride a 3X1 – as in 3 amazing descents with at least 1000m of denivelation – I immediately agreed. Obviously, I brought the camera, Eiger North Face and late autumn make a great combination.
It all started early and since the first uphill needs to be done by yourself (the train to Kleine Scheidegg only allows bikers to enter after 4pm). To my delight the timing was quite perfect and just when we reached the highest point of this mornings climb the sun showed up above the famous Eiger North face.
In a slight hurry to catch that light a the right spots we made our way down, the group enjoying the warm feeling of the first sun rays.
The descent soon lead us into the forest where everything was still a bit wet and sometimes even frozen from the night. Also, the sun was not yet here so we did not stop often for pictures and enjoyed the loamy trails until we reached Grindelwald again. So first out of three descents already delivered bigtime.One uphill by gondola and one by train ride
Fortunately for us, the next climb up to First was possible with Gondolas and it took no time to end up at Bachsee, the start of the second downhill. In contrary to the first descent, the second one was not right next to the famous Eiger Northface, but just on the opposite site of the valley. This made it a whole lot easier to get it in front of the camera.
Again we reached soon the woods, only this time with a lot of light in them. Lucky me I brought the camera.
Last but not least, for the third and last uphill of the day, and also the second time to Kleine Scheidegg, we were allowed to take the train. Definitely my preferred way to get up to Kleine Scheidegg from Grindelwald.
The autumn days are getting shorter and so was the time until it got dark. So I took another few shots above the treeline before we started to speed up the long downhill so that don’t end up riding in the dark. Even though the last trail is nothing short of amazing, I don’t have any actual footage of it yet. I guess I have to come back in 2018.
Here we go. I hope you liked the shots. It is definitely a beautiful region with a handful of amazing trails. Grindelwald might not be the destination to spend a week with your bike, but for sure a weekend. The trails are amazing, the views breathtaking and most of the time you even find a way to catch an uplift.
Words: Armin "Ben" Wurmser