Elevation: 11,466 ft
GPS: 46.529, 8.13 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 481,069 total · 3,132/month
Shared By: Bill Flaherty on Sep 28, 2008 · Updates
Admins: Dan Flynn, Mark P.

Description

Quite possibly the best country in the world for a climber to visit. Take your pick: granite, limestone, or gneiss - all of it splitter, and most of it bolted. Walls tend to be big, and if you're coming from North America, the vertical relief will take some getting used to. The hut system is great, providing quick access to climbs and hearty fare at a reasonable price.

If you're a fan of granite, check out Salbit (www.salbit.ch). There are many routes in the 500-700 foot range - along with a few marathon routes over 2,000 feet. You supplement the almost-adequate bolts with cams. Rock quality is superb. The hutkeeper, Hans Berger, whips up killer food and has one heck of an alpine resume.

For limestone, Melchsee-Frutt is a gorgeous mountain getaway that serves as a popular ski area in winter. In summer, you can enjoy the most pristine limestone walls I've ever seen. Varying in height, with many sections nearly 1,000 feet tall, they are supremely well-bolted.

For gneiss, there is a mongo slab just below the famous granite area of Grimsel Pass. Get your slab-climbing mojo on, as the bolts are very sparse, and some are rather old.

Of course you can get scared and cold at the same time climbing famous alpine walls like the Eiger North Face, but someone else will need to log on to explain why that's fun.

Beyond the climbing, Switzerland offers a unique opportunity to sample Italian, French, and German language, cuisine, and culture in its various regions. Well worth a visit!

Goals of these pages

There is so much rock in Switzerland. Too much for one website to describe comprehensively! The goal of these pages is to document many of the most worthwhile climbing areas (sport, trad; alpine and single pitch, and a bit of bouldering) and with useful details for some of the best routes. Hopefully this will be useful for visitors in getting oriented.

That said, if you want to add routes for your ticklist, please go ahead!

A note on geographic organization:

Here the areas are listed alphabetically, but other information can be found about areas organized:

- by canton (topodb.ch, rockclimbing.com/routes/Eur… )

- by region and type of climbing (scalamalade-areas.com/en/ )

- by north, east, south, west (the Filidor guidebooks, and chmoser.ch/ )

More reference websites:

Swiss Alpine Club guidebooks - Climbing and alpinism guidebooks by the Swiss Alpine Club. Not all are in English but many are.

UKClimbing - look at logbook for crags (e.g., Salbit climbs )

Gipfelbuch - Great for conditions on alpine routes

Chmoser - Excellent personal logbook of a dedicated climber, with detailed descriptions of some routes (in German)

Scalamalade-areas - Overview of some areas, no detailed route information, but good for getting ideas of where to go

Topodb.ch - List of climbing routes by canton, region, area, sometimes with topos

hikr.org - Some alpine routes / many peaks detailed here, with condition reports

summitpost.org  - Some mountains / crags detailed here

kletterportal.ch - for finding partners

camptocamp.org - Alpine focused site, good for finding climbing near a specific point

Guidebooks

There are a ton of books you could get. For visiting climbers interested in alpine multipitch tours and single pitch sport climbing, the most useful books are the Filidor series, which divides the country into four broad regions (east, west, Jura, and south).

The series is divided into 'Plaisir' and 'Extrem' volumes, with the former covering areas emphasizing up to 6b (5.10b) climbing, and the latter covering areas dominated by the harder climbs. But plaisir areas still include topos for climbs up to 7a (5.11d) and even harder, while extrem areas may still have some 5c climbs in there.

Plaisir West and Plaisir Ost might be the two most useful books to start with. Newer and forthcoming versions have English, otherwise you can more or less figure it out.

The Swiss Alpine Club has its own series of guidebooks, which are massive, detailed, and pricy. These are generally more localized by canton, but great references if you know exactly where you want to go.

And then there are specialized books for areas like Gastlosen in Bern, Valsertal in Grabünden, or the canton of Glarus.

536 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Switzerland

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
V3 6A
 3
Blue Sky of MIne
Boulder
V8 7B
 4
Grit deluxe
Boulder
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c PG13
 29
Hörnligrat Route
Trad, Alpine
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b A0
 11
Mittellegi Ridge 5b
Aid, Alpine
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c
 3
Via Fritz (5b+ / 5c)
Sport, Alpine 7 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 5
NE Grat
Trad, Sport 11 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
 3
Ostegg Hut to Mittellegi Hut (lo…
Trad, Alpine
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a
 9
La Fiamma
Sport, Alpine
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 3
Hermelin 6a
Sport
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 10
Motörhead
Trad 14 pitches
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b
 4
Via Leni 6b
Sport, Alpine 6 pitches
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b
 7
Salbit Westridge
Trad, Alpine 32 pitches
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a
 3
Patent Ochsner
Sport, Alpine 13 pitches
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 3
Die Maenner von Memmental 7a+
Sport 5 pitches
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
 3
Intifada
Trad, Alpine 8 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Blue Sky of MIne Magic Wood > Kamel
 3
V3 6A Boulder
Grit deluxe Magic Wood > Beach
 4
V8 7B Boulder
Hörnligrat Route Zermatt area > Matterhorn
 29
5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c PG13 Trad, Alpine
Mittellegi Ridge 5b Eiger
 11
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b A0 Aid, Alpine
Via Fritz (5b+ / 5c) Steingletscher > Pfriendler
 3
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c Sport, Alpine 7 pitches
NE Grat Zervreilahorn
 5
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad, Sport 11 pitches
Ostegg Hut to Mittellegi Hu… Eiger
 3
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Trad, Alpine
La Fiamma Albigna Valley > Spazzacaldeira
 9
5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a Sport, Alpine
Hermelin 6a Melchtal > Bonistock / Melchsee-…
 3
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Sport
Motörhead Grimsel > Eldorado
 10
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad 14 pitches
Via Leni 6b Albigna Valley > Spazzacaldeira
 4
5.10b 6a+ 19 VII- 19 E2 5b Sport, Alpine 6 pitches
Salbit Westridge Göschenertal > Salbitschijen > Salbitschijen Westridge
 7
5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b Trad, Alpine 32 pitches
Patent Ochsner Wendenstöcke > Pfaffenhut
 3
5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a Sport, Alpine 13 pitches
Die Maenner von Memmental 7a+ Melchtal > Cheselenflue
 3
5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Sport 5 pitches
Intifada Rätikon > Schweizereck
 3
5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a Trad, Alpine 8 pitches
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