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Grindelwald TR: Not My Kind of Seeing (12/20)

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to ski in the Swiss Alps so, naturally, this:

 

 

Was at a conference in Milan and have a friend who lives in Bern who had invited me up to his place for a couple days. Bern was great, his place was great, the food was great, people generally great, just that the skiing was:

 

 

Unfortunately only had two days to choose from for skiing and this was for all appearances the better of the two. Riding a train to go skiing was interesting, and I liked that there were people with skis waiting at every station through which we passed (and that all Swiss trains seem to have ski storage facilities at every door). All the fellow skiers seemed content to ski  the groomers, although this may have reasonably been a function of (a) poor coverage in the non-groomed areas and (b) high likelihood of getting lost in the ubiquitous miasma.

 

The urinals had soccer goals in them that I thought were cool:

 

 

Otherwise, though, it was mostly foggy. We skied the first half of the day on the Kleine Scheidegg side, then took the train down the hill, walked 15 minutes to the gondola, and went up to the First side. It wasn't better, but it WAS slightly different. All the Talabfahrts were gesperrt, which seemed unfortunate given that there would have been some trees there to break up the flat light. Each lift seemed to have only one skiable run. The goulash soup in the one hut was pretty decent. Rental skis picked up in Bern were not well tuned. Had never been on chairlifts with the bubble screens before; they were cool, if maybe unnecessary on the given day (wind was no problem). It was good to see that Swiss snowboarders also like to make unpredictable stops and turns, made me feel more okay about being an American. Swiss German is unintelligible to me (I'm reasonably fluent in German German). 

 

Here are more photos, because otherwise it seems like too bleak of a TR:

 

 

 

 

On second thought, not sure those photos helped.

 

So, next time -- yeah. I'm not sure a day like this gives any reasonable indications for how to approach skiing in the Alps next time. Next time try not to go when the mountains are beset with inescapable fogs.

 

o

post #2 of 4
Quote:
 So, next time -- yeah. I'm not sure a day like this gives any reasonable indications for how to approach skiing in the Alps next time.

I bet the key is to plan a longer trip so you aren't locked into a single day. I've been in that area a couple times during hiking season and the weather is so changeable--I've been in T shirt and shorts one day and rain pants and base layers the next.

post #3 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Christy319 View Post
 
Quote:
 So, next time -- yeah. I'm not sure a day like this gives any reasonable indications for how to approach skiing in the Alps next time.

I bet the key is to plan a longer trip so you aren't locked into a single day.

 

Not saying this is bad advice, but it struck me as funny.

 

Quite a few years ago I stayed in Bern for three weeks hoping to have the European ski vacation of my life.  It was such a warm season I had to go far and wide to find decent (or not so decent) snow.  Got three days in Italy and two days in Austria and I may very well go to my grave having never skied in Switzerland.

post #4 of 4
Unfortunately, been there in a different way. I was in Montana last year xc skiing in Yellowstone. Drove to Big Sky for two days of downhill. Each day started out at -15* and never got above 0. It was like war out there; I'd ski one run and go in to warm up.
It's a bummer when you're in the dream destination...but not at the right time.
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