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Swiss Ski Resorts

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Anybody skied the following Swiss Ski resorts :-

Chateu d'ox
St Moritz (How does this compare to St Anton)

If so, what was it like ?


post #2 of 13
I know a guy that's skiied Wengen. He's trying to talk me into sking St Moritz at Easter, if his girlfriend will allow. I'll speak to him at the weekend, and update you.

post #3 of 13
DB. I've skied a few of them:
Engelberg. Recommended for a 3-day stay. Not a huge ski area, but very interesting. World's only rotating cablecar up to the Titlis glacier. Fantastic off-piste run called the Wang (1000m vertical in one shot). Lots of intriguing terrain if you like that sort of thing. Interesting village with large ancient monastery. Lovely train ride up to the resort from Lake Lucern.

A must. Fantastic scenery. Take the train through the Eiger up to the Jungfrau. Ski the Eigergetscher run - not that long but superbly scenic. Go to Wengen rather than Grindelwald. It's charming. I believe Murren has even more charm, but you can take a great day trip there from Wengen (no ski connection - you take the train to Lauterbrunnen and up to Murren).
Lots of intermediate runs in Wengen, not much steep. Full of old farts who belong to the 'Downhill Only Ski Club' - watch them read the Daily Telegraph up the cog railway as if they were heading into Waterloo from Surbiton. Half of them are completely bonkers.
Chateu d'ox
Haven't skied it. I can't spell it either.
St Moritz (How does this compare to St Anton)
Strangely enough, I skied St Moritz because there was no snow in St Anton. Not the case this year! St Moritz is unique, very ritzy in parts, but also very beautiful. Slightly disjointed ski area, as I recall, but plenty of good skiing in the diff. sectors. I don't think it's comparable to St Anton in any way - St Anton's appeal is its compact intensity. St Moritz is a sizeable town.
Haven't skied those two.
You didn't mention Flims/Laax. Magnificent ski area. Huge vertical. Highly recommended, but not after Feb/early March (too sunny for its own good, snow-wise).
And the off-piste paradise I've always wanted to visit - Andermatt. The Gemstock is supposed to be one of the great hills.
post #4 of 13

well, I ski a lot in Switzerland since I basically live there. Here is some advice:

Do not go to Engelberg unless you are really rich... It's a rip off. True, they have some nice challenging backcountry runs but they are among the most expensive ski resorts in Switzerland. Plus, Engelberg can get very very crowded - especially on the weekends since Luzern, Zürich, Basel and Bern are not very far away. I usually avoid Engelberg unless I'm out touring on skins, etc.

St. Moritz is very chique. They are having a very bad winter though (most of Europe in general, but especially Graubünden, Wallis and the southern Alps). You can ski down to the village in St. Moritz at the present - but only on artifical snow. The terrain is great around St. Moritz if you can afford going heli skiing or touring. Otherwise I think it isn't any better or worse than any other resort - just different marketing - so St. Moritz is also quite expensive (compared to the prices in the US it's probably still quite reasonable).

Meiringen Hasliberg is a small ski resort with lots of T-bars and a few chairs. It's more suitable for families with little children. For easy skiing it's OK, but if you're looking for challenging terrain don't go for it.

Grindelwald is definately great for the scenery. The ski area on the Scheidegg is OK, but lots of tourists (Japanese, Americans, etc...). As already recommended the best skiing in that area is from Mürren. You ski on the Schilthorn (that's by the way the scene where they shot a James Bond movie). The Schilthorn is great. It only has a few lifts but a big big vertical. So you get lots of skiing for the amount of using the cablecar. Make sure though before you go to check whether they are open down into the valley.

Villars and Chateau d'Oeux I haven't skied yet. Les Diablerets is on the other side of Chateau d'Oex. That's quite OK. So I think Chateau d'Oeux should work out well, too. I haven't skied it though.

Absolute insider tips are the ski areas in central Switzerland. They usually get the most snow. Andermatt of course is killer. I ski there a lot. It has 2 cable cars up the Gemsstock. You leave Andermatt at 1400m (4200ft) and exit on top of the Gemsstock at 3000m (9000ft). That gives you a vertical of 1600m (4800ft). Andermatt is very steep and allows great backcounty skiing which is easily accessible from the cable car. They also have a few lifts but usually we only use the gondola. Andermatt is definately worthwile going.

Then there is also Hoch Ybrig. Ybrig is quite small and doesn't have the really challenging terrain. It's more like Meiringen but on fresh powder days it's fun since you have quite a few possibilities for "small" backcounty skiing.

Then you should still consider the Wallis. Especially Verbier, Champéry and Saas Fee. Verbier is a little more on the expensive side but it has absolute killer terrain and it's HUGE. You can do anything there from easy cruising runs up to extreme skiing (Mont Gelé). Unfortunately they are having very little snow at the moment. Champéry (Portes du Soleil) is also very cool if there is enough snow. You can easily access nice couloirs and steep backcountry. Besides it has the largest groomed slope network in Europe (or the world?) with over 650km. This doesn't mean though that you won't find any backcountry. But they too are having very little snow. Saas Fee is very big. It goes from 1800m (5400ft) up to 3600m (11000ft). This gives you a vertical of 5600ft. It's not as good though for tough backcounty skiing. There are some options but it is a little limited (due to the huge glacier with all the crevasses).

Hope I could help you. If you have any questions - email me!

And yeah, St. Anton is always a good bet. They are having pretty good snow right now compared with other ski resorts!

Have fun--
post #5 of 13
for us poor Italians St. Moritz is expensive
no matter what.
It lies within range from my home for a day trip (a couple of hours) but I haven't been
there in years.
Maybe now that the Euro has arrived...
post #6 of 13
Hi M@tteo,

for us poor students St. Moritz is also very very expensive. So I have only skied there once. Portes de Soleil offers good pricing if you stay over a longer period of time (8 days or more).

Greets & safe skiing!
post #7 of 13
Hi Global
Nice Pic in your profile!
post #8 of 13
I go from Surbiton to Waterloo every weekday. It is more irritating, more unpleasant, and less punctual than the cog railway near Grindelwald (which admittedly I've only done twice).

p.s. if you aren't after black runs, Crans Montana is great for miles of red piste bashing and is only 30mins from Sion airport. But most epic skiers look down on that sort of holiday.
post #9 of 13
Anyone going to Sankt Moritz, then?
post #10 of 13
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Frances:
p.s. if you aren't after black runs, Crans Montana is great for miles of red piste bashing and is only 30mins from Sion airport. But most epic skiers look down on that sort of holiday.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Frances, don't be like that!
Many of the Bears are based in US/Canada, and only ski there, so they will never have skiied a red run in their lives! The nearest equivalent in North American terms is a blue/black, but many European reds are similar to their blacks.
I'd be happy to do most of my skiing on reds - I'm not one of these guys who thinks they are less of a man if they don't spend the day on blacks!
Crans is a good place - well worth the trip!

post #11 of 13
Most Epicskiers will ski anything and love it.
post #12 of 13
Just returned from St. Anton. They have pretty good coverage up high. There are some rocks/pebbles on the pistes, but the off-piste is in good shape. Got a bit of snow last Thursday and Sunday which helped things a bit. Bottom is real thin and icy from multiple rains. Don't think it has snowed in the village in quite a while.

Let me know if anyone has other questions.

post #13 of 13
I've skied Villars and Chateau D'Oex. The only time to go to Chateau D'Oex is in mid-Jan (ie, last week) when the international hot air balloon festival's on. Hitch a ride and get a new perspective on those peaks! The ski-ing, however, is very limited. Gstaad next door is better, but I wouldn't bust a gut.

Villars however is a good 'un - lots of fine long trails, both wide open and through trees, though nothing super-challenging, and it's linked to Les Diablerets. The connection between the two offers some really immense scenery, if thatz your thing at all.

Didn't see too much of the resort (night life, &c) as daughter was two at the time so I Didn't Get Out Much.

I'd definitely go back, though.

Wengen is my fave Swiss resort - not so much for the ski-ing as for the awesome backdrop and the whole aura of the place. I like Murren too, though it's no fun when the weather closes in - really claustrophobic. The best ski-ing's definitely off the Schilthorn (Murren).

Saas Fee's also worth a look, while you're at it.

Hope that helps...

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