Matterhorn Radiates in the Night


The Matterhorn sparkles in the night. 50 lamps along the Hörnligrat illuminate the route of the first ascenders from 1865. The illumination can be seen from Zermatt three times each night – until the end of September 2015.

To honour the efforts of the first ascenders, the mountain guides from Zermatt have mounted solar lamps on the Matterhorn for the jubilee marking 150 years first Ascent of the Matterhorn. The illuminate the route of the first climbers along the Hörnligrat. The route does not correspond to the way Alpinists select today. 49 lamps gradually light up until all illuminate the path. A red lamp lights up to mark the place below the summit where four alpinists fell to their deaths.  

The background: During the first ascent of the Matterhorn on 14 July 1865, all 7 Alpinists reached the summit: Peter Taugwalder Vater and Peter Taugwalder Sohn, the Englishman Edward Whymper, the mountain guide Michel Auguste Groz from Chamonix, the Reverend Charles Hudson, Lord Francis Douglas and Douglas Hadow, the last three all British. The last four mentioned fell to their deaths during the descent. This was the first catastrophe in the history of climbing the Alps.

A Testimonial for the First Ascenders

The Hörnligrat on the Matterhorn is illuminated three times for 11 minutes each evening until the end of September 2015 as follows:

  • 9:15 to 9:26 pm
  • 10 to 10:11 pm
  • 10:30 to 10.41 pm