Mountain biking

Glacier Bike Tour 10. Visp - Zermatt

From vineyards to snow-covered peaks, from the heart of the Valais to the foot of the Matterhorn, this final stage between Visp and Zermatt has a 1,400-metre climb ensuring a finish on a high note.

  • Type Mountain biking
  • Difficulty S1 medium
  • Duration 3,21 h
  • Distance 37,6 km
  • Ascent 1150 m
  • Descent 190 m
  • Lowest point 658 m
  • Highest point 1346 m

Description

On this final leg of the Glacier Bike Tour (GBT), the terraced vineyards gradually give way to a more mountainous backdrop. Departing from Visp, you’ll pass through the villages of Stalden and Kalpetran, following an old mule track along historic dry-stone walls, before continuing on to St Niklaus. From here, follow the railway line and the Vispa, past thundering waterfalls and the imposing Bishorn glacier tongue on the eastern side of the Weisshorn massif. Straight ahead, you’ll be able to admire the Klein Matterhorn and the gleaming ridge of the Breithorn, one of the region's many 4,000 m peaks. From Täsch onwards, the forest path turns into a tough mountain bike trail, which you can avoid by branching off prematurely onto the road where the last stretch before the finish takes place. On the final stretch, the majestic Matterhorn finally appears, that 4,478 m high rock pyramid with its striking triangular shape: a magical moment.

On the way to the Zermatt valley, the Rhône is replaced by the Vispa, and you’ll follow mountain bike route no. 150 Visp-Zermatt following the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn line, until you arrive in Zermatt. As you depart from Visp, you’ll leave the vineyards and head for the village of Stalden on the other side of the valley, continuing towards Kalpetran along an old mule track with dry-stone walls. Shortly afterwards, you’ll return to the road as far as St Niklaus, then continue along the railway line and the Vispa to Randa with its meadows and pastures. From Täsch onwards, the forest path turns into a tough mountain bike trail, which you can avoid by branching off onto the road, and the last stretch before the finish takes place on a road with very little traffic, as Zermatt is a car-free village. Once you've completed all ten legs of the Glacier Bike Tour, the first thing you'll want to do is have a drink and celebrate!

We recommend: a bike in excellent working order, a helmet, gloves and a bell, clothing suitable for the weather (always carry a waterproof), food and drink.

 

Which e-bike should one use on the Glacier Bike Tour? Professional cyclist and twice E-MTB world champion Nathalie Schneitter demonstrates the ideal two-wheeler in this video. A sturdy, comfortable full-suspension e-bike with wide, grippy tyres, powerful brakes and, if possible, a lowerable seat post. One needs to be ready for anything in the mountains, even in midsummer. So what should one plan to include in one’s bike bags for an adventure that – incorporating three mountain passes and landscapes that are as Alpine as they are Mediterranean – is about as exceptional as it gets? Having already completed the Glacier Bike Tour, cycling pro Nathalie Schneitter reveals her list of what to pack.

 

Preparing for mountain bike outings

Don’t miss a chance to relax, swim or waterski on the Schalisee lake in Täsch, not to mention the pumptrack and skill center at the Bike Zone Schali.

Use marked bike trails and routes only, making sure you observe all signposting. The Glacier Bike Tour route is under development and is not signposted. While on the route, you can find your way using the Outdoor Active app.

Kindly close gates after passing through. Please be considerate to walkers, as well as to plants and animals. As a rule, walkers have priority. When planning, take into account participants’ fitness level and ability. All riding is at one’s own risk.

 

Preparing for mountain bike outings

Map and arrival