We'll be up on the glacier for a week. Everything we need has to be flown in including food and water, and, of course, our skis. No room for them in the helicopter. Also, bad weather, and poor visibility or high winds, may prevent the helicopters from returning, so we are on our own. We have to be prepared and self-sufficient.
It may be spring in the valley, but up at 3400 meters it is still wintery white, and chilly. It is spring, and the temperatures can soar, but on this particular morning, the winter parkas were a must, especially with the wind.
Standing around in the early morning, waiting for the helicopters to be ready. They will fly us up to the glacier 4-at a time. We are about 12-15 people so there are 2-helicopters, which will also fly up our ski equipment and food and supplies in the cargo nets.
Everyone standing around in their winter parkas on a beautiful late March morning, waiting for the chopters to be ready to take off. It is an exciting moment. Let's see what did I forget to pack?
Equipment: Will add more later after I get the photos uploaded. Sorry, but takes so long. Please check back.
From Mürren we descended towards tiny hamlet of Gimmelwald - a pleasant 40-min. walk. The road is well marked. You can take the Mürren-Gimmelwald gondola instead (5 minutes ride, not covered by Swiss Pass). Gimmelwald has no food store, so stock up in Mürren.
Gimmelwald is a small farming hamlet of 130 inhabitants, is an ideal starting point for wonderful walks and hikes in a wild, beautiful area. Hiking in Switzerland is among the best in the world.
For many people the views from the top of Schilthorn is the best natural scenery they will see in their lifetime. Start hiking early, because as it often happens the clouds roll in out of nowhere by mid-afternoon. If you think you can't handle the climb (close to 5 hours, counting lunch, breaks and photo stops on the way), I highly recommend you take a gondola, (even though it's somewhat expensive, but Swiss Pass offers a discount), and then perhaps descent on your own and save money on that.
The cable railway follows the trail of James Bond to the Piz Gloria on the Schilthorn (the region became particularly well-known thanks to the film “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”). The rotating restaurant on top of Schilthorn is pretty expensive but you would expect it. They claim that from Piz Gloria you not only can observe Eiger, Mönch, Jungfrau, but 200 further peaks, 43 glaciers, and a view that reaches all the way into Germany and France (on a clear day, of course). A complete spin takes one hour; the revolving restaurant was the first worldwide to be built at an altitude of 3000 m at the sea level in 1969. Do not miss the Touristorama underneath the restaurant with it's beautiful slide show covering all seasons and activities of the area, and scenes from the James Bond movie.
Equipment: Even if it's a hot day, don't forget to bring a jacket, because it's cooler at higher elevations.