Davos Klosters Lifts & Terrain

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Jakobshorn at Davos has great lift access from the train station & car parks, even in blizzards!
Jakobshorn at Davos has great lift access from the train station & car parks, even in blizzards!
Skiing Davos in the height of a blizzard; no people, our tracks only.
Skiing Davos in the height of a blizzard; no people, our tracks only.
The long, lonely descent toward Obersäss & Klosters on Parsenn
The long, lonely descent toward Obersäss & Klosters on Parsenn
Schwarzseealp chairlift on Parsenn at Davos is deserted during blizzards
Schwarzseealp chairlift on Parsenn at Davos is deserted during blizzards
Rinerhorn cable car is the most modern on this mountain; from the late 1980s!
Rinerhorn cable car is the most modern on this mountain; from the late 1980s!
Second stage of the Parsenn funicular at Davos winds its way up the snowy mountain
Second stage of the Parsenn funicular at Davos winds its way up the snowy mountain
Fresh snow exit on the valley trails at Rinerhorn late in the day
Fresh snow exit on the valley trails at Rinerhorn late in the day
Hooded 6-seater Furka Zipper chairlift on Parsenn at Davos is the region
Hooded 6-seater Furka Zipper chairlift on Parsenn at Davos is the region's most modern ski lift
Off-piste route 12 under the Totalp chair near Weissfluhjoch on Parsenn at Davos
Off-piste route 12 under the Totalp chair near Weissfluhjoch on Parsenn at Davos
Lower section of the Schiferbahn gondola in Parsenn ski area, Davos
Lower section of the Schiferbahn gondola in Parsenn ski area, Davos
Valley trail into Wolfgang from Parsennhütte, not wide, but an easy advanced groomed run
Valley trail into Wolfgang from Parsennhütte, not wide, but an easy advanced groomed run
Even Davos Klosters most popular ski area, Parsenn, is deserted on a storm day!
Even Davos Klosters most popular ski area, Parsenn, is deserted on a storm day!
Powder skiing near Nord See at Rinerhorn, Davos-Klosters ski resort
Powder skiing near Nord See at Rinerhorn, Davos-Klosters ski resort
The long ski journey to Kublis is a quintessential Davos-Klosters experience
The long ski journey to Kublis is a quintessential Davos-Klosters experience
Lifts in all directions at Parsennhütte above Davos
Lifts in all directions at Parsennhütte above Davos
The funicular from Davos to Parsenn is a tedious affair, but then again all funicular rides are!
The funicular from Davos to Parsenn is a tedious affair, but then again all funicular rides are!
The learn-to-ski lifts at Bolgen below Jakobshron near Davos Platz
The learn-to-ski lifts at Bolgen below Jakobshron near Davos Platz
Get ready to race the train down to Klosters on trail number 21
Get ready to race the train down to Klosters on trail number 21
Mid-mountain on Jakobshorn in a blizzard. Tracked but they are all ours!
Mid-mountain on Jakobshorn in a blizzard. Tracked but they are all ours!
Enjoy powder skiing & snowboarding Davos Klosters .... we did!
Enjoy powder skiing & snowboarding Davos Klosters .... we did!

Davos Klosters Lifts & Terrain

Our Terrain Ratings

Powderhound rating = advanced/expert terrain + powder + freshies + uncrowded

Our Terrain Ratings

Powderhound rating = advanced/expert terrain + powder + freshies + uncrowded

Nearby Ski Resorts

Arosa
Chur
Lenzerheide
St Moritz

    Davos Klosters (Parsenn & Madrisa) Ski Trail Map
  • Davos Klosters (Parsenn-Madrisa) Ski Trail Map
  •  Davos Klosters (Jakobshorn, Pischa, Rinerhorn) Ski Trail Map
  • Davos Klosters (Jakobshorn-Rinerhorn-Pischa) Ski Trail Map
  • Vertical (m)
    Parsenn
    1,191m - 2,844m (1,653m)

    Madrisa
    1,124m - 2,602m (1,478m)

    Jakobshorn
    1,540m - 2,590m (1,050m)
  • Average Snow Fall
    8 to 10m
  • Lifts (54)
    15 Gondolas / cable cars / funiculars
    15 Chairs
  • Opening Dates & Times
    December to mid-April
    8:00am to 4:30pm
  • Terrain Summary
    Runs - 300km
    Longest run - 12km+
    Advanced - 29%
    Intermediate - 45%
    Beginner - 26%
  • Lift Pass Price
    Day Ticket 21/22
    Davos Klosters Mountains Regional Ski Pass
    Valid for 5 ski areas (excl. Schatzalp)
    Adult - CHF80
    Child - CHF32
    Child u/6yr - Free

    Combi Ticket
    (Valid at Parsenn & Jakobshorn)
    Adult - CHF78
    Child - CHF31
    Child u/6yr - Free

    Individual Ski Area 1-day Pass
    (Parsenn, Jakobshorn, Madrisa, Rinerhorn, Pischa, or Schatzalp-Strela)
    Adult - CHF36 to 75
    Child - CHF12 to 30
    Child u/6yr - Free
     Parsenn Ski Trail Map
  • Parsenn Ski Trail Map
    Madrisa Ski Trail Map
  • Madrisa Ski Trail Map
    Jakobshorn Ski Trail Map
  • Jakobshorn Ski Trail Map
    Rinerhorn Ski Trail Map
  • Rinerhorn Ski Trail Map
    Pischa Ski Trail Map
  • Pischa Ski Trail Map

Davos Klosters Skiing & Snowboarding

Davos Klosters skiing & snowboarding is a magical mystery tour of epic proportions. Six ski areas, five of which are covered by the one ski pass, provide every type of ski lift, terrain & trail imaginable. The five main ski areas are Parsenn, Madrisa, Jakobshorn, Pischa & Rinerhorn. The sixth ski area is Schatzalp, the smallest of the group and one not included in the regional lift pass. Piste trails total over 300km in length with something for every ski proclivity. It’s so big that there are two sides to the ski trail map. See the Parsenn-Madrisa ski trail map and the Jakobshorn-Pischa-Rinerhorn ski trail map.

The epic proportions include all ski areas having most of the ski terrain above a snow sure 1,900m elevation to make the most of the 10m average snowfall. As well as unlimited off-piste skiing & snowboarding terrain, there are no less than 12 valley piste trails (& many more routes), several over 12km long, leading back to all points in the valley, with one trail descends over 2,030 vertical metres. And to top it off, when you find yourself in an apparently remote village, you will likely find a nearby train station for the journey back to Davos or Klosters.

When looking at the photos above, note that during the Powderhounds visit we encountered the fiercest blizzard of season 2017/18. Ski conditions were amazing with powder everywhere. However poor visibility & cyclonic winds (right across Europe) were a challenge to the ski lift operators. A great testament to them (& the multiple aspects in the ski resort) that we did any lift assisted skiing at all. If you could only have seen the face-shots we got!

Davos-Klosters Ski Areas

Parsenn

The region’s largest ski area, Parsenn covers a sprawling mountain landscape from Davos to Klosters and well beyond. Its 102km of trails (including 6km of ski routes) extend to all points of the compass and include a thigh liquefying 2,034m of skiable vertical form the top of Weissflujhgipfel (2,844m) down to the village of Küblis (810m). A feature of the ski area are the eight super-long (up to 14km) valley trails, most suitable for intermediates. Several require a train ride to get back to the lifts.

Backcountry fiends will be in their element at Parsenn, with innumerable descent options, including off the back of Weissfluhgipfel and down toward the train line to Arosa at Langwies.

See the Parsenn ski trail map.

Jakobshorn

Straight out of the train station at Davos Platz, under the rail line and into the cable car for the upper mountain or walk across to Bolgen Plaza for Davos’ best learn-to-ski area & terrain park. Ascending to the summit, fresh tracks may be the order of the day at this northwest aspect ski area on the opposite side of town to Parsenn. Its 55km of trails include a reasonable split for all abilities when one considers the more difficult ski routes.

Jakobshorn has the most traditional & easy to understand terrain and lifts of the entire Davos Klosters ski region. An excellent beginner’s area and half pipe at the base near town, piste trails for all levels above the tree line, the resorts 1,050m of skiable vertical can be a good option on a powder day with low visibility. Good freeride terrain including tree skiing for advanced & experts is in between the alpine zone and base.

See the Jakobshorn ski trail map.

Madrisa

The local mountain for Klosters, Madrisa has a sunny disposition and some great skiing on a massive mountain with a skiable vertical of 1,460 m served by only 7 lifts. The scope of the off-piste terrain far outweighs the 26km of groomers at Madrisa. With limited scope for novices & beginners, there is a range a range of non-ski activities to keep everyone happy. Situated on the frontier with Austria, the resort is part of the notorious Smugglers Run between it & Gargellen ski resort over the border. The valley trail is rated ‘black’ but would probably be negotiable by intermediates. Novices & beginners will need to download back to Klosters

See the Madrisa ski trail map.

Rinerhorn

A few steps away from the Davos Glaris train station, Rinerhorn is a resort that feels like a throwback to the 80s. It has a range of groomed pistes for all abilities on its 1,036m skiable vertical & 52km of trails (plus 6km of ski routes), including all the way to the valley. Above the top gondola station in the treeless alpine zone, the 6 lifts are all surface tows (T-bars) which will test the snowboarders and the legs of skiers gone soft on a diet of express chairlifts and gondolas with heated seats! Top to bottom runs at Rinerhorn are in the order of 8km long. Choosing a valley trail to suit your ability will see you down the bottom and an enthusiastic après session at the bar in the car park in no time.

See the Rinerhorn ski trail map.

Pischa

Pischa is the Davos Klosters answer to Diavolezza Lagalb near St Moritz. A simple cable car, nearly 700m of skiable vertical, no piste trails, 30km of ski routes & broad freeride terrain make it the adventure destination of choice. Pischa’s only downfall are its sunny southwest aspect slopes!

See the Pischa ski trail map.

Davos-Klosters Skiing Highlights

Tick off the following when at Davos Klosters.

  • On a bright sunny day, get to know the region by completing the ‘Powderhounds 5-Resort Challenge’ in a day. Purchase a Regional Ski Pass and using only public transport start at Davos and ski (or board) from the summit at Weissfluhgipfel on Parsenn across to Klosters, then Klosters up to Madrisa’s highest point before a full vertical return to the village. By train and bus got to Pischa and complete at least one full lap on the ancient cable car. Return by bus to Davos and take the Jakobshorn cable cars to the summit, then descend all the way back to Davos, take the train (or bus to Glaris station and ride up to the top of Rinerhorn’s Nüllisch Grat then choose your full vertical descent, ending with a well earnt drink at the Blockhuus! Take the train or bus back to Davos!
  • Race the train into Klosters. On the descent into Klosters from Gotschnaboden, wait for a train to cross the bridge over the No.21 ski trail and race it back down the mountain. You should beat it into Klosters, but one never knows!
  • Ski to another country by completing the round trip from Madrisa via Schlappinerjoch to Gargellen in Austria, returning via the Smugglers route. Get a guide if unsure how!
  • Discover the classic off-piste descent to Langwies toward Arosa from Parsenn.
  • Descend all eight valley on Parsenn in a day. Now THAT is a challenge. One is a ski route (from Gotschnboden to Klosters), so don’t leave it too last as it can be a wild ride.
  • On a fresh snow morning with reasonable visibility, take the bus to Pischa and cut off-piste powder laps until your heart is content.
  • Just explore and get kinda lost in what is a vast ski region worthy of a stay longer than what you had planned!

Ski Lifts

The region's ski lifts are an odd mix of every type of uphill conveyance imaginable, making for some interesting journeys! Modern & vintage collide here as well. Parsenn & Jakobshorn have a generally updated selection of lifts, however at Rinerhorn & Pischa, the average age of the ski lifts is older than many of the visiting adults! The venerable cable car at Pischa dates from the late 1960s & Rinerhorn's most recent lift was constructed in the late 1980s. Even on Parsenn, despite having the newest lifts (including the hooded 6-seat Furka Zipper), the cable cars up around the Weissfluh are ancient too. The Wiessfluhgipfel cable car was installed in 1955!

A major negative with the lift network at Parsenn is the 2-stage funicular lift from Davos Dorf up to Weissfluhjoch. A painfully long journey, unless the weather is totally feral, we suggest avoiding the second stage of the funicular and alighting at the Mittelstation. Click into skis/board and ride the appropriately named 'Rapid' chairlift to the top.

Beginner skiers & snowboarders heading into the alpine zone of Parsenn or Madrisa will rely on the lifts to download back to the valley due to the lack of easy rated valley trails.

Just as important as the ski lifts is the local bus and train that connects the entire region. Many of the best freeride descents rely on the local trains and buses to return to the towns or resorts.

Lift Pass

Davos Klosters has so many ski areas that purchasing lift passes can either be simple or a serious burden. What one buys will depend largely on how many ski areas you may visit in one day or through the week.

If skiing multiple areas over several days, the simplest but most expensive option is to buy a Davos Klosters Mountains Regional Pass. The pass covers the 5 main ski areas (Parsenn, Jakobshorn, Rinerhorn, Madrisa & Pischa), the Rhätische Bahn (train) between Küblis & Filisur plus local buses. Note that the towns of Küblis & Filisur represent the absolute extremities of the ski area.

Alternatively, the fiscally frugal may opt for buying daily local lift passes for the individual ski areas, most of which are considerably cheaper than a Regional Pass if only skiing one area per day. Each ski area has its own lift pass. The most expensive to cheapest lift pass (purely based on size & number of lifts) is Parsenn, Jakobshorn, Madrisa, Rinerhorn, Pischa & the cheap, but limited, Schatzalp-Strela. Local area passes do not include the train.

A further option for novices are the various valley lifts which often have their own incredibly affordable (practically free) lift passes.

Snowboarding Davos Klosters

A generally difficult set of resorts for inexperienced snowboarders, Davos-Klosters presents numerous challenges to the uninitiated. Riders not used to surface tows may be tested in some resort areas like Rinerhorn & the upper section of Madrisa. Learning to ride them on the novice lifts near Davos at the bottom of Jakobshorn could be of benefit. Long flat sections on many of the Parsenn valley trails present additional challenges. Experienced and well-equipped snowboarders will be fine but keep your speed up and have some poles at the ready!

On-Piste Terrain

The ski region has a fabulous terrain diversity amongst its 300km of trails. However, despite having around 26% of those trails rated ‘easy’, unlike many large Swiss Alps ski areas, and despite a high terrain rating, Davos-Klosters is not amongst the top resorts for novices & beginners. Intermediates will enjoy long journeys of discovery on nearly half of the trails, whilst advanced skiers & boarders can sample everything, but also go places where others may fear to tread.

Novice & Beginner

With around a quarter of the terrain in the region rated 'easy', there is plenty on offer for novices & beginners. However Davos Klosters is not the easiest place to learn to ski or snowboard, simply due to its disparate ski areas. Novices are best off trying one of the many affordable valley lifts before ascending the peaks. Try the Bolgen area near Davos Platz. Easy to get to, sheltered, and with enough diversity to be interesting. On clear weather days, the trainer lifts on Madrisa or Rinerhorn are best for anyone learning to turn.

Beginners progressing to something more interesting can best spend their days on Jakobshorn from top to bottom. Parts of Parsenn are navigable in the upper alpine from Weissfluhjoch across to Gotschnagrat, but a download on the funicular or cable car will be necessary back to the valleys, same for Madrisa. Rinerhorn has some fun easy piste trails, but the upper lifts can be fatiguing. Save some energy for the top to bottom trail (number 8 into 2)!

Intermediate

There are several standout locations for skiers & boarders of intermediate ability. On Parsenn, away from the ‘must do’ stupendously long valley trails into Klosters, Küblis, Serneus et al, the best intermediate pistes are around the Furka Zipper chair and the quieter sector near the Schwarzseealp chair. Madrisa and Rinerhorn are the next best options.

Advanced & Expert

Away from the super-long advanced valley trails on Parsenn, Madrisa & Rinerhorn, the only real challenges for advanced skiers & boarders on-piste are a few upper mountain steep groomers on Parsenn & Jakobshorn. The valley trails are relatively easy for most advanced riders, with the length & some flat lower sections (e.g. into Wolfgang from Parsennhütte) presenting the main intrigue! Snowboarders will benefit from keeping your speed up and having poles at the ready for these descents.

Off-Piste, Freeride & Backcountry

It is easy to get away from it all in the Davos Klosters ski region. The possibilities are endless. It is one the better regions in the Alps to use the ski lifts and ride new off-piste lines every time without the need to repeat anything during your stay (unless you want too of course). When storms set in, lower mountain tree skiing & beautiful off-piste lines under the cable cars of Jakobshorn, broad slopes below Weissfluhjoch or under the Schwarzseealp chair on Parsenn are the low hanging fruit to be plucked early. As weather improves, Pischa needs to be tracked out. As conditions stabilise, do the classics by heading into Austria from Madrisa toward Gargellen, or check out Arosa via a freeride ski from Parsenn’s Weissfluhgipfel and then a train from Langwies. On the other side of the valley, explore the backside of Jakobshorn into Teufi or the frontside out wide into Mühle. And so it goes, without even mentioning the remoter valleys away from the ski lifts like above St. Antönien, the backside of Pischa toward Klosters .......... Enjoy the voyage of discovery.