Glacier 3000 Ski Resort

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Glacier 3000 ski resort Switzerland
Glacier 3000 ski resort Switzerland
Glacier 3000 ski resort powder skiing in January
Glacier 3000 ski resort powder skiing in January
Glacier 3000 off-piste terrain & the cable car heading up to Scex Rouge
Glacier 3000 off-piste terrain & the cable car heading up to Scex Rouge's 2.971m summit
Les Diablerets is the closest village to Glacier 3000 ski resort
Les Diablerets is the closest village to Glacier 3000 ski resort
Travel by train in Switzerland is wonderful & the recommended mode of travel to Glacier 3000
Travel by train in Switzerland is wonderful & the recommended mode of travel to Glacier 3000
Villars-Gryon-Diablerets ski resort is lift pass linked Glacier 3000 & provides wonderful terrain in poor weather
Villars-Gryon-Diablerets ski resort is lift pass linked Glacier 3000 & provides wonderful terrain in poor weather
Scex Rouge quad chair at Glacier 3000 ski resort Switzerland
Scex Rouge quad chair at Glacier 3000 ski resort Switzerland
Nothing like the feel of air beneath one
Nothing like the feel of air beneath one's feet on the Peak Walk at Glacier 3000 ski resort
The cable car from Cabane meets the PostBus at Col du Pillon, the main access point to skiing Glacier 3000
The cable car from Cabane meets the PostBus at Col du Pillon, the main access point to skiing Glacier 3000
Overview from Scex Rouge at Glacier 3000, the burnt out Botta restaurant will be replaced for 23/24
Overview from Scex Rouge at Glacier 3000, the burnt out Botta restaurant will be replaced for 23/24
The impressive Quille du Diable backs onto the upper glacier ski runs at Glacier-3000 resort
The impressive Quille du Diable backs onto the upper glacier ski runs at Glacier-3000 resort
The long on-piste ski descent to Oldenegg at Glacier 3000, but this time in powder
The long on-piste ski descent to Oldenegg at Glacier 3000, but this time in powder
Be careful putting your skis on to access the off-piste from Scex Rouge at Glacier 3000 ski resort
Be careful putting your skis on to access the off-piste from Scex Rouge at Glacier 3000 ski resort
Glacier 3000 freeride skiing amongst rock pillars near the Black Wall on an epic descent to Col du Pillon
Glacier 3000 freeride skiing amongst rock pillars near the Black Wall on an epic descent to Col du Pillon
Les Diablerets village is beautifully located under Glacier 3000 ski resort
Les Diablerets village is beautifully located under Glacier 3000 ski resort
The village of Gstaad is close to Glacier 3000 ski resort & provides direct bus links through the day
The village of Gstaad is close to Glacier 3000 ski resort & provides direct bus links through the day
Off-piste skiing down to Col du Pillon is amazing at Glacier 3000
Off-piste skiing down to Col du Pillon is amazing at Glacier 3000
	Off-piste powder on the steep face of the 2971m Scex Rouge at Glacier 3000
Off-piste powder on the steep face of the 2971m Scex Rouge at Glacier 3000
Powder skiing to the Cabane des Diablerets mountain refuge at Glacier 3000
Powder skiing to the Cabane des Diablerets mountain refuge at Glacier 3000
Glacier 3000 in Switzerland looms over awesome ski resorts like Villars Gryon Diablerets & Leysin
Glacier 3000 in Switzerland looms over awesome ski resorts like Villars Gryon Diablerets & Leysin

Glacier 3000 Ski Resort

Readers Ratings

Glacier 3000

Glacier 30004/51
Glacier 30004 out of 5 based on 1 reviews
  • Recommend
    100%
  • Would Revisit
    100%
Guide and Ride Ski Tours
Wagner Custome Skis

Nearby Ski Resorts

Gstaad
Villars-Gryon-Diablerets
Leysin

Glacier 3000 Maps & Stats

    Glacier 3000 Ski Trail Map
  • Glacier 3000 Ski Trail Map
  • Vertical (m)
    1,350m - 3,016m (1,666m)
  • Average Snow Fall
    Unknown
  • Lifts (11)
    3 Gondola/cable cars
    3 Chairs
  • Opening Dates & Times
    Early Nov to early May
    Access Lifts - 9:00am to 4:30pm/4:40pm
    Ski Lifts 9:15am to 4:00pm
  • Terrain Summary
    Runs - 37km+(incl. ski routes)
    Longest run - 8km+
    Advanced - 37%
    Intermediate - 20%
    Beginner - 43%

    Vaud Alpes Ski Pass area - 232km
  • Ski Lift Pass Price
    Day Ticket 23/24
    Glacier 3000 only
    Adult - CHF75
    Child - CHF49
    Child u/5yr - Free
    Villars-Gryon-Les Diablerets Ski Trail Map
  • Les Diablerets-Villars-Gryon Ski Trail Map
    Gstaad Ski Trail Map
  • Gstaad Ski Trail Map

Glacier 3000 Ski Resort Switzerland

Glacier 3000 ski resort has the epic proportions expected in the Swiss Alps, plus the added distinction of spanning 3 different cantons - Vaud, Bern & Valais! One of Switzerland’s main glacier ski resorts with extended operating seasons (the others being Zermatt, Saas Fee & Engelberg et al), Glacier 3000 is open to skiing for up to seven months of the year. In an ever-warming world, that stat alone puts it on the ‘must visit’ list for any budding Powderhound. Steep, off-piste freeride powder descents of up to 1,800m vertical are another good reason. Staying in gorgeous Swiss Alps villages like Les Diablerets & Gstaad doesn't hurt the 'must visit' rationale either!

Pros & Cons for Glacier 3000 Ski Resort

Pros

  • Snow-sure ski resort with a long season.
  • Authentic Swiss Alps villages nearby (high-end Gstaad & more approachable Les Diablerets).
  • Breathtaking, long skiable vertical of over 1,650m.
  • Classic high-alpine off-piste freeride routes.
  • Quality on-piste trails for beginner & advanced skiers & snowboarders.
  • Groomed runs up to 8km long.
  • Very good value multi-day lift pass price (for Switzerland).
  • Lift pass links to other nearby, expansive ski areas.
  • Public transport access by train & bus is excellent.

Cons

  • Limited accommodation in the resort, (one mountain refuge), but villages are nearby.
  • Limited on-piste trails for intermediate skiers & snowboarders.
  • High elevation zone is exposed & prone to lift closures in poor weather.

Pro or Con (depending on your perspective!)

  • Relatively small on-piste ski area (particularly if the off-piste happens to be cruddy), best combined with others in the region.
  • No valley trail for novices or intermediates, so downloading on cable cars is essential.
  • Magic Pass is valid in the resort, great if you have one, not so great if you don't!

Skiing & Snowboarding, Lift & Terrain

The Glacier 3000 skiing & snowboarding terrain includes alpine & sub-alpine terrain ranging from flattish glacier slopes up to serious off-piste freeride descents & everything in between. A relatively small ski area of only 30km of trails, it does nonetheless have loads of off-piste powder potential on its gnarly terrain. Whilst there is surprisingly very few trails rated as intermediate, skiing top to bottom is possible on the piste for better snow sliders down to the Reusch base, providing up to 8km of satisfying groomed descent. Off-piste routes are plentiful and include descents of up to 1,800m vertical to base areas not currently accessible by piste trail i.e. Col du Pillon & Les Diablerets village. The drop down the face of the Scex Rouge is an obvious choice that can be scoped out from the cable car as it ascends from Cabane. If in doubt, get a guide or stay on piste! The big news from season 22/23 was the establishment (or to be precise, the re-establishment) of an advanced piste trail from Cabane down nearly 1,000m vertical to the base at Pillon. Access to the top of the Pierres Pointes run (Black Wall) will be via a 265m tunnel, thus avoiding the most difficult upper section of the descent. The whole run is around 3km in length. Either side of the run, still accessible whether the tunnel is open or not, is stellar north-aspect freeride off-piste that leads via various routes via rocky spires & forests back to the Col du Pillon base or at least down to the road, requiring a short walk back to the Pillon car park.

Check out the latest ski trail map for Glacier 3000 below.

Glacier 3000 Ski Trail Map
Glacier 3000 Ski Trail Map

The ski lifts at Glacier 3000 are placed to efficiently link the glacier & alpine valleys in a terrain setting that is best described as ‘awkward’! Two cable cars provide the initial uphill motion from separate bases at Reusch & Col du Pillon. If one has the choice, the cable car from Col du Pillon is definitely the quickest way to the top! A new surface tow providing a better link Olden slope's black run will start this coming season as well.

For early season turns, Glacier 3000 once opened in late September/early October and was well known for its snow-park operating on the glacier from October onward with line rails, tanks, kicker jumps, flat tubes & other features for lovers of all things unnatural! After a long, hot summer, damage to the glacier (plus some restaurant infrastructure damaged by a fire), the resort won’t now open for skiing until early November. Such is life is an ever-warming environment. The resort ski lifts stop turning in early May, but the main cable cars to Scex Rouge run all year round for tourists & ski-tourers.

Lift Passes

It is possible to purchase a single-day Glacier 3000 lift pass, but all other multi-day passes at the resort are part of the ‘Vaud Alps’ (‘Area Vaudoises Alpes’) lift pass which includes several neighbouring ski areas including Leysin-Les Mosses/La Lécherette & Villars-Gryon-Diablerets.

The resort of Villars-Gryon-Diablerets can be easily accessed from lifts extending from the Les Diablerets village. A host of ski lifts on the north side of Les Diablerets village to Isenau & Floriette allowed, amongst other things, ski access to the Col du Pillon, but were closed without replacement in 2017. There is a plan to re-establish a gondola to the peak of Isenau, but time will tell! See here for the current Villars-Gryon-Diablerets ski trail map.

Leysin-Les Mosses/La Lécherette is further afield and requires either a 20km drive or a train/bus journey via Le Sépey station. See here for the Leysin-Les Mosses/La Lecherette ski trail map.

The best value season pass in the world, Magic Pass, is valid at Glacier 3000 and all the surrounding resorts (not including Gstaad).

Where is Glacier 3000, Switzerland?

With terrain spanning 3 different Swiss cantons - Vaud, Bern & Valais, it is no surprise that Glacier 3000 can be accessed from multiple directions. By road, the resort’s main ski lift base at the Col du Pillon is only 134km (1¾hr) east of Geneva and 200km (3hr) drive southwest of Zurich. The delightful lakeside city of Montreux is a paltry 40km away. As with much of Switzerland, Glacier 3000 is best approached by train via Aigle to Les Diablerets; or the longer journey via Montreux to Gstaad or through Spiez & Zweisimmen to Gstaad.

Whilst the closest international gateway airport to access the region is Geneva (GVA), the airport at Zurich (ZRH) can provide a better travel experience & entry point, even though travel time to the ski area is slightly longer. Put simply, if staying in Les Diablerets, go to Geneva, if staying in Gstaad, consider Zurich!

The recommended mode of travel to the Glacier 3000 villages is by train. From the Geneva airport, direct trains to Aigle (direction Brig) leave every hour through the day, taking 1⅓hr. From Aigle station, regional trains depart hourly from the ‘outside platforms’ travelling to Les Diablerets in 50min! Total travel time to Les Diablerets from the airport at Geneva is usually less than 3hr. If staying in Montreux prior to skiing, Aigle is only a 10min train ride from the city.

To get to Gstaad, or closer to the glacier at Gsteig bei Gstaad, the train offers some fascinating journeys. From the Geneva airport, trains run to Gstaad with one change at Montreux via the spectacular Golden Pass in under 3hr. From the opposite direction, trains from Bern & Zurich make the journey to Gstaad via Spiez & Zweisimmen. From Zurich airport the journey to Gstaad is around 3½hr. If you have your own plane, Gstaad has its own airfield! From Gstaad get a private transfer to your accommodation or catch the route 180 bus up to the ski area or to Les Diablerets.

Search & book here for train tickets to Les Diablerets or Gstaad. Purchase bus tickets from the driver.

If public transport is not your thing, one can easily fork out the francs for a private transfer direct to your hotel from the airport. Whilst it can be quite time efficient & affordable for groups of 3 or more people, part of any Swiss ski experience is using the trains, so get on board. And you will doing the environment a favour too - POW (Protect Our Winters) .

It is easy to drive yourself in a rental car to either destination, but as per above, you are in Switzerland, so why drive? Take the train & enjoy the ride.

Once in the region, free ski buses shuttle guests to the base areas of Glacier 3000, circulating throughout the day. From Les Diablerets the ski bus leaves from the train station, travelling via numerous village stops before heading up to the cable car base at Col du Pillon. From Gstaad, the bus (route 180) runs to the Reusch cable car base via Gsteig-bei-Gstaad and then onto Col du Pillon & Les Diablerets.

For hints, tips & warnings about getting to Swiss ski resorts in winter, see our Travel in Switzerland page.

Glacier 3000 Accommodation

Glacier 3000’s position above the Col du Pillon provides a wide range of lodging options. Above, near the Cabane middle station, the Cabane des Diablerets has rustic mountain hut accommodation with shared bedrooms and facilities, available through out winter. West of the Col, the closest village is charming Les Diablerets. Conveniently accessible by train, the village is in a splendid location. Ski lifts extending from near the centre of town link into the varied Villars-Gryon ski terrain. A free ski bus links the town to the Glacier 3000 ski area at Col du Pillon. There are plans to re-establish a gondola up to Isenau, allowing for lift-assisted skiing down to Col du Pillon.

In the centre of town, near the Diablerets gondola, the affordable Auberge de la Poste guesthouse, Hotel Le Chamois and Hôtel Les Sources, the lovely but hard to get into Hotel Restaurant Les Lilas, plus the 4-star Eurotel Victoria covers the full gamut of the commercial lodging available. A host of private chalets & apartments are available throughout the village for holiday rental also. A short distance down the valley at Les Bovets, the historic Swiss Historic Hotel du Pillon has a sunny location & oozes old world charm without the price tag!

Search & book here for Les Diablerets ski accommodation.

On the eastern side of the Col du Pillon, the first village beyond the ski area’s Reusch cable car base is the pretty hamlet of Gsteig-bei-Gstaad. The Hotel Baeren provides an idyllic local stay.

Search & book here for Gsteig bei Gstaad ski accommodation.

To the north of Gsteig, the Gstaad ski region comprises numerous towns & villages in the Sarine (Saane) valley on the canton Bern side of the Glacier 3000 ski area. The ski region’s namesake, Gstaad, is the most central & liveliest of the villages. On the face of it catering to the higher end of the market, Gstaad has lodgings to suit all budgets. Whilst the various villages in the valley have much to offer, and all are beautifully connected by train to Montreux via the Golden Pass train line, it is Gstaad that is the complete package & the best place to stay for an extended period. Whether you choose to stay in a high-falutin 5-star hotel or an apartment on a local farm, the glacier is only a short bus ride away.

Search & book here for all Gstaad ski accommodation.

A night or two in the lakeside city of Montreux can also provide a few wonderfully relaxing days before or after the ski trip.

Ski Rentals, Lessons & Guiding

Ski rentals are available in Les Diablerets via our local partners. Receive a discount when you search & book via our Glacier 3000 Ski & Snowboard Rental page.

A local ski guide or instructor may make all the difference to an off-piste powder day on BIG terrain in an unfamiliar ski resort like Glacier 3000. Search & book via our Glacier 3000 Ski Lessons & Guiding page.

Mountain Restaurants

Places to eat are widely spread across Glacier 3000. At the top of Scex Rouge cable car, the Botta Restaurant was burnt out in a fire for season 22/23, but has been rebuilt for season 23/24. At the top of the surface tows on the glacier at the Quille du Diable, Restaurant Refuge l’Espace serves regional delicacies with amazing views across the mountains. Note that the building is cobbled together in 'rustic alpine refuge style', so keep your expectations low. At the end of the day, or between off-piste descents, the Restaurant Col du Pillon is right next to the cable bar base and serves very tasty, well-priced local food. We fueled up here. Other options are the ski-in Cabane des Diablerets, but we are unsure of its lunch offerings! There is apparently a bar at the valley station at Reusch, but again we are unsure of its offerings.

As with many of the Alps’ glacier-based ski resorts, Glacier 3000 has several non-ski activities to distract one from the slopes and take in the natural splendour of the region. The most obvious is the Peak Walk. A suspension bridge spanning two rocky outcrops near the cable car station at Scex Rouge (2,971m altitude), the walk is all about the views and the tingling feel of airy vertical below your feet. Nearby is a Glacier Walk and a glacial cave referred to as the Ice Cathedral. Additional non-ski options include dog-sledding and a snow-play park that allows tobogganing.

Activities

As with many of the Alps’ glacier-based ski resorts, Glacier 3000 has several non-ski activities to distract one from the slopes and take in the natural splendour of the region. The most obvious is the Peak Walk. A suspension bridge spanning two rocky outcrops near the cable car station at Scex Rouge (2,971m altitude), the walk is all about the views and the tingling feel of airy vertical below your feet. Nearby is a Glacier Walk and a glacial cave referred to as the Ice Cathedral. Additional non-ski options include dog-sledding and a snow-play park that allows tobogganing.

Nearby Ski Resorts

Glacier 3000 is the highest point in the region and surrounded by numerous ski resorts. To the north is the expansive Gstaad Ski Region. To the west is the combination of Diablerets-Villars-Gryon. Leysin is an intriguing option with incredible looking terrain, and easily accessible by train and bus via Le Sépey train station at Ormont-Dessous.

Reviews

The Powderhounds reviewed Glacier 3000 in January 2023 and absolutely adored it. Huge freeride powder skiing under a blue sky in cold temperatures providing an unforgettable experience. We will be heading back to explore some more of it next season. Click on the review link in the left column (or top of the page if on a mobile) to read the reviews.

See how Glacier 3000 compares to the rest of the Swiss ski resorts on the Switzerland ski resort ratings page, or compare to the rest of Europe on the European ski resort ratings page.

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