Overall Rating

Gstaad

Gstaad3.5/51
Gstaad3.5 out of 5 based on 1 reviews
  • Recommend
    100%
  • Would Revisit
    100%
Classic Dolomites Ski Safari Inspired Italy
     Gstaad Ski Trail Map
  • Gstaad Ski Trail Map
  • Vertical (m)
    948m – 3,016m (2,068m)
  • Average Snow Fall
    u/k
  • Lifts (64)
  • Opening Dates & Times
    Mid-Dec to mid-April
  • Terrain Summary
    Runs – 200km
    Longest run – 10km
    Advanced - 10%
    Intermediate - 30%
    Beginner - 60%
  • Lift Pass Price
    Day Ticket 19/20
    Adult – CHF49 to 74
    Child – CHF28 to 40
    Child u/6yr – Free
    Gstaad-Saanen-Rougemont Ski Trail Map
  • Gstaad-Saanen-Rougemont Ski Trail Map
    Zweisimmen Saanenmöser Schönried Ski Trail Map
  • Zweisimmen-Saanenmöser-Schönried Ski Trail Map
    Gstaad Wispile, Wasserngrat & Lauenen Map
  • Gstaad Wispile, Wasserngrat & Lauenen Ski Trail Map
    Glacier 3000 Ski Trail Map
  • Glacier 3000 Ski Trail Map

Gstaad - Reviews

Gstaad - Reviews

Get Curious & Ski Gstaad

POWDERHOUNDS EUROPE04/04/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Telemarker
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Admin Rating
    1

Get Curious & Ski Gstaad

POWDERHOUNDS EUROPE04/04/2019

Gstaad is a curious ski resort. 5-stars & all things nice in a head-on collision with a laid back, slowed-down rural culture all wrapped up in a ski resort. The Prada, Ralph Lauren & Louis Vuitton stores plus the looming Park Hotel & Gstaad Palace in Gstaad are juxtaposed against the traditional village architecture, the ancient Eggli & Wispile gondolas plus the hay-barns dotting the forested mountainside. Yes, a curious ski resort….

Curious is good though. We had a great trip to the area, but only had time to sample three of the 5 disjointed ski areas. The skiing rambles across a vast area of the surrounding countryside. 4 areas are covered on the standard lift pass. The expansive Zweisimmen-Saanenmöser-Schönried, the smaller Gstaad-Rougemont plus the big vertical, but limited, Wispile & Wasserngrat sectors.

From a purist ski point of view, the Gstaad-Saanen-Rougemont sector may have the longest ski run (very nice first thing in the morning) & the highest lifted point, but the Zweisimmen-Saanenmöser-Schönried sector has far & away the best diversity, restaurants, lifts & terrain (both on & off-piste). We loved it. High alpine bowls, steeps, varying aspects, long valley runs, tree skiing & varied piste trails make it an almost perfect ski area. Some of the best steeps are formally off-limits in a protected valley, but it was still being accessed by a the intrepid. The Horneggli area above Schönried has the widest freeride options & should be the go to area during a storm as the trees give superb depth perception amongst the many alpine meadows. Its single biggest question is base elevation. The base area at Zweisimmen is at 948m (fairly low for Switzerland), making the lower half of the mountain questionable at the edges of the ski season. But that’s where the 5th ski area comes into it – Glacier 3000. Near the 3209m peak of Les Diablerets, it provides the high alpine snow surety that every ski resort craves. Sad to say we didn’t ski it though – ran out of time having too much fun in the lower sectors!

The Gstaad-Saanen-Rougemont sector has the region’s best beginner trails leading to the valley at Saanen – wide, tree-lined deliciousness over 650m of vertical. The longest run in the resort from the top of La Videmanette (2151m) down to Rougemont (992m) is rated beginner (blue) for most of its 10km length – a gross underestimate. We would rate it intermediate (red). Several of the piste trails in the Gstaad sector appear to be left in a more natural state than other resorts (i.e. not manicured & flattened in summer), with all the rolling whoops & yips that come with it. The valley trail into Gstaad is case in point. Looks to cause the groomer some grief though & also means some pistes are off camber, but it is a hell of a lot of fun. Who wants to ride ‘antiseptic’ ski resorts – not us. The nostalgic ride up the ancient Eggli gondola will soon be no more as it is replaced with a brand spanker for next season, but that will hardly impact the ski area. It will benefit non skiers & sledders though.

To access the many ski areas, train or bus provides excellent connections from Gstaad & are included with a valid lift pass. Some may find the travel times painful, but we thoroughly enjoyed the journeys, particularly on the train. A free ski bus does the rounds in Gstaad connecting the village to the Bahnhof (railway station) Eggli gondola, Wispile gondola, & Wispile ski school area.

Of the two smaller ski areas, we only checked out Wispile. The gondola provides advanced skiers with a solid 900m skiable vertical, but only runs a few days per week. It can be a sweet secret powder stash if timed correctly. The lower surface lifts run full time, providing the resorts best learn-to-ski area. The lifts also give ski-in access if staying in a chalet on the hill like we were! A quirky café at the ski school area is in a working dairy. Don’t worry; glass separates the bovine & human diners, but it is nonetheless a cool experience.

Gstaad is a lovely village & the Saantal (Saan Valley) an almost perfect Swiss holiday destination. It oozes charm & comes with plenty to do for skiers & non-skiers alike. Different villages offer different experiences. All are beautifully connected by train to Montreux via the Golden Pass train line, but it is Gstaad that is the complete package & the best place to stay for an extended period. A night or two in the lakeside city of Montreux is worthwhile too. We had a wonderfully relaxing few days there after a hectic ski schedule.

So get curious & ski Gstaad in the colder months of January & February for a classic Swiss ski experience.