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Home Explore Saas-Fee Guides Magazine | Issue No.1 | Winter 2018 | English

Saas-Fee Guides Magazine | Issue No.1 | Winter 2018 | English

Published by Saas-Fee Guides, 2018-06-27 11:20:21

Description: Saas-Fee Guides Magazine _ Issue No.1 _ Winter 2018 _ English


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Issue No1 Winter 2018 EnglishADVENTU E www.saasfeeguides.comE D U C AT I O N N AT U R E

2 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018EDITORIAL Reto Sporrer \"HEADING TO NEW HORIZONS Leading at its best\"- At Saas-Fee Guides we live Director according to our mission statement every single day. Saas-Fee Guides AG Our intention is to create unforgettable moments: picture us standing alongside our guests at the summit of the Cover: Puzzle Media - Alphubel, removing the skins from our skis, preparing to drop Local snowboard legend Frederik Kalbermatten into a 2000 vertical metre descent of thirty centimetre deep scopes the Längfluh Glacier for new lines. champagne powder. However, education and safety are just as important as anything else we do. We want you to stay safe in the mountains, so we pass on our expert knowledge of snow stability and avalanche risk management through our courses, including the two day ISTA ST1 course we offer. We know how to wind down after an adventure too. Following a snowshoe tour under a full moon, for instance, you could spend the evening sipping a glass of wine or two in Bodmen Garnotzet, listening to our widely travelled guide, Beat, as he tells a wealth of fascinating stories. Adventure, education, nature - all essential parts of the mountain experience. Our young company, which has grown from the more traditional mountain guides cooperative of Saas-Fee, is committed to creating unparalleled mountain adventures. There is a long history of mountain guiding in Saas-Fee; our roots lie with legends such as Matthias Zurbriggen and Alexander Burgener, and we are proud to continue their legacy. Guiding in the mountains is a great responsibility, and for that reason each and every one of our guides holds the highest possible international certification, and boasts the countless years of experience required to make every moment of your trip as memorable as possible, while ensuring that safety always comes first. Though we treasure our history, it is essential that we remember to look towards the future. Society’s leisure activities have evolved rapidly over recent years. To cater to changing trends we must continue to branch into new activities and offerings, embracing the future as an exciting challenge to be faced. The first issue of this magazine represents our desire to forge a path into the future.

3Photo: Puzzle Media CONTENTSGigantic seracs on the Fee Glacier. Ice6Age Treading N10ew Ground Melting1m4emories Fr2o0zen Beyond B2o6undaries Golden3M2oments A Peaceful Win3t4er Wonderland Glow in4t0he Dark A Danish4L4ove Story Habits are Changin4g6but the Risk Remains Cham4p8agne Ice G5e4ckos Scaling t5h6e Ice Wall Gear5G8uide One Hel6l0of a Ride Internatio6n6al: Georgia Abo7u1t Us

4 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 VGEERTTICALAthlete: Aaron Durogati; Location: Pale di San Martino – Dolomites (Trentino); Pic: Daniele Molineris Photo: Puzzle Media Proud partner and outfitter of Location: Strahlhorn 2hrs into a tour up to the peak at 4190m

5Photo: Puzzle MediaDufourspitze (4634m) from Stahlhorn (4190m)after a tough climb. \"The mountains are calling and I must go.\" John Muir, Environmentalist (1838-1914)

6 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 ICAEGE One of the most impressive experiences offered by the mountain village of Saas-Fee is a hike amongst spectacular glacial crevasses and seracs. This glacier tour, which starts at Längfluh lift station, is easier to access than any other in the Alps. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore

\" Since arriving in Switzerland, we’ve experienced ICE AGE 7 something new every single day,\" says Suri, a 31-year- old from the Indian city of Pune who is travelling through Europe for a month with her husband, Liem. The newlywed couple are enjoying their honeymoon. Having seen Spain and France, they are spending a week in Switzerland, and Saas- Fee came highly recommended by relatives. Through the windows of the train from Zurich to Valais, they encountered snow for the first time ever. From the hotel window Liem later spied what he then described as \"peculiar blue cliffs... I had no idea that it was glacial ice,\" he explains, laughing.BETWEEN SERACS AND CREVASSES memories to last our lifetime,\" says Liem. After a great day,Two days later, the couple accompanies 67-year-old mountain Beat and the couple reflect on the day’s adventure over wineguide, Beat Supersaxo, on an excursion to those very same and Valais dried meat by Längfluh mountain hut’s log fire.\"blue cliffs\". To begin, they take the gondola from Saas-Feeup to Längfluh, travelling to 2800 metres above sea level. On \"A glacier tour is a great experience, whatever the season,\"their first gondola ride, the wonderment of the pair of travellers says mountain guide Beat Supersaxo. The Spielboden andmakes Beat laugh: \"It's like a bubble,\" observes Suri. On arrival Längfluh lifts make reaching the starting points of severalat Längfluh, Beat mounts his guests’ crampons to their hiking different glacier treks quick and easy. A tour across the glacierboots. Once safely secured with the rope, the tour begins from is readily accessible to anyone, regardless of experience.Längfluh station. After just a few minutes on the ski slopes you Upon request, the Saas-Fee Guides put together individualreach the Fee Glacier and from then, the glacier trek leads programs for their clients. If you are looking for somethingpast towering ice columns and deep crevasses. The rope more challenging, you can climb up the glacier to Längfluh,party spends about three hours negotiating the snow and ice. for example, alongside experienced guides. Combined with\"I never dreamed that I would ever step foot on a glacier,\" an evening spent in Längfluh’s cozy mountain hut, glaciersays Suri. \"Until two days ago we had never even been on trekking is also perfect for corporate and private events.a mountain, let alone taken a ride in a gondola. We hadn’teven seen real snow. In just half a day we have carved out\"A glacier tour is a great LEFT PAGE GOOD TO KNOW experience, whatever Main: The If you are interested in a tour across the season.\" movement of glaciers the Fee Glacier, no previous experience forms bizarre ice is required. In addition to highly- Beat Supersaxo, Mountain Guide towers - like here at trained and certified mountain guides, Längfluh, above Saas Saas-Fee Guides AG also provides all necessary equipment for guests. Tours Fee last between three and five hours, depending on your preference. Warm, RIGHT PAGE functional clothing and hiking boots are Top: Guests are required. roped together for safety as the path The Saas-Fee Guides are also happy leads past crevasses to put together an individual package including a cosy mountain hut evening Middle: ...and for companies or private events. through the Prices start at CHF 190.- per person mesmerising world For more information: of ice. [email protected] Bottom left: A plate +41 27 957 44 64 of local cheese and Saas-Fee Guides AG Obere Dorfstrasse 53 meat specialities. 3906 Saas-Fee Bottom centre: ... Switzerland awaits guests at the end of their tour: Längfluh mountain restaurant. Bottom right: Food and wine by the fire at Längfluh.


ICE AGE 9 PROUD PARTNER AND OUTFITTER OFNEW: THE DYNAFITSPEEDFIT COLLECTION2017/18FOR EFFICIENT SKITOURING TRAINING, ALSO IN THE EVENING.Various Speedfit Nights Events starting from December 2017.#SPEEDUP | DYNAFIT.CHMore infomation available at or through our distributers.

10 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018TREADING NEWGROUND Whether it’s an unforgettable birthday party, corporate event or even a film shoot for the next blockbuster you are looking for, Saas-Fee Guides can provide the ideal setting for any occasion, against an unrivalled backdrop. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore LEFT SIDE Main: Built in 1912, Britannia Hut stands 3,030 metres above sea level. It’s the perfect base for events with the Saas-Fee Guides. RIGHT SIDE Top: Local mountain guides from Saas-Fee Guides AG explore the slopes of the Saas Valley with their guests. Second from top: A cosy get-together for lunch at Britannia Hut. Middle: It’s no ordinary Taxi: The legendary Snow-Trac tows a group of skiers to Britannia Hut. Second from bottom: A moonlit descent with head torches at the end of a relaxing evening at the Gletschergrotte Restaurant, just above Saas-Fee. Bottom: Lynette celebrates her birthday with her friends in Saas Fee. GOOD TO KNOW Want to organize a corporate event or plan a private party? Contact Saas-Fee Guides. We would be happy to organize and execute your event. For more information: [email protected] +41 27 957 44 64 Saas-Fee Guides AG Obere Dorfstrasse 53 3906 Saas-Fee Switzerland

\" I've never seen a taxi like this,\" TREADING NEW GROUND 11 says Jon from London. The 64-year-old clings to the tow celebration alongside almost 90 rope trailing behind the tracked guests. The hut, built in 1912, stands vehicle as he and his five colleagues at 3030 metres above sea level, are pulled towards Britannia Hut, boasting an unmistakable charm, on skis. The vehicle in question is warmth and welcoming hosts. The a Snow Trac, a Scandinavian cult- excursion to Britannia Hut was just classic. A total of 400 were built one of many highlights marking between 1957 and 1981 but they the special occasion. Also on the are rarely seen in mainland Europe. itinerary were downhill runs in deep Reto Sporrer, however, Managing powder snow, snowshoe hikes and Director of Saas-Fee Guides AG, moonlit ski runs in the romantic owns one of the few that has made winter setting of Saas-Fee. it to the Alps. \"It can be driven like a car. That was a big advantage A ONE-STOP for us,\" said Sporrer. Thanks to the sophisticated transmission, a 40 SHOP Bhp engine from a VW Boxer is enough to power the 50-year-old The organization Swedish-produced vehicle. The fact that NATO once used the Snow Trac and execution - along with appropriate weaponry of course - on the Soviet Union of the week’s borders, highlights its efficiency in the mountains. programme was For Jon, the ride on the Snow Track was not the only highlight of the the responsibility week; Lynette, a good friend of his, was celebrating her 60th birthday of just one in Saas-Fee, enjoying a week-long company: Saas- “I've never seen a taxi like this.” Fee Guides AG. Jon, London Thanks to its certified and highly-trained mountain guides, set off from just behind Britannia Hut; a 1500 metre descent, with the organization perfect snow conditions and a magnificent view over the Mattmark possesses the Reservoir awaited the group. Those who preferred to move at a more technical know- leisurely pace donned snowshoes and accompanied guide Aldo how to oversee Lomatter on the 45 minute trek to Felskinn cable car station. The a multitude of evening wound down with the whole group dining together at activities in the Restaurant Don Ciccio. high-alpine FILMING WITH SAAS-FEE GUIDES terrain. By making In recent years, Saas-Fee Guides AG has also made a name for itself use of the large among production companies in the advertising and film industries. In local network 2017 alone, the guides supported ten different projects shot in the available to them, alpine terrain around Saas-Fee, including German crime series Saas-Fee Guides \"Capelli Code\". The creators of the latter worked with a production AG is able to put budget of around 16 million Swiss francs and anticipate around eight together personalised packages million viewers. The filming took place on the Feegletscher (Fee for every occasion. They can offer, Glacier) in summer 2017, not far from the Längfluh restaurant. To ensure for example, a guided glacier the safety of the film crew and actors while shooting in a crevasse, hike followed by a luxury culinary the producers relied on the services of Saas-Fee Guides AG. The experience next to a log fire at the 39-episode, three-season series, is expected to air from autumn 2018. Längfluh mountain hut. After brunch at the Britannia Hut, the avid skiers in the birthday group ventured into the surrounding area. Alongside mountain guide Gabriel Voide, Jon and his five colleagues

12 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 Restaurant / Pizzeria Boccalino Dorfstrasse 54 3906 Saas Fee [email protected]+ Starting point for: Magnificent hikes from: DARIO ANDENMATTEN Haute Route Mattmark HALTENSTRASS 16 Strahlhorn Felskinn 3906 SAAS-FEE Rimpfischhorn Plattjen Allalin Zermeiggern Welcomes you Fluchthorn Saas-Fee RESERVATION Alphubel BRITANNIA.CH [email protected] Place of excursions: Culinary from: Touring groups Diverse ‘‘Röstis‘‘ Clubs Local specialities School groups Fondue & tasty Hiking groups sweets Families

MELTING MEMORIES 19Photo: Puzzle MediaA cold day in the ice on Längfluh, Saas-Fee. \"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.\" Martin Luther King, Jr, Civil Rights Activist (1929 - 1968)

20 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018FROZEN Giant icicles and iced up walls, thrilling walkways and spectacular views: Saas-Fee’s Gorge Alpine, an unforgettable winter adventure. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore

FROZEN 21 Main: After checking their harnesses, the mountain guide watches his guests traverse the ‘Flying Fox’ (zipline) into the cave below. RIGHT SIDE Above: The Nepali suspension bridge is a real highlight at the end of the tour. Bottom: A trip through the Gorge Alpine is a great experience year-round. I t’s a crisp January morning. With every frosty breath Tanja takes, steam billows from her mouth. The twenty-three-year-old student from Stuttgart, Germany, inches her way up the ladder. Twenty metres below, the River Saaser Vispa, which sculpted this deep gorge, carves its way down to the neighbouring village of Saas-Grund. The ice-cold, crystal-clear, glacier water makes this powerfully flowing river a true spectacle; a place of tranquility just a stone’s throw away from the crowded slopes of the ski resort.“Every trip is unique!” Dominik Gnos, Mountain GuideFROM CHILL TO SAUNA metre abseil follows, down the side of GOOD TO KNOW“Take it easy, Tanja”, Dominik Gnos a striking frozen waterfall which covers Gorge Alpine is a worthwhile trip all yearinstructs, with a smile. The sixty-seven- the rock face at the exit of the gorge. round. All you need is warm clothing, goodyear-old local has been a mountain This is the ultimate highlight of the shoes and something to drink. Safetyguide for most of his life and has led day. “What an experience,” Tanja says equipment and helmets are provided bypeople on countless tours down the with an astonished glance back up to Saas-Fee Guides AG.Gorge Alpine. “On every single trip I the suspension bridge that she wasfeel privileged to be here,” he explains, teetering over the edge of just moments Prices include equipment and a fullyassisting Tanja with her carabiner, ago. Fifteen minutes later, after a short certifcated mountain guide and start at“Every trip is unique!”. Two hours bus ride up, the two adventurers arrive CHF 85.-and four adrenaline-fueled zip lines safely back in Saas-Fee village. Just alater, having tiptoed along a narrow, few minutes later, Tanja sits in the sauna For more information:rocky ledge, past impressive frozen at Aqua Allalin hostel; the huge mirrored www.saasfeeguides.comwaterfalls, sparkling icicles and crazy panoramic window allows a glimpse [email protected] snow formations, the tour, run down into the Gorge Alpine, where +41 27 957 44 64by Dominik with the reliable precision she had just made one of the most Saas-Fee Guides AGof a Swiss watch, reaches its midpoint extraordinary memories of her life. Obere Dorfstrasse 53as they cross the breathtakingly high 3906 Saas-Feealloy suspension bridge. A thirty-five Switzerland

22 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 GARTENPDROONJCEIKCCTIO RISTORANTE PIZZERIA Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, liIgtaullaiasnussppenedciisasleitnieuslla, vperegtiaumta,rrihaonncaunsdtegmlpuotrepnlafcreereatdishes fermentum, enim integer ad vestibulum avouluthtpeant.tNicisl -rhornecluasxteurdpis-estf,avmel eillyit,fcrioenngduelywisi enim nunc ultricies sit, magna tincidunt. Maecenas aliquam maecenas ligula nostra, accumsan taciti. Sociis mauris in integer. Ac dolor ac adipiscing amet bibendum nullam, massa lacus molestie ut libero nec, diam et, pharetra. Reservations +41 27 957 40 20 [email protected]

FROZEN 23 \"Courage is found in unlikely places.\" J.R.R.Tolkien, Author (1892-1973)Photo: Puzzle MediaStrahlhorn, 2hrs into a tour up to the peak at4190m.

WIN A NITRO24 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 SPLITBOARD! Rider: Jurek Ruppen Photo: Phil Bucher - We are giving away a \"Doppleganger\"- Splitboard complete with POMOCA skins to one lucky man or women. CHF 899.-Total value All you have to do is send an email to: [email protected] Full Page Advertwith the correct answer to the following question: WHICH OF THE SAAS-FEE GUIDES IS FEATURED IN THE ARTICLE ABOUT OUR WINTER TOUR OF THE GORGE ALPINE VIA FERRATA? Include your size and your contact details (phone, email and home address) in the email. The winner will be announced via Saas-Fee Guides Facebook page on March 15th.

25Photo: Puzzle MediaTaking a quick break to enjoy the views ofMittelallalin during a tour up to Alphubel.\"The only Zen you can find on thetops of mountains is the Zen youbring up there.\"Robert M. Pirsig, Philosopher

26 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 Photo: Puzzle Media Departure for the adventure: With the Landrover of Saas-Fee Guides, the powder heaven is even closer. BEYOND BOUNDARIES The most beautiful experiences are often made in the most unfamiliar places: words to live by, especially in the mountains. Saas-Fee Guides’ certified mountain guides are more than happy to show their clients stunning hidden spots, both within the Saas Valley and beyond. Photos: Puzzle Media, Caroline Gehring & Danic Ruppen Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore


28 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 T he words \"Genoa-Low\" are enough to stop any impassioned Saas Valley freerider in their tracks. At the faintest whisper of something brewing over the Gulf of Genoa, powder enthusiasts are in raptures. Such weather systems may bring strong foehn winds and warm temperatures north of the Alpine ridge, but a Genoa-Low tends to bury the Southern Alps under a blanket of deep, light powder. Fresh snow accumulation of a metre or more within just twenty- four hours is not uncommon in Saas-Fee, but in turn the avalanche risk increases rapidly, especially in the high alpine terrain which makes up much of the resort. It often takes some time before the slopes can be secured against avalanches and reopened for winter\"The possibilities are limitless.\" Peter Novotny, Mountain Guide sports. Downdays such as these offer the perfect opportunity for a guided snowshoe tour (see page 34) or a Gorge Alpine adventure (see page 20). ON A DISCOVERY TOUR If you dread the idea of forgoing skiing or snowboarding, or can no longer sit tight and wait for those epic deep snow turns, you should try out one of Saas-Fee Guide’s Discovery Tours. Led by a highly-trained and certified mountain guide, it’s an unbeatable day out with local knowhow and insider tips included! The Land Rover Defender, our Saas-Fee Guides’ vehicle of choice, is undoubtedly the best option for going on a ‘Ski Safari’ - whatever the conditions. As 50-year-old mountain

guide and Saas-Fee native Peter BEYOND BOUNDARIES 29Novotny notes, \"the possibilities arelimitless\". He not only knows a myriad of GOOD TO KNOWoptions for freeriding at home, but also Curious? The highly-trained Saas-Feethat \"in heavy snowfall and poor visibility, Guides are happy to share their locals-those in the know can find innumerable only spots with clients so they can makebeautiful forest runs around the Simplon the most of the Saas Valley - and otherarea.\" With the Land Rover they can be areas close by.reached in less than an hour from Saas-Fee. The freeride Mecca of Verbier is Transport from Saas-Fee in the Landalso worth a day trip, as is Zermatt. It's Rover Defender and the services of thenot only in Saas-Fee that a powder day certified mountain guide are included incan be combined with lunch in a cozy the price. Any relevant lift tickets andlittle chalet. meals are not included. Prices start at CHF 35.- per person forSPRING HAS A LOT TO OFFER a day trip.The Saas Valley has a lot of freerideofferings. In both Saas-Grund and Saas- For more information:Fee, most can be reached through www.saasfeeguides.comaccessible ski areas which eitherentail no climb at all, or just a short [email protected]. \"Especially in spring, the snowconditions are excellent,\" says expert +41 27 957 44 64Peter Novotny. Saas-Fee Guides AGFronts of humid air from the south mean Obere Dorfstrasse 53that in Saas-Fee you can still find the 3906 Saas-Feefinest possible powder snow, even Switzerlandbelow the treeline, well into April andbeyond. Top left: The Saas-Fee Guides’ Land Rover Defender brings guests directly to the guide’s secret spots - both in and beyond the Saas Valley. Left middle: Most untracked slopes can be reached with just a short climb. Bottom left: Turns in the deep snow of Saas-Fee. Top right: In Saas-Fee, March and April typically bring the heaviest snowfalls. Bottom right: Even beyond the Saas Valley, the Saas-Fee Guides have some hidden gems up their sleeves.

30 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 THE BOUTIQUE HOTEL WITH THE FEELGOOD FACTOR Sunstar Boutique Hotel Beau-Site Saas-Fee | Tel. 027 958 15 60

BEYOND BOUNDARIES 31 MADNESSIN SAAS–FEE! SAVE easily CHF 1000.–Get your WinterCARD GOLD now! Saas-Fee | Saas-Grund | Saas-Almagell | Saas-Balen

32 GOLDEN MOMENTS Unforgettable sunrises at 3,500 metres above sea level and deserted slopes: all part of the package for WinterCARD Gold owners. But the advantages don’t end there. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore Left: ‘Special Virgin Skiing’ in Saas- Fee is one of many great offers for the 2017-18 winter season. Right: Golden moments at 3,500 metres: WinterCARD Gold holders get to experience sunrise at Mittelallalin for free.Last year, with the Saas- even leaving home; those arriving introduction of the Balen. by train can have their luggage picked WinterCARD in the Winter sports up from their place of residence and sentSaas Valley, a new era began enthusiasts can to their address in the Saas Valley, free offor winter sports lovers. The now enjoy a total of charge. For two pieces of luggage, thisthousand Swiss franc season ticket 150 kilometres of slopes. amounts to a saving of 128 francs. Then,suddenly cost just 222 francs. That is Thanks to the high altitude, open once in the Saas Valley, the WinterCARDto say that by the end of your fourth day runs back to the village are guaranteed Gold continues to pay off: offers includeon the slopes you had already got your from the beginning of December through a 50% discount on the rental of topmoney’s worth. Almost 75,000 people to the end of the season in mid-April, winter sports equipment, two hours oftook advantage of the WinterCARD making the WinterCARD a worthwhile private ski lessons for the price of one,deal and as a result the Saas-Fee investment. 50% discount at the Längfluh mountainBergbahnen’s profits shot up. The influx restaurant, and much more. In addition,of guests also boosted the services SAVE CHF 1'000.- IN A WEEK new offerings from the Hohsaasindustry, from the hotels and apartments In addition to the classic WinterCARD, Bergbahnen and Saastal Bergbahnen,to the restaurants and sports shops. That there is now a new WinterCARD Gold on such as guided downhill runs under theexplains the return of the WinterCARD offer. At 333 francs the Gold version offers light of the full moon, are available freefor winter 2017/2018. And now, the card a whole range of additional benefits. of charge for WinterCARD Gold holders.covers an even wider area: in addition Cardholders can see the benefits before In the duration of a one-week ski holiday,to Saas-Fee and Saas-Almagell ski purchasers of a WinterCARD Gold canresorts, the WinterCARD is also valid for easily save as much as 1000 SwissBergbahnen Hohsaas in Saas-Grund and francs.

GOLDEN MOMENTS 33THE COMPLETE LIST OF WINTERCARD GOLD BENEFITS→→ GUIDED FULL MOON SKIING On selected dates this winter season, the cable car companies of Saas-Fee and Saas-Grund are offering guided skiing under the light of the full moon. Equipped with headlamps, participants will experience an unforgettable descent on a bright moonlit night. Free for those in possession of a WinterCARD Gold. Further details and dates are to be confirmed by the cable car companies.→→ VIRGIN SKIING Would you like to get out on the slopes an hour earlier than everyone else? Saas-Fee has made it possible for winter 2017/2018. On 15 days between 27th December 2017 and 7th April 2018 (usually Wednesdays and Saturdays) either the Plattjen or Spielboden lifts will open as early as 7.30am. Early risers can expect to have the perfectly groomed slopes almost to themselves. For purchasers of the WinterCARD Gold this perk is free.→→ SPECIAL VIRGIN SKIING Sunrise at Mittelallalin is an unforgettable experience. In clear conditions, the night time view extends to the city lights of Milan. Then, the first sunbeams bathe the scenery in an orange-reddish hue. On at least five dates over the coming season, the Saastal Bergbahnen will make this unbelievable experience available to their guests with the lifts up to 3,500 metres switched on before sunrise. At Mittelallalin you will find coffee, croissants and an unparalleled view. Then as the first rays hit the mountain, the slopes will already be open for winter sports. Again, it’s absolutely free for WinterCARD Gold holders.→→ 50% DISCOUNT ON EQUIPMENT RENTAL If you like to feel the newest gear under your feet, you can save big with the WinterCARD Gold. Intersport Glacier in Saas-Fee and Fun Sport in Saas-Grund are granting a one-time 50% discount on equipment rentals of six or seven days, upon presentation of the WinterCARD Gold. That translates to a saving of up to approximately 100 Swiss francs.→→ TWO-FOR-ONE ON SKI LESSONS If you want to improve your riding skills, to do a spring ski tour with the Saas-Fee Guides for example, you can also benefit from the WinterCARD Gold. At the Swiss Ski Schools in Saas-Fee, Saas-Grund and Saas-Almagell, as well as at Optimum Snowsports, WinterCARD Gold owners will enjoy two hours of private lessons for the price of one, a saving of 80 Swiss francs.→→ 50% DISCOUNT AT PARTNER SKI RESORTS WinterCARD Gold holders get a 50% discount on the ticket price at a range of partner ski resorts.→→ ICE-PAVILION HALF PRICE The Ice Pavilion at Mittelallalin is one of the largest in the world. Deep inside the glacier visitors can enjoy beautiful sculptures and discover more about the age-old world of ice. Those in possession of a WinterCARD Gold pay just half of the regular price (10 instead of 20 Swiss francs).→→ FREE SBB LUGGAGE TRANSPORTATION To save you the trouble of carting around your luggage, the Swiss Railways (SBB) offer to deliver your bags from a place of residence (or arrival) to your hotel or apartment in the Saas Valley. The service is free of charge for WinterCARD Gold holders, and for two pieces of luggage that results in a saving of 128 Swiss francs.→→ 50% OFF THE LÖTSCHBERG CAR TRANSPORT SERVICE If you book your ticket online, buyers of the WinterCARD Gold will receive a one-time discount of 50% for a return journey with the Lötschberg car transport service. That corresponds to a saving of 29.50 Swiss francs.→→ 100 SWISS FRANCS DISCOUNT ON WINE & DINE OFFERS The WinterCARD Gold also benefits those who would like to be pampered with culinary delights. A 100 Swiss franc discount is available on the exquisite Wine & Dine offers from The Capra, Ferienart, and Schweizerhof Hotels in Saas-Fee.→→ HALF PRICE FONDUE EXPERIENCE IN THE SPIELBODEN CABLE CAR New for winter 2017/2018, the Saastal Bergbahnen will be offering their guests a fondue experience in the Spielboden cable car. Once or twice a week, the lift, which started turning in December 2016, will open in the evening. The ride, which normally costs 70 Swiss francs per person including fondue, is available for WinterCARD Gold holders for just 35 Swiss francs each.→→ HALF PRICE DAILY MENU IN THE LÄNGFLUH RESTAURANT The WinterCARD Gold also features a reduced price lunch break at the piste’s edge. The Längfluh restaurant, sitting at 2,800 metres above sea level, offers a magnificent view of the glacier world of Saas-Fee: throughout the winter season 2017/2018, WinterCARD Gold owners can enjoy the lunch menu at half price.→→ UP TO 50% OFF OVERNIGHT STAYS Keep an eye on the hotel reservation website: Free Republic of Holidays Saas-Fee’s official webstore regularly publishes special offers for WinterCARD Gold holders. Participating companies grant discounts of up to 50%.→→ THE SUMMER IS GOLDEN TOO Year-round skiing is possible on Saas-Fee’s glacier slopes. If you want to share the ski lift with stars like Lara Gut or international professional snowboarders like Marcus Kleveland in the summer, you will be able to get the most out of a WinterCARD Gold. There are also discounts on selected summer packages for the whole family. Up-to-date information about the WinterCARD Gold is available at

34 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018A PEACEFULWINTERWONDERLAND Snow-covered trees and wildlife: a Saas Valley snowshoe hike with local guides is a truly unique experience. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore Photo: Puzzle Media A picture is worth a thousand words.


36 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 W hen the marmots’ calls can no for an arduous summit or ski tour in order to longer be heard, enjoy the Saas Valley. \"If you're looking for when the forest animals have a relaxing excursion on your holiday, then retreated to their burrows, a snowshoe tour is just right for you,\" says you know that winter is on Aldo. its way. By November, a The concept is as old as time: greater blanket of white will have contact surface underfoot means a better settled over the Saas Valley. distribution of weight, which in turn prevents The autumnal shades of the sinking in deep snow. In 2003 in South larch forests will give way to Tyrol, military personnel discovered the a wintry fairytale landscape. oldest known snowshoe to date, with \"The tranquility of the woods laboratory tests revealing it to be almost is especially inspiring in 6000 years old. A flexed birch branch frame winter,\" says Aldo Lomatter. with branches tied across it ensured that The 63-year-old from Saas- Neolithic hikers did not sink when traversing Fee knows what he's talking the Alpine passes. about; as a mountain guide, Like the Neolithic hunter-gatherers before he has led hundreds of them, Aldo and his guests make their way guests to mountain summits. But you do not have to opt LEFT PAGE Top: The snowy forests of Saas-Fee... Centre: .....are perfect for snowshoe hikes. Bottom: With Snowshoeing you can recharge your batteries and get some exercise at the same time. RIGHT PAGE Top: What goes better with a snowshoe hike than fondue? Centre: Mountain guide Aldo Lomatter leads his guests through the woods. Bottom: Like a scene from a Lord Of The Rings movie.

unhurriedly through the snow. The A PEACEFUL WINTER WONDERLAND 37materials have changed significantlysince then; snowshoes with serrated restaurant, or the Hotel Capra’s lounge.treads provide the necessary grip, On request, the Saas-Fee Guides can alsoand they can easily be adapted to organize a cozy evening in a mountain hutthe wearer’s footwear. Saas-Fee for your group. What’s more, a snowshoeGuides AG provide their guests with hike by night is an unforgettable experience,both snowshoes and poles. With especially under a full moon.experienced guides like Aldo you willdiscover the best of the Saas Valley’s “The tranquility of thesnowy forests. With a little luck, woods is especiallychamois and other forest animals can inspiring in winter.”be spotted too. \"If you move calmly andquietly enough, you are sure to come Aldo Lomatter, Mountain Guide.across creatures in the forest,\" saysAldo.And what better way to top off aleisurely day in the wilderness thanwith a glass of wine by the fire? Greatoptions include 'dü', the homely fondue GOOD TO KNOW For a snowshoe tour you will need warm and functional winter clothing as well as good, sturdy footwear (hiking boots preferable). Snowshoes and poles are provided by Saas-Fee Guides AG. Prices start at CHF 35.- per person for a group tour. For more information: [email protected] +41 27 957 44 64 Saas-Fee Guides AG Obere Dorfstrasse 53 3906 Saas-Fee Switzerland


SAAS-FEEBOUTIQUE HOTELBAR & RESTAURANTSPAS&AWA SE-LFLENEESS THE CAPRA t: +41 27 958 13 58Lomattenstrasse 6 w: www.capra.chCH-3906 Saas-Fee e: [email protected]

40 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018GLOW IN THEDARK Hohsaas ski resort, above Saas-Grund, is now offering night-time and full moon skiing throughout the coming winter and the Saas-Fee Guides will leading the way in their unique LED Ski Suits. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore Main: Night Skiing with LED Suits in Saas-Fee. Top right: 160 LED modules turn night into day. Right centre: New for winter 2017-18: Full moon skiing from Hohsaas, above Saas- Grund. The Saas-Fee Guides and their LED Ski Suits will be there. Bottom right: A descent with the LED Ski Suits, from the Weismiess or Brittania Huts for example, is an ideal part of any evening programme.

H aving been inspired by Afterglow, a ski movie by North GLOW IN THE DARK 41 American production company Sweetgrass Productions, Peter Lawson, a freelance artist from London, originally developedthe LED Ski Suits, working alongside Reto Sporrer, managing director ofSaas-Fee Guides AG. The suits have over 160 LED modules distributedacross them; when worn they light the skiers’ path and provide theillumination required to ski the dark.Since 2014 they have made runs both on and off-piste possible in theSaas Valley. While six of the suits glow white, the mountain guide’sglows green, allowing for a unique offering; guided descents fromstart points such as the Britannia or Weissmies mountain huts at night.These excursions are especially suited for corporate or private eventsfor small groups in combination with a cozy evening in a mountain hut.UNFORGETTABLE EXPERIENCEFrom winter 2017/2018, Hohsaas Ski Resort, alongside the Saas-FeeGuides and their LED Ski Suits, will be offering something new; therewill be seven different options available for skiing, snowboarding andsledging by night (see information box). With their LED Ski Suits, theSaas-Fee Guides guarantee you will have an unforgettable experienceon the slopes under moonlight. GOOD TO KNOW The Saas-Fee Guides have six LED Ski Suits at their disposal for guest use. A night-time descent with a highly trained and certified mountain guide, following a cozy evening spent in a mountain hut, makes for a truly unforgettable experience. Ideal for smaller corporate or private events. Upon request, Saas- Fee Guides AG will also organise an evening in one of the mountain huts as well as a film or photoshoot with our partners in the Saas Valley. For more information: [email protected] +41 27 957 44 64 Saas-Fee Guides AG Obere Dorfstrasse 53 3906 Saas-Fee SwitzerlandHOHSAAS SKI RESORT EVENING ACTIVITIES ITINERARYFri. 29/12/2017 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night skiingWeds. 31/01/2018 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night skiing/Full-moon skiing from Hohsaas with Saas-Fee Guides' LED suitsWeds. 07/02/2018 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night sleddingWeds, 14/02/2018 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night sleddingWeds. 21/02/2018 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night sleddingWeds. 28/02/2018 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night sleddingWeds. 02/03/2018 6:30pm - 9:45pm Night skiing/Full-moon skiing from Hohsaas with Saas-Fee Guides' LED suits

Winterhighlight for families:Hohsaas Funslope From winter 2017/18, the winter Switzerland’s one and only Slopecop! Armed withparadise of Hohsaas has something The Funslope in Kreuz- a laser gun, he measures your speed and chimesvery special to offer snow sports en- boden is an innovative in with a lighthearted telling off. The fast-paced runthusiasts looking for a change from ski run boasting a va- continues and we soon arrive at the next feature: the corkscrew, where we spiral through a tunnel and the usual fun on the slopes. The riety of creative and set course for the final leap. Having conquered this, Hohsaas Funslope provides win- appealing features. As Hohsaas Funslope mascot Slopy congratulates us ter fun for the whole family with the name suggests, on making it to the finish line. The icing on the cake? its speedy waves, exciting banked fun in the snow is ab- Two integrated photo spots capture our finest mo- turns and other creative features. solutely central to the ments. Those with a competitive streak will be glad to hear that the Hohsaas Funslope is also part of the concept - for begin- Saas-Fee Adrenalin Cup. ners and experts alike! The new piste is accessed from and runs parallel to the Sandiger Boden button lift, and continues towards Kreuzboden.Like to go fast? We start with a speed boost, which With the Funslope, Bergahnen Hohsaas AG addsbrings us up to Funslope speed as we hurtle over an element of fun to its perfect pistes and stunninga quick succession of snowy waves and lively views. Surrounded by glaciers, the mountains glis-banked turns. Next, we high five the padded giant ten as Hohsaas’ sun-kissed location turns frostyhand and continue, re-invigorated, over more snow days into unforgettable skiing experiences. Morewaves, making a bee-line for a Hohsaas Funslope Info: Bergbahnen Hohsaas AG / 3910 Saas-Grund /highlight. This is where things really get serious, 027 958 15 80 / or this Hohsaas winter paradise housesHOHSAAS FUNSLOPENew Winterhighlight for families: Speedy Waves + Banked Turns, Fun Features

GLOW IN THE DARK 43Photo: Puzzle MediaSetting off from Brittania Hut the Fluchthorn(3399m) and Strahlhorn (4190m) await. \"Over every mountain there is apath, although it may not be seen from the valley.\" Theodore Roethke, Poet (1908-1963)

44 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 Main: The family found happiness in Saas-Fee: Dad, Michael Gade, with daughter Emilia, seven, Mama Pernille Schulze with Julia, seven and Gustav, nine. RIGHT PAGE Top left: The newly opened Café des Guides offers a calmer atmosphere. Top right and centre: Nesti's Skibar is a legendary meeting place for locals and guests alike.A DANISH LOVE STORYSeventeen years ago, seasonaires Michael Gade and Pernille Schulze met in Saas-Fee. Today they have threechildren together and as of last year, have taken over the running of the legendary Nesti's Ski Bar. This year thecouple also takes the helm at the neighbouring, and newly refurbished, Hotel Christiania. Photos: Puzzle Media together with his wife Pernille, will be seventeen years ago. Back then, he was Text: Patrick Gasser welcoming guests to the hotel and bar snowboarding in Saas-Fee, she worked Translation: Adam Spensley & Danielle Moore situated on Saas-Fee’s Dorfstrasse, behind the bar at Popcorn. Once the less than 5 minutes walk from the ski season was over, he lost contact withT he hotel has undergone slopes. The hotel offers large rooms, her, but three years later, Pernille sent extensive renovations; the walls accommodating two to six people, Michael a text message and the rest are freshly painted and chic which are not only perfect for families, is history. \"Pernille just fascinated me,\" wood supplies a warm charm. The new but also for groups of friends, couples, says Michael. They are now married with lounge, Café des Guides, on the first and single travellers. Meanwhile, the three children, seven-year-old twins Julia floor is the ideal spot in which to wind restaurant serves up a Scandinavian- and Emilia and Gustav, nine. down after a long and arduous ski tour inspired menu, harking back to the with fellow mountaineers. \"Even though couple’s mutual roots. FINALLY, TAKEAWAY-FOOD! the owners, Pirmin and Marlis Burgener, Last winter, Michael and Pernille have always made the necessary Last year’s return to Saas-Fee brought returned to Saas-Fee and took the renovations over the years, we wanted the couple back to the place they met our guests to be able to see that there was something new about Hotel Christiania,” says Michael. Throughout the 2017/18 winter season, the Dane,

A DANISH LOVE STORY 45reigns at the legendary Nesti's Ski want to stay here,\" declares Gustav. SoBar. In the bar, which is decorated who knows, perhaps Saas-Fee will soonwith memorabilia from former speed- be embracing its first Danish mountainski racer Nestor Burgener’s career, ski guide.instructors, lift company employees andholidaymakers alike gather to soothe Incredibly, almost three tonnes of meat GOOD TO KNOWthe day’s aches and pains and simply have passed over the counter since theto enjoy the warm, lively, atmosphere. dish launched. This winter, Nesti's is also HOTEL CHRISTIANIAIt makes the ideal setting for telling cooking up pulled pork burgers as well Hotel Christiania is located directlyheroic tales of adventure and setting as Thai curry. Food Corner boasts its above the Nesti's Ski Bar, just a twothe world to rights over a beer or two. own entrance which has been improved minute walk from the village square.The new owners reduced the price for this season to ensure that customers A one-night stay in a family room isof drinks by twenty percent, meaning will be able to refuel quickly beside the available from 270 Swiss francs, ayou can now get a half-litre stein of jam-packed bar. double room from 85 francs a night andbeer for just 6.50 Swiss francs. As a single room from 90 francs. All roomsresult, the bar’s turnover has rocketed; \"Pernille just fascinated are spacious and comfortably furnished.\"Lower prices mean more people in me.\"the bar. That encourages sales,\" says ROOM PRICESPernille, who is currently working on Michael Gade, Hotelier →→ Family room from CHF 270.-her Leadership Management doctorate →→ Double room formin Denmark. One thing the Danes had LET THE KIDS DECIDE CHF 85.- per personalways been interested in was serving Michael used to build industrial pipelines →→ Single room from CHF 90.-food to take away, leading them to offer for geothermal power plants: “excitingdöner kebabs (finally!) at Nesti’s. As the work”, he remarks. The post took him to CAFÉ DES GUIDESonly place to get them in the village, various places around the world, seeing In the newly renovated restaurant youthe kebabs not only appeal to the bar’s countries like Greenland, which few will find vegetarian and vegan dishespatrons, but also hungry (Après-) skiers. others will ever get the opportunity to on the menu, amongst more typical experience. But that lifestyle didn’t leave offerings such as chicken and burgers. much time for family: \"I’d often have We have a special menu tailored to the to leave home on a Monday morning little ones. and only arrive back on a Friday night,\" explains Michael. Sometimes the job →→ Vegetarian und Vegan food took him away from his family for several →→ Café des Guides Burgers weeks on end. \"I didn’t get to see Gustav →→ Brunch taking his first steps. No father wants →→ Chicken specials that,\" laments Michael, pointing out that →→ Special kids menu that is what prompted the family to make a change. The move to Saas-Fee was NESTI’S SKI BAR TAKE AWAY not easy, especially for the children; After a successful start, the team behind they had to leave behind their friends Nesti's Ski Bar has decided to expand in Denmark. \"We have told the children its take away offer. Enjoy the new pulled that after a year they can decide whether pork burgers for 12 francs and Thai we want to stay here or go back.\" And curry for 10 francs. As ever, they will be the Gade kids seem to have gotten used offering theirr signature dürüm kebabs to the long road trips back to Denmark. for 12 francs. Between the Youth Ski Association and →→ Pulled Pork Burger CHF 12.- school, they have already made plenty of →→ Durum Kebab CHF 12.- friends. The children have decided… \"We →→ Thai Curry CHF 10.- For more information: [email protected] +41 27 957 31 66 Hotel Christiania Dorfstrasse 19 Postfach 107 3906 Saas-Fee Switzerland

46 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018HABITS ARECHANGING BUTTHE RISK REMAINSAvalanches are not unavoidable. With the right knowledge,winter sports enthusiasts can minimise the risks that comewith venturing off-piste. Experts from the International SnowTraining Academy pass on their knowledge in Saas-Fee.Photos: Puzzle MediaText: Patrick GasserTranslation: Adam Spensley & Danielle MooreI n the last few years, winter sports gear has undergone ADVANTAGE SCHEME AND CERTIFICATES significant changes. The modern preference for wider This international programme for disseminating vital avalanche skis - which float better in the deeper snow found off- knowledge is aimed at winter sports enthusiasts who explorepiste - means that powder skiing has become far easier for the the backcountry. More than forty highly trained mountainless experienced winter sports enthusiast. At the same time, guides from nine different countries across a total of threeavalanche transceivers have become easier to operate and continents came together to develop the training courses. Theavalanche backpacks have become commonplace, making courses take a tiered approach to instruction, tailoring it toventuring out of bounds feel easier and safer to the uninitiated. individual abilities. Classes are supported by teaching aids inIn an emergency, avalanche backpacks release an air cushion, the form of illustrated books which are all available in German,helping you remain on the snow’s surface and preventing you English, French and Italian. ISTA values its role in building anfrom being buried under metres of the white stuff. Neither, international community which fosters an active exchangehowever, is any guarantee of safety. The best way to stay of knowledge. On completion of the courses, participantssafe off-piste is simply to possess the right knowledge. This receive a certificate which gives them access to an attractiveis where International Snow Training Academy (ISTA) courses advantage scheme which entitles members to special offerscome into their own. on travel, sports equipment and other tourist services.

HABITS ARE CHANGING BUT THE RISK REMAINS 47GOOD TO KNOW Main: Participants in PROUD MEMBER OF ISTAISTA-course with fully certified Mountan an ISTA course learn, Saas-Fee Guides is proud to offerGuide from Saas-Fee Guides AG among other things, to these essential courses, which areavailable from CHF 320.- per Person. read the structure of the run in collaboration with the Swiss snowpack and to make Ski School Saas-Fee. Up-to-dateFor more information: appropriate and correct information can be found on the decisions as a result. Guides’ website. No prior expertise [email protected] or specialist knowledge is required to +41 27 957 44 64 RIGHT PAGE partake in an ISTA-certified beginners Saas-Fee Guides AG Top: The International course; this ensures that young Obere Dorfstrasse 53 people also have the opportunity to 3906 Saas-Fee Snow Training Acad- learn how to venture off-piste safely. Switzerland emy (ISTA) is an inter- The courses cover a range of content including how to correctly handle and national programme. operate specialist kit because, after [email protected] Graduates will benefit all, even the most modern avalanche +41 79 385 02 20 transceiver can only be of use in an Safe Mountain SA from the advantage emergency if the user is well-practised Route de Cojonnex 18 scheme worldwide. and proficient. Most importantly, 1000 Lausanne Bottom left: Partici- the courses are designed to teach Switzerland pants train in the proper participants how to recognise danger use of avalanche rescue signs and read snow conditions. equipment. Bottom right: Nat- urally, the practical side of ISTA courses is held outdoors in the snow, but knowledge is reinforced with easily understood textbooks and in theory lessons.

48 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 CHAMPAGNE Fresh tracks in perfect powder snow: a dream for most advanced riders. Saas-Fee Guides AG can make it come true. The world's fastest ski lift takes you up to powder heaven. Photos: Puzzle Media Text: Patrick Gasser Translation: Jamie Mullner

CHAMPAGNE 49Photo: A helicopter lands in the Lötschental.

50 SAAS-FEE GUIDES . WINTER 2018 Photo: Perfect snow conditions on the de- scent from Alphubeljoch.I n Raron, the first flowers of spring have emerged. The the group. Michi, who has led mountain tours and skied the village is carpeted in lush green, and the morning sun world over, is responsible for the safety of the group. He kisses the surrounding mountains, tinting the snow- gives a final briefing on the avalanche rescue equipmentcovered peaks orange. The mechanic is about to retrieve and assists everyone into their harnesses. The pilot chatsthe Eurocopter from the hanger. Pilot Samuel Summermatter to the group as they get ready: “This is a day you will neverhelps to prepare the helicopter, and following the necessary forget,” he remarks cheerfully.checks, the two experienced Valais locals ready themachine. “What a day,” exclaims Samuel. Thirty centimetres Nine o’clock. The group is ready to take off. Departingof snow has already fallen since the previous day, but the from Raron, which is situated at around 630 metres aboveweather has cleared and the sky now looks idyllic. sea level, Samuel navigates the helicopter up the valley, higher and higher. Richard, Peter, and Jamie are in awe ofA DAY YOU WILL NEVER FORGET the breathtaking, scenery. Taking in the panoramic viewsToday brings perfect conditions for Jamie, Peter, Richard of the 4,000 metre high peaks of the Mischabel rangeand Elisa. For the four passionate skiers from Southampton, and snow-covered glaciers, Elisa is rendered completelyUK. It’s a big day: their first time heli-skiing, in fact, their first speechless. The spring flowers and green slopes down intime ever in a helicopter. “I am a little nervous. I woke up at Raron seem a long way away. It’s a short ten minute flightfour o’clock this morning and couldn’t get back to sleep,” to their destination, the Alphubeljoch. The pilot sets thesays thirty-two-year-old Peter. He and his soon-to-be wife helicopter down gently at the drop point, situated at 3,700Elisa, thirty-one, were invited on the trip by long-time friends metres. “We’re here! Have a great day,” says Samuel. GuideJamie and Richard. Forty-nine-year-old Michi Schwarzl, a Michi opens the door and gets out first. He pulls the skisprofessional mountain guide from Saas-Fee, accompanies out of their hold while the four friends follow behind him.

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