Meet: 8:45 at the Grindelwald Sports Shop in the center of Grindelwald
Choose your hike on the day in consultation with your guide and according to the weather and your level of fitness. The terrain varies between gravel and rocky to packed dirt trails, and there is an elevation difference of between 1200 and 2200 ft, either up or down, depending on which hike is selected on the day.
The Panorama Trail Hike
The Panoramic Hike is a medium level hike that offers the best views of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau mountain peaks on a 4-hour trail over a distance of 8 miles with an elevation change of 700 ft up and 1800 ft down.
After meeting your guide, relax and enjoy a scenic 30 minute gondola ride to the First summit at 2158 m/6500 ftand enjoy views over the beautiful Bachalp lake. Start your hike by walking up to a summit above the tree-line where you are rewarded with magnificent views, seemingly at eye-level, of the famous Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau mountain peaks. Cows will be grazing peacefully in all weather out on their summer pastures. Enjoy the sounds of their bells while inhaling the incredible Swiss Alps environment. After descending by foot across green pastures, board a local Post Bus for a 30 minute ride back to Grindelwald.
The Eiger Trail Hike
The Eiger Trail is a more challenging hike but completely doable and safe and offers stunning views of the Eiger. You walk at the base of the Eiger peak and look up to its 6,000 ft vertical wall, one of the world’s toughest mountains to climb. It takes 3-4 hours total hiking time over a 4 mile distance, and depending on which way you do this hike, it’s either 2200 ft up or 2200 ft down.
After meeting your guide, board the train in Grindelwald that takes you up to the start of the hike, either at 4800 ft (1615 m) or 7000 ft (2320 m) depending on which direction you decide to hike.
The advantage of hiking up is that you can at the end reward yourself with refreshments at the famous Eigergletscher Restaurant with its direct views over the Jungfrau and Mönch glaciers. But if you feel unsure about hiking up, then the trail going down is much easier and just as spectacular.
No matter which way you hike the Eiger Trail, it’s a classic and you walk in the footsteps of those who have climbed the 6000 vertical feet of the North Face of the Eiger.
For those of you who enjoy reading up in advance of your hike – there are many fascinating books about the Eiger. One of our favorites is “The Eiger Obsession”, by John Harlin III. Read how in 1966 his father, John Harlin II, a Stanford University graduate, former Los Altos/CA resident, focused his energies on climbing straight up the Eiger trailblazing what is known as the “Harlin Route” and which is today one of the classic Eiger climbing routes.
The Glacier Walk
The Glacier Walk is very scenic even when the weather is not ideal. It takes about 3 hours total hiking time over a distance of 6 miles with an elevation change of 1200 ft up and 1200 ft down.
Way back in 1751 a traveler, Johann Altman, wrote: “As soon as you entered the village of Grindelwald you encountered two large glaciers”. Sadly today these glaciers have receded back into the mountain peaks. However on this hike up the Glacier gorge, you will see where the glacier begins and be awestruck by its beauty. And even if the rest of the Jungfrau region is overcast, you will still see jagged alpine slopes and continue to experience the pristine Jungfrau region landscapes.
Meet up with your guide and then take a 10 minute cable car ride to the start of the trail at 4200 ft (1391 m). Follow a signposted trail on narrow stone paths to an Alpine restaurant at 5400 ft (1772 m) with awesome views of the Grindelwald glacier.