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2-day Snowshoe Winter Tour Planning Course in Simplon

You love snowshoeing and would like to start doing tours outside of the pink-marked paths where hundreds of people have left tracks before you, but you don’t feel confident enough to go off track? Then this event is for you!

The Simplon Pass links Brig in Valais with Domodossola in Northern Italy. This pass was used as early as the Stone Age, though until the 17th century it was mainly traversed by smugglers and mercenaries as the narrow Gondo Gorge was considered impassable. The first pass road suitable for vehicular traffic dates back to the time of Napoleon, who wanted to travel southward with his cannons. Over a hundred years later, in 1906, the railway tunnel through the Simplon was opened. At a length of 19km it was until recently the longest tunnel in the world.

At 2005m, on the summit of the pass, stands the Hospice of the Bernardine monks. An eight-meter-high stone eagle reminds visitors of World War II. Looking toward the back, one sees the magnificent panorama of the Bernese Alps with the Bietschhorn and the glacier flanks of the four-thousand-meter giants Fletschhorn and Weissmies.

This area is heaven for snowshoeing and ski touring!

This trip is led by Celine Kahn and Aurélie Bouquin, mountain leaders.

Winter tour planning

What’s the plan?

Saturday

We meet at Simplon Pass at 11:00. We will spend some time outside around the hospice, observing our terrain for next day’s tour, learning tricks about the snowpack, avalanches, navigation, etc. We will then sit inside and start our tour planning for Sunday. Under the guidance of the mountain leader, you will make the entire tour planning using the 3×3 method. Dinner and night in a charming hotel in Simplon Dorf.

Sunday

After an energising breakfast at the hotel, we get ready for a beautiful day in the snow, where the participants will take turns to guide the group, under the supervision of the mountain leader. Rocks, peaks, glistening snow slopes, unobstructed views and a breathtaking panorama await us on this beautiful tour! Return to the hospice at the end of the day so that everyone can catch a train back home.

At the end of this weekend, you will be able to:

  • Plan a winter tour outside of the marked paths, using the 3×3 method
  • Read, understand and interpret the weather forecast and avalanche bulletin
  • Read and understand topographical maps
  • Use planning tools like WhiteRisk or the SAC route portal
  • Understand and apply the graphical reduction method
  • Use your compass to navigate with low visibility

Requirements

To join this event, you need to be a fit hiker, ideally with previous snowshoeing experience.

Insurance

It is the participant’s responsibility to get health and accident insurances that cover mountain rescue, including extreme sports. Becoming a Rega patron is highly recommended (CHF 40 per year only for emergency medical assistance from the air).

How to get there

If you are traveling from Zurich by public transport, we recommend you to take the following:

  • Zurich HB 08:02 – 10:55 Simplon Hospiz, Hospiz (via Brig)
  • Simplon Hospiz, Hospiz 15:46 – 18:58 Zurich HB (via Brig) – depending on the time the event finishes

Kit list

Day Clothing Essentials

  • Winter hiking boots
  • Base layers
  • Hiking or skiing trousers
  • Fleece
  • Down jacket
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Sun hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Warm hat
  • Buff
  • Thin gloves
  • Thick gloves

Night Essentials

  • Lightweight towel
  • Headlamp with spare batteries
  • Ear plugs

Technical gear

  • Hiking backpack (30-40L)
  • Waterproof backpack cover
  • Waterproof inner bags or bin bags
  • Laptop or tablet for tour planning
  • Notebook and pen and/or pencil
  • Snowshoes and poles: can be rented out – see “Equipment rental”
  • Avalanche set: transceiver, probe and shovel: can be rented out – see “Equipment rental”
  • Compass: can be rented out – see “Equipment rental”

F&B

  • Water
  • Thermal bottle for tea
  • Snacks
  • Packed lunches

Pharmacy

  • Sunscreen and lip protector
  • Plasters and basic medicine

Equipment rental

You have the possibility to rent the following equipment, directly from the guide:

  • Snowshoes and poles: CHF 30
  • Avalanche transceiver, shovel and probe: CHF 50
  • Compass: CHF 10

Pricing

The price for this event is CHF 400.

Included in price

  • 2 days of snowshoe winter tour planning course with a mountain leader, in a small group (max. 8 participants and 2 mountain leaders if 6 or more)
  • 1 night of accommodation (twin rooms)
  • Topographical maps of the area
  • Dinner on Saturday
  • Breakfast on Sunday

Not included in price

  • Transport to / from Simplon Hospiz and bus between Simplon Hospiz and Simplon Dorf
  • Packed lunches
  • Drinks & snacks
  • Equipment rental

Group size

  • Min. 4 participants
  • Max. 8 participants

By signing up for this event, you agree that you have read, understood and will adhere to our Terms and Conditions.

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2-day snowshoe winter tour planning course in Simplon
CHF 400
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Date

04 - 05 Mar 2023

Time

11:00 am - 3:45 pm

Cost

CHF 400.00

Location

Simplon Pass
Simplon Pass, Simplon, Switzerland

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