Andermatt Ski Explorer

​Andermatt is a natural centre for off piste skiing and ski touring. With a reliably impressive snowfall each year and a vast choice of uplift it is no wonder that it is rated by enthusiasts as one of the best off-piste venues in the Alps, yet it is never too crowded.

Level 2 Guiding & Coaching

5 days, 6 nights

Price: £1245*

* Fully inclusive price

 Course Dates

The jewel of the area is the Gemstock which goes almost up to 3000m. This fantastic off-piste resort is comparable to the Grandes Montets in Chamonix but without the crowds. The runs are mainly north-facing, which means that there is normally plenty of powder for all.

Course Highlights

  • Combines some of the best off-piste skiing and day ski touring the Alps has to offer
  • North facing slopes with miles of untracked powder
  • Great lift access and extremely comfortable hotel and hut accommodation

The terrain in this region is very complex and the same lift can give access to a great selection of different off-piste ski runs which are well away from any piste. In fact it is common to ski well away from the lift system and use a train to make the short return journey back to Andermatt.

THE COURSE CONVENES IN ANDERMATT and we stay at the very comfortable Hotel Badus which is named after the peak that we climb at the end of the week. Andermatt has retained its character as an ancient, traditional Swiss village. The village is mainly constructed of the local granite stone which gives it a unique ambience.

Other ski resorts close to Andermatt are the villages of Sedrun, Disentis and Oberalp. These are accessible using the Andermatt ski pass, giving huge scope for off piste skiing and ski touring in this region.

Is This Course For Me?

Ski ability required: Strong piste skier with good parallel turns on piste with effective and comfortable turns off-piste. No ski touring experience necessary. You need to have a good level of fitness and be able to comfortably sustain a climb at a rate of 300 vertical metres an hour. A typical touring day will involve 4 hours of ascent, but the lift assisted off piste days will need minimum walking up hill. Uplift will be used as much as possible.

More information on Andermatt can be found here.

Course Description

The aim of the week is to improve your off piste ski technique whilst enjoying some of the best off-piste runs the Alps has to offer, and to explore the mountains of this fascinating area (which form the watershed between the Rhone and the Rhine).

This course would suit the more experienced off piste skier. There will be a strong emphasis on ski technique especially early on in the week as this will give you points to focus on when ripping up the powder! We begin with an instructional day where your ski technique both on and off-piste will be analysed by our guide. This will give each participant technical points to focus on during the varied programme of the following four days, when we ski a fantastic choice of venues.

Sample Programme

Day 1
An instructional day on and off-piste skiing on the Gemstock. The pistes of the Gemstock are wide enough to have plenty of space to work on ski technique, but are still dwarfed by the neighbouring powder fields. We will work on ski technique in a variety of different terrains, which will give us an important foundation to build on skills during the rest of the week. There is also plenty of off piste to dive into, so that we get plenty of feedback from the techniques being taught. We shall also have a session on the transceiver training where we learn essentials skills on how to rescue an avalanched victim..

Day 2
A day to explore further the joys of the Gemstock. The Felsental, Unteralp and Guspi valleys are just some of the off piste options available to us. With 1500m of descent on each run, we quickly rack up the vertical descent. The descent to Hospental is a real classic and involves a short train journey back to Andermatt. It is also possible to do some short tours from the Gemstock and climb peaks such as Peak Centrale.
This is a perfect place to consolidate the ski lessons from the first day.

Day 3
We take a train over the Oberalp pass to Disentis. The Ascent of the Oberalpstock (3300m) is an absolute classic. From Disentis we take the lifts to the highest point and then skirt east until we have to tackle a short rocky scamble over some 'ladders'. A short ski down takes us on to the Brunnifirn far away from the crowds. A three hour skin leads to the summit of the Oberalpstock. From here we descend one of the best ski descents in the region giving 2km vertical descent on perfectly angled ski pitches.

Day 4
Time to head into the high mountains - to the Maighels hut to be precise. This is a very modern and comfortable hut. We leave the Oberalp pass and climb the Paxolastock (2700m 3hrs).

From here we descend south east in a wonderful hidden valley to the junction of the normal way to the hut. Another easy hour takes us to the hut. An ascent of the Piz Cavradi (2600m,1hr) can be made just above the hut if time and conditions allow.

Day 5
This is a fitting finale to the week with a traverse of Badus (2900m, 3hrs ascent). The summit ridge is a fantastic easy scramble on which we carry our skis. The descent on the other side takes us to Lac da Tuma and we skin up another 300m to a col which enables us to ski north westwards back to Andermatt.

Depending on the conditions for the week the days will be interchanged to make the most of the snow.

Maps: Nufenenpass 265 s 1:50 000 and Sustenpass 255 s 1:50 000 Disentis/Muster 256s 1:50 000

Course Dates

Week Start Finish Price  
10 5 Mar 2017 11 Mar 2017 £1245