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The piz gloria restaurant earned fame as one of james bond’s most stunning sets.(Photos: Switzerland Tourism Board)
The world’s most beautiful ski commute: the cog railway train stops at kleine scheidegg before tunneling through the eiger to europe’s highest rail station.
The two must-ski (as in, once-in-a-lifetime-must-ski) trails at Wengen are the men’s and women’s World Cup downhills, venerable classics. The women’s Tschuggen/Aspen downhill is virtually all easy, rolling advanced intermediate terrain, allowing wide sweeping turns all the way down from the Honegg lift virtually into Grindelwald. The best way to ski the Lauberhorn, rich in downhill history and by far the longest course on the circuit, is on Thursday when a former World Cup racer escorts recreational skiers down the course. The last schuss ends in Wengen. This winter’s Lauberhorn race is on Jan. 16. Wengen’s best open-slope skiing is on the Männlichen.
Jungfrau Region lifts and cog railways access a total of 118 miles of upper-intermediate, frequently groomed terrain, reaching the village of Grindelwald and a whole other ski area, called First. At the other extremity of the Jungfrau Region, which is served by a common lift pass, Mürren has slopes that are shorter, intercepted by cliffs and nature zones. A good advanced run, however, is from the Piz Gloria to the bottom of the Muttleren lift. Best intermediate skiing is off the lifts above Winteregg, where you can lunch superbly on a sunbathed outdoor deck. Both Mürren and Wengen offer good off-piste deep snow skiing and helicopter glacier skiing when conditions allow. Wengen has a halfpipe and terrain park, and there’s excellent cross-country skiing in the Lauterbrunnen Valley.
Après-ski choices are abundant, with bars and outdoor decks the first gathering point. For both social and on-mountain advantages, a good way to ski Wengen is to join Britain’s Downhill Only Ski Club on arrival.
In the Land of the Jungfrau
In the land of the JungFrau: Almanac