Alphubel, 4206m via East Flank

Saas Fee

The Mischabel Range

A long but relatively steady ascent up a big remote glacial peak, with great views of the giant Weisshorn nearby.

Ski Touring Severe

Distance
7.6 km
Ascent
1.3 km
Descent
1.3 km
Duration
5-6 hrs
Low Point
2.9 km
High Point
4.2 km
Gradient
41˚
VIEW ON MAP
Alphubel, 4206m via East Flank Map

Description

With its characteristic flat top, Alphubel, 4206m, is easily recognisable from a distance. It is slightly higher than your previous 2 summits, if you are following our Allalinhorn, Weissmies itinerary, but you should be acclimatising by now. It is a particularly fine location for a peak on the Saas/Zermatt watershed, immediately next to the bulk of the Taschhorn, with so many other enormous peaks all around too.

Take the lifts to Langfluh (indeed you could even stay at the Langfluh Hotel if you were feeling the need for some expensive acclimatisation). The route up takes a reasonably obvious line, up the N facing glacier, though the exact line varies from season to season, and there are a few variations. On the upper section of the route you take a wide arc out to the L to avoid the worst of the crevasses, before heading back R to the steepening below the summit plateau. Descent is the same in reverse. It is particularly crevassed in summer, so bear this in mind when you ski down, keeping a good control of your speed and keeping your eye out for any tell tale depressions n the snowpack, which might indicate a weak snow bridge.

At the end of the day, to continue to the Britannia Hut, you need to get the Felskinn lift then follow the obvious track to the hut in 45 mins, to continue the following itineraries of the Fluchthorn and the Strahlhorn.

Difficulty

Severe

Steep skiing at 38-45 degrees. This requires very good technique and the risk of falling has serious consequences.

Medium Exposure (E2)

2 out of 4

As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.

Remoteness

4 out of 4

In the high mountains or remote conditions, all individuals must be completely autonomous in every situation.

Best time to visit

March, April, May, June

Features

  • Alpine
  • Cliffs
  • Ski Safari
  • Single Descent
  • Ski Mountaineering

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Ice axe
  • Crampons

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area