Freeride Beneath the Matterhorn : Zermatt's King Lines

20 gorgeous freeride descents above the most famous Swiss mountain town of them all.

Charlie Boscoe



Roccia Nera 001

by Franco56

Licence Free



Zermatt is a charming little alpine village and its huge lift system quickly whisks you to over 3800 metres. Add in reliable snow conditions and the legendary views of the Matterhorn and the town becomes one of the most appealing ski destinations in the World.

In summer the town is known for its wonderful hiking and mountaineering, but in winter it transforms into a snow sports mecca, with something for every skier, from piste skiing newbie to hardcore freerider. This guidebook is aimed more towards the latter category but there are plenty of lines in here for those who enjoy stress-free powder skiing down mellow bowls. The undoubted jewel in Zermatt's skiing crown is the Schwarztor run, and while it's not strictly a lift-accessed freeride (you have to either skin briefly or put in a tough shift of sidestepping to reach it) it's such a good and famous run that we couldn't exclude it.

At the opposite end of the scale from the big mountain seriousness of the Schwarztor you'll find some short, mellow lines in here and everything in between.

If you're still hungry for more after working your way through this lot, drop over the ridge into Cervinia and get started on these routes -


Furggen ridge

A nice freeride line that requires a short hike but you'll be well rewarded by the breathtaking landscape


An amazing mountain journey through complex glaciers with stunning views of the Matterhorn

Grieschumme 32

The varied bottom section to the Triftji ski area. Boasts some great short pitches and some traverses to take you back to the main ski area.

Mittelritze 30

A run for mogul-lovers with pitch after pitch of bumps to get your legs burning!

Grünsee Couloir 97

A famous off piste route which is prone to avalanches (so check conditions first).

Gornergrat 100

A serious route but with fantastic snow in the right conditions

Riffelberg 91

A steep gully down the valley directly below Riffelberg

Marmotte 17

A short traverse through rolling terrain which leads to great skiing on a long and sustained slope.

Chamois 16

The front of the Rothorn face which features a variety of gullies and ridges to play around on - just don't stray too far left of the poles as the aspect changes to South.

Paradise 10

A great bump run, with a variety of pitches and small transitions

Garten Bukelpiste 67

An easily accessible and relatively easy off-piste route with small and medium bumps and some fresh snow around on the sides!

Hörnli 99

Open face pitches with the Matterhorn above you.

Triefbach 59

A short fun line taking a gully through playful terrain.

Momatt 60

A fun tree run with a variety of terrain to play on. You will want to do it again as soon as you have finished!

Hermetji 58

A varied and challenging off piste route, with some diverse conditions. It's sunny, treelined and quick to access

Moos 43

A fun alternative route to the village from Blatten (50) but with some challenging steep, bumpy sections


A long variation to the Mittelritze 30 that is fun and flowy.