Swiss Running Weekends
Our Swiss weekends are designed for regular trail runners wanting to explore a quiet and stunning corner of the Alps. Join like-minded people and run in the heart of Swiss Alps. We base these weekends in the quiet Zinal valley in the beautiful Valais region, which offers an excellent variety of running trails with unforgettable views.
The route choices are truly endless. We run through traditional Swiss alpine villages, lush high meadows, reach peaks, mountain lakes and high passes whilst surrounded by sublime scenery. One of our 'must do' routes is the region's classic high balcony traverse which is part of the historic 'Sierre-Zinal' trail race.
- Accommodation at Chalet Edelweiss - all en suite
- All meals and drinks included
- Guided trail running
- Option of a 3 or 4 night stay
- Free 'Access Pass'
This weekend will not only boost your training and fitness levels but also your love for the mountains!
Free Access Pass
For stays of 3 days or more the Access Pass gives you free use of the mountain cable cars and funiculars, buses, tennis courts, open air pool in Vercorin, and the newly refurbished Zinal swimming pool/spa and all other amenities.
|Trip||Departure date||End date||Price||Status|
|STR 1||Wed 19 June 13||Sat 22 June 13||£565||Places available | Make a Booking|
|STR 1A||Wed 19 June 13||Sun 23 June 13||£645||Places available | Make a Booking|
|STR 2||Wed 7 August 13||Sat 10 August 13||£565||Places available | Make a Booking|
|STR 2A||Wed 7 August 13||Sun 11 August 13||£645||Places available | Make a Booking|
|STR 3||Wed 25 September 13||Sat 28 September 13||£565||Places available | Make a Booking|
|STR 3A||Wed 25 September 13||Sun 29 September 13||£645||Places available | Make a Booking|
The Race of Five 4000 Peaks
The 'Sierre - Zinal' (11th August 2013, 40th edition), also called the Race of Five 4000m Peaks (due to seeing them - and not going over them!), is considered to be one of the finest mountain races in the world. It was once written that it is to mountain races what the New York Marathon is to marathons. It is the oldest mountain race found in its category in Europe's mountains. It offers its participants a significant challenge: 31 km, 2200m ascent and 800m descent. Incredible scenery, a warm atmosphere and exceptional organisation.
Our August dates for our Swiss weekends allow participants to watch or even enter this amazing event.
Off-road 'trail running' has grown in popularity in recent years so we have designed this weekend for runners wanting to escape to the fresh air of the Valais Alps. We run on a variety of trails that offer stunning views and a mixture of terrain, height, distance and altitude.
The running routes are designed to be carried out steadily over a day with both some horizontal distance and ascent involved. We each will run carrying a small rucksack with the necessary items to keep up safe, fed and warm in case of changeable weather conditions. The routes choices are flexible and can easily be adapted to suit our groups requirements and the weather conditions at the time. Our 'Free Access Pass' gives us plenty of flexibility with use of valley's public transport.
Day 1 Arrival to Chalet Edelweiss, Zinal Valley - 1556m
Chalet Edelweiss, in the peaceful French-speaking village of Mottec, 1556m, is at the head of the Zinal valley. This exclusive chalet has views that will simply inspire you to want to run! On this evening you will be met by your running guide, who is also a qualified International Mountain Leader, to go over the days ahead.
Day 2 St. Luc to Zinal - 2400m
We use the St.Luc funicular railway to join the high balcony trail of the Sierre-Zinal mountain race course. The trail sits at approximately 2000m and undulates up and down to 2400m, we run past the historic Hotel Edelweiss (with time for a brew to enjoy the scenery) and continue on a linear traverse, keeping height until the end where we descend into Zinal village itself at 1600m. A great way to acclimitise with superb views. We then have options for more exploring or to run straight back to our accommodation. Distance: 16km undulating terrain Descent: 500m.
Day 3 Lac de Moiry and Lac Autannes - 2686m
We take the bus from Mottec up a winding road to the impressive Moiry Dam where the light of the water and surrounding mountains create a fabulous amphitheatre setting. From here we have many route choices available to us. We plan to run/hike to the Alpage Torrent, 2481m, which is a traditional high 'summer meadow' and then onto the Lac Autannes at 2686m where we can enjoy our lunch and even a swim! Distance: 10km, with 440m ascent/descent.
Day 4 Cabane and Col des Becs de Bosson - 2983m
We start our final run from the picturesque 'chocolate box' Swiss village of Grimentz. We use the Bendolla ski lift to help us gain height to above 2100m. From here we take mountain trails climbing up to first reach the Col des Bec de Bosson, 2942m and then onto the mountain hut of the same name known as the 'Cabane'. We stop for lunch here at 2983m to enjoy superb 360 degree views of the Alps and on a clear day it's possible to even see Mont Blanc in France. We then return back to Grimentz via the Pas de Lorna. You may wish to treat yourself to a relaxing massage to complete your weekend away. Please note this is not included in the trip price but can be arranged for you. Distance: 12km, with 900m ascent/descent.
Day 5 Departure Day
Today is departure day and the package finishes after breakfast. Please note that there is the option to have a 3 night stay and leave on the Saturday evening.
Price: 3 x nights £565/675€ OR 4 x nights £645/775€
We will be staying with Eric and Penny at the lovely Chalet Edelweiss.
Included: Full board, en-suite accommodation based on two people sharing in a catered chalet. To include breakfast, packed lunch, 3 course evening meal with soft drinks, wine or beer. An International Mountain Leader to guide 3 runs, their expenses and a Free Access Pass to the valley's local transport and amenities
Not included: Flights, airport transfers, sports massage, insurance and drinks out of the accommodation.
This week will run once a minimum number of 4 clients have booked, we will take a maximum of 10.
Upon booking a full kit list will be provided. We intend to deliver the stated itinerary but due to changing mountain weather conditions we ask you stay flexible so that we can get the most out of each day.
If you would like to join our August dates that coincide with the Sierre-Zinal trail race and would like to take part then please ask for more details on how to enter or visit the Sierre-Zinal Race website.
Want more? Then why not extend your trip to a full week. The Val d'Annivers has plenty to offer such as: Via Ferrata in Grimentz, tandem paragliding from Zinal, walks/runs to other corners of the valley, bungy jumping, vineyard tours in the Valais, mountain and downhill biking or simply relax and enjoy a spa afternoon at Hotel Bella Tola in St Luc.
Guided Trail Running & Training
Our coaches are experienced in racing many sporting distances and disciplines. As well as our Trail Running Camps and guided runs along the Mont Jura and around Mont Blanc we offer bespoke training and coaching for ultra marathons, triathlon and ski racing. So if you have a specific goal in mind and would like personal training or private guiding on the routes then we can help you. Please contact us with any questions.
Please note that you must have the appropriate insurance for your chosen activity. As we will running in the mountains you must be covered for helicopter rescue, repatriation and medical costs. With regard to this please be sure you have read the Insurance section in our Terms and Conditions.
Julia Tregaskis-Allen: works full time as an International Mountain Leader and cross country ski teacher. She's happy to admit that everyday her office window has a new view! Julia's sporting vices are Nordic ski marathons, trail, fell and mountain marathons, climbing and biking. Her life before the mountains was as a personal trainer and triathlete.
Zinal is easily reached from other European and worldwide destinations by road, rail, coach or plane. For suggested travel links please refer to our Booking & Information pages for further details. Geneva is the closest international airport (just 90 minutes away), making shared transfers, buses or trains easy to arrange. Please contact us if you need further advise on your specific travel requirements.
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The daily routes are stunning, and time is taken to allow everyone to appreciate the beautiful environment and their surroundings as well as get lots of exercise. This was my first summer adventure to the Alps and I look forward to going back next year, for hopefully both a winter and a summer Tracks and Trails trip! Sam Ford