Swiss trip 2016


Well-Known Member
I had started this thread in the KTM section, but as the forum now has a dedicated eMTB section, it seems more relevant here.

I have visited Lauterbrunnen more times than I care to remember, but last year saw my first trip there taking an eMTB. There was a specific reason for taking the bike then, which can be found here but this years trip is just to get some more fun miles put in, whilst enjoying some stunning scenery.

I pretty much carry the kitchen sink with me when out riding and given the distance away from home, along with potentially remote terrain, I'm taking not only the kitchen sink, I'm taking the whole kitchen!

As well as the kit shown here which tucks neatly away into my superb CamelBak, there is also money, a foil blanket, front light and spare Bosch battery.


I have been struggling to decide which bike to actually take with me this year, but after much thought, I am taking the full suspension KTM Lycan again. I would have taken the hardtail KTM Macina Race, but I don't think that I could handle two weeks of using SRAM!

The same as last year, the bike has been fully stripped and serviced, brake fluid has been replaced with fresh fluid, a new chain and front sprocket has gone on, new organic brake pads fitted, wheel bearings replaced, spokes tensioned and wheels trued, plus all of the usual service adjustments have been carried out.

Given the harsh conditions and use that my bikes get put through, I'm always amazed at just how well that they scrub up. I really could never see me switching to any other brand of bike, ever again.

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Roll on Swiss mountains. :)

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I've been sitting down looking at Google earth trying to work out some very ambitious routes, and I have a big hankering to try to either get to, or down from the Schilthorn, Piz Gloria, elevation 9,744ft, Lauterbrunnen where we are staying is 2,631ft.
I have no idea if it even possible, but I do know that there is a black sky run from there.
What I have just discovered, and I'm definitely going to be doing this, is that I should be able to at least climb and descent from the next cable car station down at Birg elevation 8782ft.

This looks amazing!

I've climbed and descended the 2.08 min point onwards several times, and oddly the clip does nothing to show just how steep that some of it is. I couldn't get enough grip to ride up the 2.52 point, and had to walk about 50 metres of it. You just catch a glimpse of this sign in the clip.

The bike is now loading and good to go.

Pic from last, but all is just the same.


I shall certainly be exploring the area in the next valley.

I have also been exploring the possibilities of doing the following route, as I have previously completed the lower sections, but not the upper.

I decided to ride up to Birg yesterday to complete the ride back down as in the Shilthorn movie clip above. That clip does nothing to show the steepness of it, and I really struggled for traction climbing it, and the front wheel was constantly off the ground. Oddly when I watched the clip, I wondered why the rider went so slowly down the concrete strip. Having tried to ride up it and failed, I now know why, it seems almost verticle when you are there. I rode the first section of it down, then bottled it.
The elevation gain for the ride is pretty impressive.

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Another very tough ride today. Roughly 35 miles with approx 8,000ft of elevation gain.


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Finally found a couple of sections that I couldn't get up, and it was also the first wet ride.

The mtb route guide advises riding down this route only, and states clearly that even that isn't advisable. I don't see the point of owning an eMTB if all that you are ever going to do, is to ride flat or down hill. I'm all for chasing elevation gain. :)

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Sadly a very disappointing ride yesterday evening/night. I set out to get some serious elevation gain in, and my chosen route can only be ridden in the evening/night when the mountain is empty of hikers. The weather turned bad in respect of low cloud, and it was too dangerous for me to continue climbing, so called a stop to the ride after 9.6 miles of climbing and 4,975 ft of elevation gain. It was frustrating as I had already hiked the route during the day, and it was a tough climb to back up it again in the evening.

I only had time for a quick trip around the village first thing this morning filming it, so no real climbing today. Just 4.8 miles and 1,028 ft of elevation gain.

Tomorrow is my last chance of getting a ride in, and even that is going to be limited by time. :(
I have just been working out a couple of figures, and whilst I didn't the time that I would have liked to ride, what with having to squeeze riding between days of hiking and other such family stuff, I still managed to complete 42,573 ft of elevation gain, over just 87 miles of climbing.
Thanks for the kind words. :)

As someone said else where on the forum recently, the sub sections are buried too deeply for anyone to see or take notice of them. Sadly I can see them failing. :(

I'm just starting to sort a few more photos out and will also be detailing a few routes with a bit more depth.

I only have a very cheap SJ4000 movie camera, which I took along on a few of the rides, and I'll slowly piece those together as well, although I'm afraid that I'm not too good when it comes to things like this.

Here is a lengthy bright and sunny downhill ride from Wengernalp to Lauterbrunnen. The route steepens considerably at about the 15 minute point, and is very hard work to climb.

(the clip is currently editing, so may not load properly yet)

Birg cable car station to Stechelberg part one.

The long pause at 2.07 and 2.57 is because despite riding up the route, I had no idea of where to ride when coming back down.

Part two.

The walkers became a bit frustrating, and I stop at roughly the 6.20 point, as what the clip doesn't show, is that the strip of concrete is seemingly almost vertical.
I started to ride down it, but then decided to take a more zig zag route down to the side. My balls aren't that big, and I figured that riding a near vertical strip for 70 metres, might see me crumpled at the bottom in a mess.

Thinking about it, the clip also does nothing to show just how steep that most of the ride down was.

Final sunny instalment of the ten miles trip back down the mountain from Birg to Stechelberg.
Sadly once a gain more walkers to contend with, the ride became more interesting for me at about the ten minute in point.

The one wet evening of the two week trip.

A chilled from down from Wengen to Lauterbrunnen. The clip doesn't do any justice to the steepness of the track.

I rode some pretty scary stuff without issue over the course of the trip, but took a massively heavy fall yesterday on my first ride back here in the UK. I typical is that!
My collar bone and shoulder don't exactly feel great. :(