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Cycling

Furka Pass – Legendary Mountain Passes

Cycling · Valais
Responsible for this content
Valais/Wallis Promotion Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Cyclists in front of Hotel Belvedere, Furka Pass
    / Cyclists in front of Hotel Belvedere, Furka Pass
    Photo: Tamara Berger, Valais/Wallis Promotion - Tamara Berger
  • / Cyclists, Furka Pass
    Photo: Tamara Berger, Valais/Wallis Promotion - Tamara Berger
  • / Cyclist, Furka Pass
    Photo: Tamara Berger, Valais/Wallis Promotion - Tamara Berger
  • / Cyclist, Furka Pass
    Photo: Tamara Berger, Valais/Wallis Promotion - Tamara Berger
  • / View from Furka pass
    Photo: Tamara Berger, Valais/Wallis Promotion - Tamara Berger
  • / Furka road near to Gletsch
    Photo: Martin Wabel, Valais/Wallis Promotion
  • / View to the Grimsel Pass from Furka road
    Photo: Martin Wabel, Valais/Wallis Promotion
  • / Ascent to the Furka pass with Rhone glacier in the background
    Photo: Szymon Kotowski, szymonbike
  • / Ascent to the Furka Pass
    Photo: Martin Wabel, Valais/Wallis Promotion
m 2500 2000 1500 1000 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km Eisgrotte im Rhonegletscher

From the village of Oberwald at the very top of the Goms Valley to the summit of the Furka Pass, this road is one of the highest passes in Switzerland, connecting the canton of Valley with the canton of Uri.

difficult
16.5 km
3:00 h
1064 m
3 m

The Furka Pass is probably one of the prettiest passes in Switzerland. At an altitude of 2,431m, it is the third highest after the Umbrail and Nufenen passes. From Oberwald in the magnificent Goms Valley until the summit which straddles the cantons of Valais and Uri, the route passes through Gletsch and then rises, coming flirtatiously close with the Rhone Glacier. The great river is derived from these remote snow melts before crossing the entire canton until Lake Geneva and – then – on to the Mediterranean! It is definitely worth a stop at the restaurant that overlooks this incredible place.

Author’s recommendation

Have a rest at the Belvédère hotel and visit the ice cave inside the Rhone Glacier. 

Difficulty
difficult
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
Furka Pass, 2429 m
Lowest point
Oberwald, 1368 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

Strictly respect the Swiss traffic rules. Please note that you are running the tour at your own risk and all liability is refused. Please be considerate to plants and animals. For your own safety, wear an helmet every time you ride a bike. Emergency numbers: 144 Ambulance / 117 Police / 1414 Helicopter Rescue (Rega).

Equipment

We recommend: bike in excellent working order, helmet, gloves and bell, clothing suitable for the weather (always carry a waterproof), food and drink.

Tips, hints and links

 More information: 

 

Start

Oberwald (1367 m)
Coordinates:
Geographic
46.534353, 8.348159
UTM
32T 450014 5153627

Destination

Furka pass

Turn-by-turn directions

 

The cyclist who tackles the Furka Pass will discover the very edge of the canton of Valais and the source of the Rhone River; the most important river in the canton. The first few kilometres from Oberwald to Gletsch pass through forests and waterfalls on this road that eventually leads to Andermatt and the canton of Uri. After passing through Gletsch, the road climbs with a long straight hugging the side of the mountain before beginning to meander into curves. On the left, the Rhone Glacier is spectacular, and will leave you daydreaming despite the effort. The last kilometres to the summit become less steep, giving you a break to ponder over the views of the  Uri Alps and the Saint-Gotthard Massif.

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Note


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Frequent CFF train connections from all over Switzerland to Brig, then MGB (Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn) train or bus to Oberwald.

Getting there

From Brig, follow the cantonal route 19 "Furkastrasse" for 40km until you arrive in Oberwald.

Parking

Parking at the train station in Oberwald, follow the local car park routeing. 
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Book recommendation by the author

Brochures: Road Cycling Map

Author’s map recommendations

SwissTopo Maps 1:25'000: 1250 Ulrichen


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Difficulty
difficult
Distance
16.5 km
Duration
3:00h
Ascent
1064 m
Descent
3 m
In and out Scenic Refreshment stops available Cultural/historical value Geological highlights Botanical highlights Insider tip

Statistics

: h
 km
 m
 m
Highest point
 m
Lowest point
 m
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