Running along the Great Aletsch Glacier, this is a smooth trail that keeps you moving, except when you can’t resist stopping to admire the view.
Distance 27 km
The Jungfrau-Aletsch Protected Area has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. Situated in the heart of this region, the Aletsch Glacier - 20km long and up to 1,000m thick - is the largest in the Alps. The trail runs along this giant piece of ice on a gently sloping path while offering a spectacular view of the surrounding peaks including the Aletschhorn, Matterhorn, Weisshorn, Dom, and other incredible 4,000-meter peaks. The Gletscherstube Märjelen hut offers a rest stop approximately mid-way. From here, the trail bends around the Tälligrat and returns to to Bettmeralp along a wilder, less frequented, but no less stunning route. The loop passes through Unners Tälli, and below Fiescheralp, before finishing on a soft forest trail leading back to town.
Due to the sensitive landscape, please stick to marked trails above the glacier exclusively.
Best time of year
Use of the trails and the information on this website is at your own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.
For all trails:
Use marked trails only, and take note of all signposting – for both your own safety as well as that of grazing animals – and to avoid disturbing wildlife.
Close gates after passing through.
Please treat other trail users, as well as the plants and animals, with respect.
For mountain trails:
Take extra care protecting yourself from the sun at high altitudes. UV radiation can be exceptionally strong, even in cloudy weather.
Plan your trail carefully: take the fitness level of each participant, weather forecast and season into consideration.
Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains, without warning. Appropriate clothing is therefore essential, along with adequate supplies of food and water. In case of uncertain weather conditions, turn back in good time.
Inform others of the route you plan to take. Whenever possible, avoid going alone.
Take note of warning signs indicating constant danger in river beds and along watercourses below dams and reservoirs: water levels may rise rapidly without warning.
After taking the cable car from Betten to Bettmeralp, cross the village to the start of your route at the lower station of the Bettmeralp-Bettmerhorn cable car. Your first ascent will take you to the Bettmersee and Blausee lakes and up the ridge to Biel and Hohbalm. The trail follows the massive Aletsch Glacier towards the Märjelensee and Märjelen-Stausee glacier lakes. After Märjelen-Stausee, the route leads around the Tälligrat before crossing the hilly slope of Unners Tälli and finally back to Bettmeralp through the forest.
Regular train connections from all over Switzerland reach Brig. Change trains in Brig for Betten and take the Betten BAB cableway up to Bettmeralp (Bettmerhorn). The schedule can be found at www.aletscharena.ch.
The Betten Talstation is 12 kilometers north-east of Brig, located on Furkastrasse/Route 19.
Paid parking is available at the Betten Talstation.
32T 428067 5138084
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike
Book recommendation by the author
The Aletsch Arena tourist officeoffers information regarding trail running in the region.
Author’s map recommendations
SwissTopo Maps 1:25,000: 1269 Aletschgletscher
Weather-appropriate clothing: always carry a waterproof jacket