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La Traversata

Skitouring · Zermatt
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Zermatt Tourismus Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • On the via ferrata in rock, ice and snow
    / On the via ferrata in rock, ice and snow
    Photo: ZERMATTERS, Zermatt Tourismus
  • / The skis remain on the backpack during the whole via ferrata
    Photo: ZERMATTERS, Zermatt Tourismus
  • / Impressive views of Switzerland and Italy
    Photo: ZERMATTERS, Zermatt Tourismus
  • / The historically important Furggen mountain station to the left and the Matterhorn to the right.
    Photo: Patrice Biner, Zermatt Tourismus
m 3500 3000 2500 2000 1500 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 km
A tour for active skiers, ski tour enthusiasts and fans of adventure. La Traversata heads over a via ferrata on the border between Switzerland and Italy and is ideal for freeriders, too.
Distance 7.7 km
4:00 h
233 m
1,546 m

This ski tour starts at the Furggsattel mountain station. From there, it takes an hour to reach the entry point for the winter via ferrata “La Traversata”. With your skis on your backpack, you then climb the via ferrata – this takes about an hour – until reaching the historic Furggen mountain station (3,500 metres). To finish off, strap your skis back on and enjoy a 1,500 metre-long freeride descent to Italian Breuil-Cervinia, with the south face of the Matterhorn behind you all the way.

  • Climb rock and ice with skis on your backpack (and crampons)
  • Only for confident alpinists with a head for heights
  • Excellent skiing abilities and ski tour experience required

Author’s recommendation

This tour is also accessible in summer but it takes a bit longer to get to the start.

The historically important Furggen mountain station was a pioneering effort of the tourism visionaries from Breuil-Cervinia in Italy. It was used as the mountain station for a cable car lift well into the 1990s.


Profile picture of Zermatt Tourismus
Zermatt Tourismus
Update: November 02, 2020
Highest point
Furggen, 3,500 m
Lowest point
2,014 m
Best time of year
Cardinal direction

Safety information

  • Always go with a mountain guide on a tour
  • Stay up-to-date with the weather and avalanche status: Snow Report
    More information is available in the Swiss avalanche bulletins (
  • Always maintain visual contact with accompanying persons
  • Use key sections and extremely steep slopes individually
  • Never go into a wild game protection zone (these are marked and one will be fined)
  • Always switch the avalanche transceiver (LVS device) unit to transmission
  • Always carry a shovel and a probe
  • Pay close attention to daily atmospheric warming and continually re-evaluate the situation

Tip: “Be searchable”. Equip yourself with an additional RECCO rescue reflector*. Whether summer or winter. Available in our Online-Shop or our information desk.
*The additional reflector does not replace an avalanche beacon.

Tips and hints

Further information & mountain guide agency


Mountain station Furggsattel (3,349 m) (3,327 m)
45.950687, 7.704227
45°57'02.5"N 7°42'15.2"E
32T 399576 5089384


Breuil - Cervinia (IT) (2,050 m)

Turn-by-turn directions

Mountain station Furggsattel – entrance to the winter via ferrata – mountain station Furggen – Breuil-Cervinia (IT).

We recommend to book a mountain guide who knows well the place.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

By train to the Matterhorn village: 3½ hours from Zürich airport or 4 hours from Geneva airport. Change at Visp onto the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn (Matterhorn Gotthard Railway). From Visp, the railway leads through the Mattertal valley past idyllic small villages to Zermatt.

Zermatt is also the start and finish point for the world-famous Glacier Express panoramic train journey (Zermatt to St. Moritz or Davos).

Getting there

Zermatt is car-free. Private vehicles are permitted only as far as Täsch (5 km before Zermatt). The Täsch–Zermatt road is closed to the public.

Onward travel to Zermatt is either by private taxi or shuttle train. Trains depart every 20 minutes; the journey takes about 12 minutes, and ends at the Bahnhofplatz in Zermatt.


Täsch has car parks with both covered and open-air parking – e.g. at the Matterhorn Terminal or privately operated facilities.

Onward travel: see “Getting there”.


45.950687, 7.704227
45°57'02.5"N 7°42'15.2"E
32T 399576 5089384
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike


We recommend:

  • Ski touring equipment: touring ski-boots, touring skis with touring bindings, ski poles, skins, crampons
  • Climbing harness
  • Via ferrata kit
  • Backpack, shovel, probe
  • Avalanche transeiver
  • Warm weatherproof clothing
  • Warm gloves and warm hat
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Warm drinks
  • Snack (high energy foods such as chocolate, dried fruit etc.)

Important! Requirement: very good skiing skills and abilities, ski touring experience, surefooted with no fear of heights

Basic Equipment for Ski Touring

  • Ski Helmet
  • Goggles
  • Sunglasses
  • 2 pairs of Gloves: lightweight, breathable and windproof for going uphill, regular ski gloves for downhill
  • Neckwear
  • moisture wicking skull / knit cap
  • Layered, moisture wicking clothing
  • Lightweight rain and windproof ski jacket
  • Additional warm jacket
  • Long, warm technical socks plus liners and spares
  • Lightweight wind- and waterproof ski pants
  • 20 to 28 liter rucksack, preferably backcountry type
  • Lip protection (SPF 30+)
  • Ample supply of drinking water and snacks
  • First aid kit
  • Blister kit
  • Bivy / survival bag  
  • Survival blanket
  • Headlamp
  • Pocket knife
  • Whistle
  • Cell phone
  • Cash
  • Navigation equipment / map and compass
  • Emergency contact details
  • ID

Technical Equipment for Ski Touring

  • Ski touring boots
  • Ski touring bindings to fit boots
  • Ski touring skins to fit skis
  • Skis
  • Ski poles, preferably telescopic type
  • Avalanche safety equipment to consider: beacon, avalanche probe, avalanche shovel
  • Ski touring crampons
  • Crevasse rescue kit
  • Ski touring harness
  • Light ice axe
  • Ski touring ropes
  • Avalanche airbag backpack
  • The 'basic' and 'technical' equipment lists are generated based on the selected activity. They are not exhaustive and only serve as suggestions for what you should consider packing.
  • For your safety, you should carefully read all instructions on how to properly use and maintain your equipment.
  • Please ensure that the equipment you bring complies with local laws and does not include restricted items.

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7.7 km
4:00 h
233 m
1,546 m
Scenic Geological highlights Cableway ascent/descent Insider tip Linear route Clear area


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