The Via Valais

Trail running on the Barrhorn, the Alps highest trail.

Trail running on the Barrhorn, the Alps highest trail.

This weekend, we’re setting out on our most ambitious project of the year. The goal is partly work, but primarily personal. We hope to establish what we feel is going to be the perfect multi-day trail running tour through the Swiss Alps. We’re calling it the Via Valais.

After nearly 20 years of exploring trails in the Alps, last year’s production of Run the Alps Switzerland, and this year’s running tour exploration for our Elevation : The Alps Trail & Peak Running Resource – we discovered that some of our favorite trails could be linked to create the perfect running tour. We’ve settled on 8 days of running through some of the Alps’ very best scenery, with peaks to climb along the way, huts to overnight, and a finish you’ll never forget. To provide some drama, there is a question mark. We have a pass to cross that we’ve never done, and it involves a bit of easy scrambling and a small glacier to cross. Will it be suitable for a trail running tour? This is the crux, if it goes, then the whole thing goes.

On Sunday, two good friends, Janine, Kim, and myself, will launch with 15 liter packs for 175km and 10,000+ meters of vertical, plus a few of those tempting bonus peaks to climb. If all goes according to plan, the result should be a trail running tour that we hope every trail runner will put on their life list. We think it’s that good.

If you’d like to follow along, we’ll do our best to stay social : Instagram  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  Or, keep an eye on #viavalais

Finally, a huge thanks to the brands who believe in what we’re doing, and who’s product we’ll be relying on : Dynafit  |  Osprey Packs  |  FatMap  |  Osmo Nutrition  |  Trail Butter  |  Valais Tourism  |  Val d’Anniviers  |  Turtmenntal  |  Zermatt

By Dan Patitucci

Route planning

First, lots of screen time. Next, trail time.

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