I'll be honest, this is our first year of really sledding as a family. I know, crazy right! Please stay with me. I was nervous about the children taking sleds down alpine slopes alone and thus we waited. Trust is a big thing, especially in the Alps for safety reasons.
This year, our children were old enough to fully understand the rules and the safety required to sled independently and thus we decided it was time.
Guess what? We have found a new family activity that we all love; even me the one in the family that prefers to go up mountains rather than down.
If you are searching for another winter sled run that the entire family will adore, give the sled run, from Ämpächli to Elm a try.
The start of the run...
Parking is available free of charge at the Sportbahnen, Elm 1020m. From there, you will cross the street and take the gondola up to Ämpächli.
The gondola does not accept the Half Fare card, nor Junior Cards. The cost of a one way ticket up the mountain for adults is CHF 11.00 and children were CHF 8.00.
Sleds are available for rent at the Ämpächli lift station. Though we did see a height requirement of 140m, our children were both able to ride alone down the mountain. At the time of our rental, all four sleds cost a total of CHF 20.00. Return your sleds at the bottom of the run.
There is a toilet located at the Bergrestaurant Ämpächli.
Food is available also at the Bergrestaurant Ämpächli.
There is one designated sled run that is 4km in length and takes roughly 20 minutes dropping 460m.
Evening Sled Run:
When good weather permits, this sled run is open at night for an evening sled run on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. How fun would that be?
This trail felt relatively safe for a novice like myself and believe me, I was checking as I flew down the hill. The trail is groomed routinely and there is padding on the trees. I would recommend this route for older children and those with a bit of sledding experience. Helmets and goggles are a must!
It's a fast run (my husband tracked 40+km on a downhill section), so be aware!
We were wet and cold once we finished the run and were grateful for a change of warm clothes.
Going on a week day or early in the morning on a weekend ensures less crowds on the sled run.
We have a general rule in our family, which is, we quit when we are ahead. What does that mean? If we had a successful run, we finish when everyone is still smiling and happy. No need to push it.
We always aim to leave the mountains on a high note.
Have fun and happy winter!