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Andermatt, Meiringen - Uri, Switzerland

Clickable map of uri - please use text links



Accommodation for this areaHOTELS/B&B

What do the symbols mean? don't miss scenic route Avoid if at all possible Sweepers Twisties Hairpins Town or Point of Interest Web Cam Available

Most books on biking in the Alps have a whole chapter devoted to this region, and so they should. The towns are varied and will suit nearly every taste, from the up-market Interlaken and Grindelwald, through the Sherlock Holmes museum in friendly Meiringen to small, rustic Andermatt in the heart of Canton Uri. They are all within distance of the famous 6-passes route (Grimsel, Susten, Furka, St.Gotthard, Oberalp and Nufenen). You can make a long, hard day of it if you do all at once, but I'd take my time and enjoy some of the rather spectacular scenery as well. The Grimsel and Furka passes have good views of the Rhône glacier, where the river starts, at a one horse town called Gletsch. On the Susten pass you can walk onto the Steingletscher glacier.

The canton Uri, where Andermatt is situated, is one of the three founding states which formed the original Swiss Federation in 1291, with Schwyz and Unterwalden. Little if any Rhaeto-Romanic is spoken here, but there are still some speakers in small regions in the canton of Tessin (Ticino) and in the border areas of Austria.


(Thanks to Hans Rotzetter for additional information)
B6 Meiringen -Grimselpass -Gletsch Silver medal symbol
2005-06-14

don't miss scenic route Hairpin Sweeper Webcam N46?33.762 E08?21.215
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Summer on the Grimsel is synonymous with rain. It rarely fails. When it's not raining then it's snowing, even in July. Actually we rode it in 2005 and it was dry and sunny! But whatever the weather, the surfaceis excelent and the road is wide with wide hairpins. Good visibility on this dream of a road. Nothing steep or tight, except perhaps on the southern ramp, which is quite steep. However it is relatively short and visibility is good.
The top is bare , green-tinted rocks. Lower down teh northern ramp is trees. Quite a fast road, medium to easy difficulty. I do this one before you try the Furka if you're not too confident on high passes. The glacier above Gletch is the source of the Rh?ne river.
Report from Eric ven de Ruit (2000-09-15)
There's a speed trap on the Grimsel pass every day! You'll find our friends halfway down the pass (on the northern ramp there is a lake with a damn) using IR equipment. They don't usually spend more than 1-2 hours there per day.

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B19 Disentis - Oberalppass - Andermatt
2005-06-15

N46?39.321 E08?40.818
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The only way out of Andermatt towards the east. It's an easy pass - a natural extension of the road from Disentis. I am always in a rush to get to Andermatt when I ride this and it always goes by in a mist of mediocrity , which is unfair because it really is a good little road. It's well-made, wide, no surprises, easy to overtake and has good visibility. It can be busy at times, but that's only a problem in bad weather. The only surprise is the sharp curve in the tunnel on the descent into Andermatt.
A fun, easy ride.

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B11 Wassen - Sustenpass - Meiringen Bronze medal symbol
don't miss scenic route N46?44.119 E08?26.943
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This is a deceptively long pass - it used to take an eternity, but now they've finished the eastern road it doesn't take half as long. The east side runs through a long valley. The west side is steeper and there is a great view of the Steingletscher glacier that comes nearly down to the road. Because of the roadworks the surface is excellent all the way. It's been widened a bit and is now one of the best roads in the area.
*** no petrol between Wassen and Innertkirchen.

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Brig - Simplonpass - Arona
N46?15.060 E08?02.325
A major crossing from Switzerland to Italy, and thus wide, well-made and often busy.

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B19 Gletsch - Andermatt Gold medal symbol
2004-07-03

don't miss scenic route Hairpin N46?34.379 E08?24.902
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Furka pass (2431m / 7976ft) The road is very steep at the top. Halfway up you can stop and visit the ice tunnels inside the Rhône glacier. You can get up some pretty high speeds on sections here. Be warned: as on a lot of passes, no crash-barriers.
Check out the loony Norwegian's video atwww.roadmc.com

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B19 Brig - Ulrichen - Gletsch Gold medal symbol
scenic route Twisty Sweeper N46?32.663 E08?21.340
This is my personal favourite bits in this area actually. A pleasant picturesque stroll through some typically Swiss countryside from Brig to the bottom of the Nufenen pass. Get your Alpine meadow photos here, and look out ofr the little cottages perched on piles of stones.
From here up to Gletsch is where it really starts. Ton-up sweepers gradually turning tighter and tighter with the mountains closing in until you find yourself climbing steeply up the side of a narrow gorge. Just before you reach Gletsch there's an impressively wild waterfall.
At Gletsch, of course you have the choice of continuing up to the extreme top of the Furka, or head for the rainy Grimsel.

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B9 (E62) Brig - Martigny
avoid if possible Webcam N46?18.959 E07?59.277
Arrow-straight 120 mile long commercial zone with scattered large towns. It'd be OK on a Goldwing. Yawn.

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B2 (E35) Andermatt - San Gotthardo - Airolo
don't miss N46?33.349 E08?33.780
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Pso. del S.Gottardo (2108m / 6775ft): Into Italian speaking Switzerland, the road is wide and fast on both sides. Some great wide hairpins, sweepers and a scratcher's dream.
They've rebuilt the top of the pass into a tourist centre, but for interest, try and find the original and now disused, "Val Tremola'" road.Cobbles and bumps galore. Try it in the wet for added thrills.

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Airolo - Nufenen Pass - Ulrichen
don't miss scenic route Hairpin Sweeper N46?28.629 E08?23.232
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Nufenen pass (2478m / 8130ft): The southwestern ramp is fairly uneventful until you get nearly up to the top. It has a generally good surface: mostly concrete often tarmaced-over. The northern side, especially at the very top is very steep for one or two hairpins, lower down the surface has average patches, but has been recently repaired and resurfaced. Nearly all the bumps are gone.
Scenery ranges from bleak bare rock to lush woodland.

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Disentis - Lukmanier pass - Biasca
N46?33.812 E08?48.080
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Pso. del Lucomagno (1914m / 6280ft)I discovered this by taking a wrong turn in Disentis. The pass is quite low but the landscape is not dissimilar to Dartmoor at the top. The road is generally poor, with average sections. Uninspiring scenery and an unexciting road. Don't bother.
Watch out for Marmots.

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B17 Altdorf - Klausen pass - Glarus
don't miss scenic route Webcam N46?52.094 E08?51.244
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Altdorf
Klausen pass (1948m / 6391ft): The home of William Tell. The first section up from Altdorf is mostly scattered villages, with a good surface so it can be pretty fast. From Unterschächen the road narrows and busses and caravans are banned (except the post-bus). It used to be bumpy but has now (July 2001) a brilliant surface all the way. The eastern side is a wide valley blocked by a steep wall which the road somehow avoids. Scenery. Not as difficult a run as it used to be, I'd say medium, partly because of its length, but the eastern valley is a dream.
Watch out for cows and related biological 'traces'.

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Rudenz - Glaubenbüelen pass - Escholzmatt - Thun
N46?49.164 E08?05.608
Glaubüelen pass (1611m / 5285ft): The main road runs for a long time along the bottom of a wide scenic valley. Fairly empty as most traffic takes the road via Interlaken.

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Interlaken - Mürren
scenic route N46?41.088 E07?51.271
Views of the Eiger and Jungfrau: Take it easy here and do some oo-ing and ahh-ing at some of the best scenery in Switzerland.

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