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Skiing in the moonlight

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On the night of a full moon in Zermatt, something very special happens. When the slopes have emptied for the day and the piste patrol have done their rounds, the piste bashers come out for their nightly undertaking of smoothing out all 200km of slopes, but the day is not yet done. For a select few the lifts begin turn again and the mountain restaurant at Rothorn opens it’s doors for a night of Fondue and wine.

Zermatt from above and the Matterhorn by night

Our group, a mixture of ES and Bramble staff, collected at the base of Sunnega station at 6.45pm and made the all too familiar walk up the tunnel to the waiting funicular. At European Snowsport we work closely with Bramble Ski (a luxury chalet company based all across the Alps). A small number of our instructors from the Verbier and Zermatt teams recieve extra training to become Bramble Ski Pros (BSP). When you book a holiday with Bramble you will have a BSP as your concierge and on hand ski instructor. They will help to organise your holiday on and off the slopes.

We arrived at Sunnega and caught the gondoldas up to Rothorn. Our surroundings were clearly visible under the clear, moonlit sky. Piste bashers around the rest of resort looked like stars on the hill side, whilst the real constellations put on a show overhead.

ES instructors Charlotte and Hanna

The restaurant at Rothorn sits at 3100m, with a panoramic view of the valley below and of course the famous Matterhorn. We crowded inside the modern alpine style building and found our seats. After a starter platter of dried meats the fondue arrived, accompanied by some Swiss Valais white wine. We had until 10.30pm to enjoy our dinner then it was time to venture back out into the night.

From Rothorn it’s possible to get all the way back to Zermatt in one go! The resort had prepared one perfect, long run all the way down and we enjoyed grippy corduroy snow over the 1678m height difference.

If you have ever skied by your own moon shadow you will know that headtorches are only really needed as a backup. For us the snow was lit up silver in the glow and Zermatt gleamed down in the valley as we ski perfectly pisted runs, descending between pine trees gently swaying in the dark. On a clear night it was plenty enough to see by.

BSP Jacob enjoying the view

After plenty of stops to take photos we eventually all met at the bottom outside Cervo, big smiles on everyone’s faces. Easily one of the best experiences to be had as a skier in Zermatt. If you are visiting the resort this year we would highly recommend. If you would like to know more about the Rothorn moonlight ski have a look on the website here.

Does this sounds like something would be interested in but your not sure if you are ready for the ski part yet? Why not book some lessons with an ES instructor first and they can show you around the area in daylight! Get in touch with our bookings team for more information here.

Neill laying down some night turns…

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