Griesalp and AboveBy Will • Sep 6th, 2009 • Category: Climbs, Cycling
Switzerland’s Post buses are famous for providing bus service in remote and beautiful corners of the Alps. And in the Kiental valley in central Switzerland is the steepest Post bus route in Europe.
The valley is dominated by the snow-covered peaks of Blumlisalp at the far end – and the goal today was to get as high possible on my hybrid bike.
Doreen and I started in the village of Kiental, although purists could start much lower in Reichenbach. From Kiental, almost immediately the road becomes private with limited car access – perfect for cycling.
We bumped into a small procession of “decorated” cows being brought down for the winter:
After six kilometres – upon reaching a little lake and a plateau – the valley seems to end with a steep cliff. This is the Griess Gorge and the next 2 kilometres are just amazing. This extremely steep road hairpins up the cliff with waterfalls on all sides including the impressive Pochten Falls. The sign says the steepest stretch is 28%.
Chapeau to Doreen for making it up this stretch to the tiny village of Griesalp. As a reward she treated herself to a Rosti mit Speck, while I followed the gravel road higher.
You can reach Griesalp (about 1400 metres) on a road bike. But anything higher means gravel roads.
It’s relatively steep but superb cycling. And after a couple of kilometres the road even becomes paved again. Just a few hikers, lots of cows, and perfect views.
The road finally ended at about 1950 metres, but I continued on a hiking trail to 2025 metres to reach a panoramic view of Blumisalp (top photo, unfortunately largely blocked by clouds).
Up and down the ride was only 25 kms, but 25 fantastic kms.