Bahnhof Zermatt Gornergrat Bahn um 1900

A ride to the summit with six stops

Story 6

Train stations are connecting places where people start journeys, board the train and set off to new destinations. This is one of the reasons why the stations and stops of the Gornergrat Railway have an important emotional significance, which has gradually changed over the course of 125 years. The stations mentioned at the beginning were Zermatt, Riffelalp, Riffelberg and Gornergrat. Findelbach, Riffelboden and Rotenboden were designated as stops with crossing possibilities. For a long time, passengers were only catered for at the Riffelalp and Riffelberg stations alongside Zermatt and Gornergrat. 

Zermatt: train station and depots 

The old wooden railway station in Zermatt was demolished in 1962 and replaced by a new building. Since then, the interior of the current station building has been regularly adapted to meet the latest requirements. The Gornergrat Railway depots near the station were also regularly expanded due to the acquisition of new rolling stock. In 1961, the tracks were expanded. 

Findelbach with a freight station 

The Findelbach stop is located at 1,774m.a.s.l. and serves mainly as a crossing point. It is, however, also the site of the freight facility, which was built in 1956/57 for the transport of materials for the construction of the Grande Dixence dam wall. The current building dates back to 1962. 

Riffelalp with a tram connection 

Riffelalp station was very important from the very beginning. It is located at 2,211 m.a.s.l. and serves as a link to Hotel Riffelalp. From 1899 onwards, a tramway transported guests from the station to Hotel Riffelalp (2,222 m.a.s.l.). After the fire at the hotel in 1961, the station was less important for a while. This changed with the reopening of the five-star Hotel Riffelalp Resort 2222 m in 2000. The tram started to run again and the old wooden building of the station was demolished in 2003-2004 and replaced by a new building which meets all new requirements. 

Riffelboden for skiers and material transport 

On 4 December 1933, the Walliser Volksfreund reported that the stations of Findelbach, Riffelalp and Riffelboden were served according to a timetable posted in the hotels. However, at 2,358 m.a.s.l., Riffelboden was never an official stop. It was used for several years in winter as a stop for skiers and has been used as a freight transhipment point for various construction projects since 1958. 

Riffelberg and Riffelhaus 

Riffelberg station (2,582 m.a.s.l.) is an important starting point for hikers and snow sports enthusiasts and serves as a feeder for the guests of Hotel «Riffelhaus 1853». 

Rotenboden: stop at the request of the SAC 

In 1917, the Gornergrat Railway officially opened the previously optional Rotenboden stop at 2,825 m.a.s.l. In doing so, it complied with the wishes of the Swiss Alpine Club (SAC), whose members use Rotenboden as a starting point for high-altitude tours to Lake Riffelsee, the Riffelhorn and the Monte Rosa hut. However, the building for the station was not built until 1952. 

Gornergrat: terminus with a view 

The Gornergrat terminus is now located at 3,089 m.a.s.l. In 1909, with the elevation of the railway, the new station was opened, which was 71 m higher than the original location. Major reconstruction work took place in 2004. The main floor houses sales areas, a waiting room combined with the switchgear and the operations control centre. The outer façades remained unchanged in their basic form. 

Do you like this story?