Alfons Julen, a man of action
The Zermatt skier Alfons Julen inspired generations of Swiss people to ski. This portrait gives an insight into his life, which he dedicated to the Alps, and also into his employment with the Gornergrat Railway.
It was a cold winter night when Alfons Julen was born in Zermatt in February 1899. He grew up in the midst of the majestic Swiss Alps and discovered his love of skiing early on. Even as a young man, he spent hours on the snow-covered slopes and quickly developed a talent for the sport.
Medals and achievements
In 1924, at the age of 25, Alfons competed at the Winter Olympics in Chamonix and showed his skills to the world. With a gold medal in his pocket, he returned to Switzerland to prepare for his next challenges. Four years later, he competed at the Olympic Games in St. Moritz and won the bronze medal in the team event as a member of the military ski patrol.
But that was only the beginning of his success. In the following years he became more and more successful in Alpine skiing. At the 1932 Swiss Ski Races in Zermatt, Alfons took second place in the Nordic Combination.
Job at the Gornergrat Railway
Despite his many victories, Alfons remained true to skiing and the Swiss Alpine landscape. Even after his active career, he continued to work in the industry and eventually became an employee of the Gornergrat Railway. There he worked as a line manager and helped ensure that skiers were safely brought up the mountain.
The love of skiing
Alfons was also a man who never stopped fighting. In 1948, at the age of almost 50, he competed in the Gornergrat Derby and won the descent in the category Seniors III. It was an incredible success for a man his age and showed that Alfons was still a top skier.
Alfons Julen was not only a gifted athlete, but also a man who inspired an entire generation with his passion for skiing. Until his death in 1985, he remained a legend in Swiss skiing and a symbol of the courage and endurance it takes to succeed in the sport.