Weissmiesgroup is the easternmost mountain range of Pennine Alps. It exceeds the magic 4000-m-borderline curtly: only the highest summit, the eponymous Weissmies
and it's neighbour Lagginhorn
4010 m wear the much sought-after numeral "4" in the first place. To the northernmost of the "big three", Fletschhorn
with 3993 m, fail 7 meters for the "club" ...
Hard to believe: some people considered to edify a building on the top to bring the summit at 4000 m!
However, this fact has its benefits: the wonderful routes to this beautiful summit is less overpeopled as its two neighbours.
All in all, the Weissmiesgroup has preserved his quietude and nativeness more than much other parts of the Pennine Alps - except the main summits: there you will find sufficient people ...
A characteristic of this massif is a quantity of fair and beautiful summits between 2500 and 4000 m, and natural valleys rise into the steep and high mountain ranges.
Crossing the Fee glacier. Early morning. Weissmies, Lagginhorn and Fletschhorn in the background.
The borders of this alpine region
: the big valley of Rhone with wine, abricots and nice little towns,
: Simplonpass - there you find the border to Italy.
: The nice Anzasca valley (www.ossola.com/img_anzasca.html
) mediating mediterranean flair.
: Last but not least the Saastal with the celebrated place Saas Fee and its neighbours Saas Grund and Saas Almagell. In continuation you find Mattmark reservoir and Monte Moropass. This col between Joderhorn (Weissmies Group) and Monte Moro (Monte Rosa Group) constitutes the borderline of the two massifs.
Touristical interest focus on the two 4000-ers and the 3000-ers Fletschhorn as mixed tour, Jägihorn/Jägigrat as fantastic climbing area in good rock and to the south of Weissmies Portjenhorn, Portjengrat resp. Pizzo Andolla with inspiring climbing routes. The "only" 3210 m Dri Horlini directly over the Almageller hut is a popular climbing summit too, perfect to acclimatize and for less optimal weather conditions.
Nearly all other summits and the awesome long and deep valleys are visited mainly from natives. One can find amazing high mountains hikes, interesting climbs and primordial alpine nature. Three valleys should be mentioned which carve deep in the mountains: Laggintal, Zwischbergental and Valle d'Antrona. In the .... you will find some marvellous mountain lakes.
Weissmiesgroup offers possibilities for everybody: Glacier tours for the high mountains tourist, lonesome hikes for skilled and independent mountaineer, climbing routes in best rock, via ferratas and fantastic ski tours. In the big basin shaped from Weissmies, Laginhorn, Jägigrat and Trifthorn (the western foothills of Weissmies - don't confound with the summit of the same name in the ridge Obergabelhorn - Zinalrothorn) you will find a little ski circus.
The places in the Saastal valley are touristically opend up, you can reach from there both the numerous important and attractive mountains of Mischabel group and the mountains of Weissmies group. So you can expect a eventful mountain vacation. Hotels and Restaurans there are often rather overpeopled and expensive.
On the other side, in Simplon valley, the impressive Gondo valley, Antrona and Anzasca valley the touristic infrastructure is more modest, but the landscape and the possibilities are not less great. Simplon/Gondo valley is a great alpine transicion with lots of traffic.
One word to the name "Weissmeis". It derives from "weisses Moos" (white moss) - the correct spelling is therefore "das Weissmies" (this extraordinary problem fortunately doesn't exist in English ;-)
You can reach Weissmies group comfortable by car or by train.Coming from North you will use the regular approaches into the Pennine Alps (from NW: Rhone valley motorway, Lötschberg tunnel with ...... From NE the upper Rhone valley over Andermatt and Furkapass or Grimselpass. There exist all over good roads and fast train connections).
Coming from South (e.g. from region Milano) you go over Lago Maggiore - Domodossola and transverse the Simplonpass (2005 m). All these run together in Visp in the Rhone valley. From there you can drive with car o use the yellow-white Postbus (with excellent service - and good prices ;-) and so reach Saas Grund. It's the staring point into the heart of the Weissmies group (Wiessmieshütte/Hohsaas) To Almageller Hütte you go on some kilometers south to Saas Almagell (between the two places there are three good camping areas).
You can reach theses mountains from Simplon, from the Antrona and Anzasca valleys too through rather lonesome and scenic paths. From N you can hike also from Brig (Rhone valley) with the aim of reaching the solitary northregions.
It's recommendable and wise to use public transport approaching the Weissmies group. The traffic even in this area of the Alps has grown to a real problem for the environment. Especially in Switzerland there are everywhere excellent connections with train and bus.
An outstanding Overview (not only for Wallis/Valais but for nearly all regions in Europe!) you will find (in English, German and Russian) on the website www.nahverkehr.info
(this homepage obviously is in reconstruccion, the results for Saastal valley you find at present there: www.lokomotive.de/fahrplan/test.php?nvww=anz&kap=CH-VS&grf=1&spr=de
In the first place should be mentioned the three main summits of the group:
Frequently visited are the following summits:
(oder Jegihorn) 3206 m
• Jägigrat (Jegigrat) 3350 m
• Portjenhorn 3567 m
• Pizzo d'Andolla
• Mittelrück oder Pizzo di Loranco 3363 m
• Sonnighorn oder Pizzo Bottarello 3487 m
• Dri Horlini 3096 m (Topo Klettergarten: www.almagellerhuette.ch/sprache/deutsch/seiten/touren/topo.php
All other summits of the group are visited rather rarely or hardley ever:
• Glishorn 2525 m
• Tochuhorn 2661 m
• Staldhorn 2462 m
• Galehorn 2797 m
• Böshorn (Rauthorn) 3267 m
• Gebidum 2317 m
• Ochsehorn 2912 m
• Simelihorn 3124 m
• Mattwaldhorn 3245 m
• Sengchuppa 3606 m
• Wenghorn 2587 m
• Rothorn 3108 m
• Tällihorn 3448 m
• Tossenhorn 3225 m
• Zibelenfluehorn 2987 m, Schijenhorn 2980 m, Balmahorn 2870 m, Galihorn 2577 m, Guggelihorn 2351 m
• Seehorn 2438 m
• Saaser Grat (Cresta di Saas) 3361 m
• Latelhorn (Ounta di Saas) 3204 m
• Spechhorn (Pizzo di Antigine) 3189 m, Jazzihörner (Pizzo Cingino N e S) 3227 und 3104 m
• Joderhorn 3035 m
• Pizzo San Martino 2733 m
• Pizzo del Ton 2675 m
• Pizzo Straciugo 2712 m
• Cima d'Azoglio 2611 m
• Cima Verosso 2444 m
• Camoscellahorn (Pizzo Pioltone) 2612 m
• Pizzo Giezza 2658 m
• Pizzo Montalto 2705 m
When to climb
You can undertake hikes and tours the whole year. You will find ecxellent and partially very lonesome skitour areas, the best time for such intentions from February/March until mid of June like nearly everywhere in the Alps.
Hikes and climbes are best in June to October, best time for high mountains tours is July, August and september. Mid July to mid September the huts has opend, in the remaining period in most huts the Winterraum (winterroom) is open at any time. Also the bivouacs are always accessible.
Camping, refuges und bivouacs
Touristic places in the surrounding valleys offer a great number of Hotels and Campings, especially in Saastal valley. But also in the villages of the E- and S-side you will find such accomodations.
In the mountain region itself you find some mountain refuges:
• Weissmieshütte(n) 2726 m (SAC Sektion Olten, Tel. +41 (0)27/9572554, E-Mail: email@example.com
, Web: www.sac-olten.ch/huetten/huetten.html
• Hohsaashütte 3098 m (privat, Tel. +41 (0)27/9571713, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
, Web: www.marnet.ch/over-the-top/start.htm
• Almagellerhütte 2894 m (SAC Sektion Niesen, Tel. +41 (0)27/957 11 79, E-Mail: email@example.com
, Web: www.almagellerhuette.ch
• Hotel Almageller Alp 2194 m (privat, Tel. +41 (0)27/9571736)
• Rifugio Andolla 2052 m (CAI Sektion Villadossola, Tel. +39 (0)324/575980)
• Rifugio Città di Novara 1474 m (CAI Sektion Novara, Tel. +39 (0)324/575977, ereichbar mit PKW, auf der Alpe Cheggio von Antropiana, gelegen am See Bacino A. di Cavalli)
Besides there are some bivouacs in rather lonesome areas as valuable bases:
• Fletschhornbiwak 3040 (Missionare vom Immensee, Schwyz KS 641.560/115/750)(Sengchuppa, Fletschhorn N-Wand)
• Bivacco Piero de Zen 3014 m (SAC Monte Rosa KS 643.560/115.000) (Fletschorn)
• Lagginbiwak 2428 m (SAC Monte Rosa KS 646.860/112.740)(Lagginhorn, Fletschhorn...)
• Bivacco Città di Varese 2650 m (CAI Sektion Varese, KS 646.500/103.770)(Portjengrat, Mittelrück)
• Bivacco Camposecco 2335 m (CAI Sektion Villadossola, KS 647.340/100.970)(near Lago di Camposecco, the lonesome tours in Cresta di Saas)
• Bivacco Antigine 2855 m (CAI Sektion Villadossola, KS 644.420/96.620) (Ofentalpass/Passo di Antigine - Südteil der Weissmiesgruppe)
• Bivacco Longa 2036 m (CAI Sektion Macungnaga, KS 648.280/93.200) (hoch über Ceppo Morelli im Anzasca Tal)
There are no red tapes in this region.
Via ferratas and named trails
There are at least two interesting via ferratas
in this group:
Via ferrata del Lago (www.klettersteig.ch/ViaFerrataDelLago.html
) Rif. Andolla - Sonnigpass 3137 m - Almageller Hütte
A charming trail in about 2000 m from Gspon to Saas Grund - always high over the Saastal valley.
Accomodation: Bergrestaurant Heimischgartu 2100 m, Tel. 027/95792920, 10 Beds mid June to end September (KS 638.580112.220)
A good webadress you find here:
Maps and books
Mountain books are only available in German, French and Italian
Walliser Alpen, Michael Waeber, Bergverlag Rother München (German)
SAC Club- und Auswahlführer (German and French)
Landeskarte der Schweiz
105 Valais - Wallis 1:100.000 (entire Wallis/Valais)
1:50.000 (Good maps for hiking and mountaineering)
5006 Zusammensetzung Matterhorn - Mischabel 1:50.000
274 Visp 1:50.000
284 Mischabel 1:50.000
1:25.000 (Exact maps for high mountain tours and lonley terrain without paths)
1329 Saas 1:25.000
1309 Simplon 1:25.000
1349 Monte Moro 1:25.000
1289 Brig 1:25.000
(official Saas-Fee-site with Informations about weather etc.)
(Swedish mountaineer, nice mountain site)
(italian website with interesting pictures from a less known part of the Weissmies Group)