We’re in Wengen five nights and had a fantastic morning on Sept. 9. Thanks again to all who helped. This is a detailed report for those who love details like I do!
When we woke up, it was raining below in Lautebrunnen and very cloudy at Manlichen. The Jungfraujoch live cam was busted. What to do?
We decided to take the train to Kleine Scheidegg and see how it looked. This was a beautiful ride: You want to sit right but can also stand as some of the windows open for great photos!
It was nice at the station and we asked how it looked on top: very clear also! So we used our Jungfrau passes to buy tickets for $60, 50% off. (It would be $90 or 25% off with the STP.)
We asked if we should reserve seats and the attendant said it wasn’t necessary-hmmm. We boarded a few minutes early but they held the train and PACKED them in, leaving about 10 minutes late—our first late Swiss train!
You want to sit right going up as the Jungfrau and other mountains soon appear in spectacularly close fashion.
The train stops at Eismeer inside a tunnel for 5 minutes. They’re not explicit but you are encouraged to pop out and take a pix of the glaciers through a panoramic window. There also are toilets there.
Sometimes people will take your seat when you do this. But the rest of the trip is very short.
Upon arrival you weave through the tracks due to renovations. Then you get to the first overlook area and the elevator to the Sphinx Observatory. (Jungfraujoch lists 10 tour stops mostly in a loop.)
Wow! Top of Europe indeed! You’re at 11,332 feet with glaciers all around you and Monch and Jungfrau most prominent. (Jungfrau is immediately to the right of the observatory; You can’t really see Eiger from here.)
Remember to go slowly due to the altitude, drink fluids, sit down if you feel lightheaded, etc.
We went next to the trail to Monchsjoch hut, the highest occupied hut in Switzerland. Just walking out onto the Aletsch glacier was magical with pristine snow and far fewer tourists. There also are some “fun” activities here like golfing! Much nicer than the plateau, another tour stop.
The air was so crisp, the silence serene, the beauty surreal en route to Monchsjoch. It’s fairly short but took me 51 minutes due to the altitude and incline. I made lots of photo stops and panting stops to let my heart rate calm down.
The hut is a cafe and hostel apparently. They ask you to take off your shoes before entering, providing clogs. It’s a very dark space and I almost left wearing someone else’s boots!
They don’t want you to picnic inside so I snacked outside, used their toilet, and headed out. It was a very easy 30 minutes back. All together I may have seen 50-75 people on this lovely trek.
Back to the Jungfraujoch for a quick breeze through the ice palace (in the same tunnel as the alpine sensation), out on the plateau, then snaked through the shops and crowds and back to the train.
Wonderful experience that shouldn’t be missed!