Today my legs are feeling a bit burnt out from all of the powder skiing yesterday, and the snow conditions have reverted to pretty mediocre – everything melted and froze over night, so it’s ice in the morning and slush in the afternoon – so only a little skiing today, with frequent photo stops, and then some exploring of the other tourist sites available up on the glacier.
The second gondola I take goes directly into the side of one of the mountains jutting above the glacier, and provides incredible views, but is quite crowded with people and their skis.
I take a too many pictures from the panorama platform.
You’re probably getting bored of breathtaking views of the Swiss and Italian Alps. I was, so I grab some lunch and then descend into the Glacier Palace. Taking an elevator through rock and walking a short distance through a carved tunnel and I enter a series of man-made tunnels built into the Matterhorn Glacier. Everything is mounted in the ice. There is some ice wine in barrels aging there. Lots of ice sculptures. This is probably the coolest place I’ve been, the feeling of walking inside of something so ancient as a glacier, but so ephemeral as ice is amazing.
After coming down from the mountain, I wander around Zermatt, grab some snacks, and try to figure out how to ship my skis back to the US from Zermatt. Turns out the answer is: I can’t. The train station does shipping anything, but only within Switzerland and Germany. The post office will ship things to the US, but only things smaller than 150cm on a side, and my skis are longer than that. So… anyone want a free pair of skis? You’ll have to pick them up in Zermatt. I think at this point in the life of my skis and my travels they’re not worth lugging around (or probably even worth what I paid to fly them here, but too late for that).