The 70th most popular snowboarding destination in Switzerland.
Sunday 17 December 2017 07:00 GMT
Southeast of Zurich near Davos, the Schatzalp-Strela ski area is part of the Davos-Klosters ski region. The Schatzalp-Strela ski area has 7 pistes served by 3 lifts accessing a vertical descent of 800m. But, most of the time you’ll be doing quick laps from the Schatzalp mid-station from the Strelapass summit for 500m of descent.
Located in the eastern Swiss canton of Graubünden (aka Grisons), the Davos Klosters ski region consists of six ski areas in the Rhaetian Alps spread along the Landwasser valley. Lining both sides of the Landwasser valley the six ski areas include: Parsenn Gotschna, Jakobshorn, Madrisa, Rinerhorn, Schatzalp-Strela and Pischa. Overall, there are 110 pistes totaling 318km that are served by 55 lifts (27 drag lifts) with a maximum vertical descent of 2,030m. The Parsenn Gotschna ski area is the largest and most accessible from both Davos and Klosters, Jacobshorn is popular for its freestyle options, and Rinerhorn is known for its off-piste freeriding. The Davos Klosters ski region is infamous for all of the off-piste freeriding opportunties.
Located just above Davos Platz, the Schatzalp-Strela ski area is a much smaller, gentle ski area for the valley. While considered a family-friendly place, it also happens to be the start of one of the major backcountry snowboarding adventures, the Mederger Flue. The Mederger Flue starts from the summit of Strelapass (2350m) and follows the route north towards Chörbshorn where you’ll encounter some of the most beautiful alpine terrain (guide recommended). If you are just spending the morning doing laps, don’t miss grabbing lunch up at Bergrestaurant Strela Alp - it’s worth it!
A big question when coming to the Davos-Klosters ski region is where to stay. While families on long holiday may choose to rent a house in the inexpensive outer villages, most snowboarders will probably want to stay close to the lifts. So, that leaves Davos Dorf, Davos Platz or Klosters. Combined, Davos Dorf and Davos Platz are a massive city with newer, block-style buildings and high-traffic. It is relatively new in European terms since it was only settled about 150 years ago. There are plenty of modern amenities, but there isn’t that quintessential authentic Swiss village feel nor the quaint restaurants you may be seeking out of a Swiss vacation. But, the two best ski areas are accessible from Davos (Parsenn and Jakobshorn). If you plan to stay in Davos, keep in mind the entire city is booked annually near the end of January for the World Economic Forum, so avoid coming then. Lastly, even with all its modern amenities, its still not really know for its party scene.
A better answer may be to stay in Klosters. Located further east, the smaller village of Klosters is much more of a typical quaint Swiss village that makes a great base for a longer snowboarding vacation. And, right from town you can access both Parsenn and Madrisa. From either town, there are free ski buses that interconnect to all six ski areas.
If you do stay in Davos and are looking for some apres ski action, then check out the Piano Bar, the Cabanna Club or the Ex-bar.
To reach the snowboarding in Davos from Zurich, the best bet is by train. It’s a 2.5 hour ride with a single transfer in Landquart. This is the same train line that also services St Moritz, which is 30 minutes further along the line. If you are coming from the airport and don’t want to use the trains, you can always use the Davos Express transfer bus service.
To reach this area from Zurich by car, head southeast on Route A3 to Landquart, and then southeast on Route 28 into Davos.
Overall, Schatzalp-Strela is the 70th most popular snowboard & freeride destination of all 80 snowboarding resorts in Switzerland. Several of the better snowboarding resorts are nearby Schatzalp-Strela including Parsenn Gotschna, Jakobshorn, Madrisa, Rinerhorn and Pischa.