Hoch-Ybrig Ski Safari: 03/11/16

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Hoch-Ybrig Ski Safari: 03/11/16

Postby jamesdeluxe » Tue Mar 15, 2016 5:23 am

For my final ski day in Schwyz, I only had a few hours of turns left in my aching legs, so I decided to try the ski safari that connects Mythen with neighboring Hoch-Ybrig (pronounced HOKE EEH BRIG), which isn't on the regional Swiss Knife Valley ski ticket (unless you buy a season pass). The route claims to be nine miles in length but felt longer. The point of something like this isn't necessarily to ski challenging terrain or shralp powder, but to travel a healthy distance on skis and admire the beautiful scenery. You get one lift ride on certain lifts that enable you to complete the circuit in a little less than three hours, more if you stop for a meal.

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Skies were bright blue until the early afternoon when clouds moved in, which would've made the safari a lot less interesting, so I'm glad that I got out early.

Back to the Handgruobi t-bar 100 yards away from my hotel for the ride up:
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Beer tent at Grossenboden:
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Continuing uphill:
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Brünellistock and the first Ski Safari sign:
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A fork in the road:
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I had a hard copy of the ski-safari map above in my pocket, but I went right by the safari sign that was partially buried and had to hike back uphill:
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I followed a few other people skied by who seemed to know what they were doing:
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You head downhill into the village of Oberiberg, which is at the bottom of the ski area Hoch-Ybrig:
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And walk across a parking lot to one of the base lifts -- my first chair (high-speed too!) in four days. How's that for hardcore? :lol:
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The "hometown" brand -- certainly the ski you see most frequently here:
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Mid-mountain restaurant:
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While Mythen is predominantly south-facing, Hoch-Ybrig is completely north-facing so the offpiste was in nice shape.
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It's also at a higher elevation than Mythen and has a healthy percentage of above-treeline/more challenging terrain along with high-speed chairs: thus, a more mainstream ski area than its old-school neighbor.
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All of that ridgeline terrain is lift-served:
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Continuing to follow the Ski Safari signs:
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And start the 3,100-vert downhill toward the village of Illgau:
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"You're now leaving the Hoch-Ybrig ski area"


Literally, an "over the river and through the woods" affair:
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The village of Illgau in the distance:
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A short uphill walk:
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Into the village:
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No high-speed lifts here -- rather, a gondola from 1955, but as the sign tells us: fully renovated in 1983!
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For emergencies: a phone powered by a crank!
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In the home stretch:
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A fine day to hang laundry:
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Finally, I exit the woods at the Handgruobi base area:
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And glide into my hotel:
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Another great Alps trip in the can. Couldn't have timed it any better if I'd tried and the people here have been fantastic.
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