This seven-day guided trail running tour starts in Guarda, a beautiful, quiet village in Switzerland’s Engadine region, then transfers to the mountain town of Pontresina, a trail running paradise surrounded by impressive peaks. As our trip comes to a close, we’ll have a chance to run Engadine Ultraks, one of Switzerland’s great new trail races in this stunning region. Run the Alps reserves entries for this race, so if you like to trail race, you’ll have your choice of which of three events to enter. Finish with a special night in Soglio, in the Italian-speaking Val Bregaglia south of the Engadine.
We’re delighted to offer this special trail running adventure with noted US ultra-runner, Krissy Moehl. Coach, author, and winner of dozens of ultra-trail races, Krissy brings a warm and inclusive spirit to the sport that is perfectly in sync with Run the Alps’ philosophy.
Our typical day starts with a continental buffet breakfast at our hotel, with delicious fresh baked bread and croissants, local meats and cheeses, cereal, fruit, coffee and juice, giving us the energy needed for a day of trail running. Soon we’ll be out on the trail, running through the Alps. Options exist to lengthen or shorten each day, to suit a variety of trail running abilities. We’ll provide a variety of trail running refueling options for the day, too.
During our runs, we’ll stop in at mountain huts and cafes for fresh-baked treats, take time for photos, and enjoy our time on the trails. Most runs finish around 4 pm, giving you time to wash up, relax, and take in some sights around town before dinner. Most nights, we’ll enjoy dinner together at our hotel or another local restaurant. These are usually multi-course feasts, featuring both local and international specialties like chicken, fish, or cheese fondue. Our hotels enjoy excellent reputations for their fine cuisine. We’ll leave one dinner free in Pontresina for you to explore on your own.
Guarda – You’ll arrive in Switzerland, then transfer by train to our meeting point in Guarda. Often billed as “Switzerland’s prettiest village,” Guarda fits the description. The buildings are amazing – with etched floral designs on the homes – and there is a timeless quality to the village and surroundings that is often missing in today’s world. There are great mountain views too of course!
The Hotel Piz Buin is a comfortable, friendly hotel on the edge of town, our home here for many years. They have newly renovated rooms, and many comfortable common areas to relax in.
Pontresina – We’ll start with a great trail run around Guarda, running through meadows above town. Routes are always up to the guide, the group and the weather, but perhaps we will run up to the Piz Buin hut, tucked below the dramatic walls of it’s namesake mountain, before returning on loop trails to Guarda.
After returning to Guarda, we’ll hop on the train for a 1 hour trip through the Engadine to Pontresina. Pontresina is much larger than Guarda, but is still a small, quiet mountain town. Here we stay at the Hotel Steinbock, a classy 3-star hotel with great meals and free access to the wonderful pool and spa at the neighboring Hotel Walther. This will be our comfortable home for the next 4 nights.
Pontresina – There are many lovely, wild trails near Pontresina that make for great trail running! One of our favorites leads to the Morteratsch glacier, an impressive destination, where a moderate climb to the Boval hut rewards you with panoramic views of white-capped peaks in every direction.
Pontresina – Today, we’ll rest in preparation for taking part in the festivities of the Engadin St. Moritz Ultraks trail race series. You’ll have the option of a full day of rest and enjoying the beautiful Pontresina region, or trail running on a portion of one of the three trail race routes.
Dinner is left free tonight so you can explore on your own, or prepare for race day in whatever manner you prefer.
Pontresina – Today, it’s time to take in one of the truly superb trail races in the Alps. Engadin-St. Moritz Ultraks features three courses: 16 km, 30 km, and 46 km. When you sign up for the trip, you’ll have the option of selecting any one of these three races. Or, if you like, take in the lively atmosphere of the race from any point along the course. We’ll even bring the cowbells for you to ring!
With race day concluded, we’ll share our stories of the event over a celebratory dinner on our last night in Pontresina.
Soglio – We have one more special night in store though. Soglio is a gem of a village in the nearby Val Bregaglia, a cobblestoned, Italian-speaking town clinging to a hillside near the Swiss/Italian border. We’ll have a number of options for our run to the Val Bregaglia today. The first stretch leads from Pontresina along the paternoster lakes strung out from St Moritz to Maloja along the upper Engadine region. From Maloja, the trail drops steeply at first, becoming a gentle descending traverse through meadows and chestnut trees to Soglio.
In Soglio, we stay at the Palazzo Salis, a wonderfully atmospheric converted palace dating from the 1600’s. They have unique, historic rooms, armaments and suits of armor dotting the hallways, and lush and inviting gardens to relax in. Its makes for an unforgettable night.
depart – Today, we take our leave of the Engadine. After breakfast at our hotel, we’ll say our good-byes and leave for our post-trip destinations. Busses depart Soglio for St Moritz, where you can catch a train back to Zurich.