Day 2: Hörnlihütte

of huts and high mountains

Today we have taken the cable car to Schwarzsee and gone towards Hörnlihütte, at the foothills of the Matterhorn.

That is the last stop for those who have the balls courage to try to tackle the ascent to the top of this mountain. They arrive during the day, sleep at Horniütte, and get up at 2 in the morning. It seems it takes them a while to get ready because they set off to the peak at 4.

Hörnlihütte | last patch of grass | Schwarzsee | Matterhorn at night

Once they leave this hut, there is only one more man made building along the path: Solvayhütte — the emergency hut. It has room for 15 people and a radio, and it’s only for real emergencies.

The weather is unpredictable and changeable even in Summer and not everyone is as experienced as they should be to conquer the Matterhorn so the hut it utilised more often than it should. Sadly too many people take this ascent lightly, the graveyard of Zermatt backs my words.

We have then tried to go to Trockener Steg but we haven’t been able to find the path and we have given up. Nothing but rocks and stones, no grass at all, which makes it difficult to follow steps.

But the truth is we were tired after yesterday’s walk, so we weren’t dying for climbing today. We have gone down to the Schwarzsee lake and have lunch behind the chapel, the only spot where the sun didn’t shine.

In the afternoon we have gone back to Zermatt, taken a shower, and wandered about the village. I’ve tried to find a tripod but I’ve only found three and none of them would’ve stood the weight of my camera. That’s what happens when your suitcase is smaller than your tripod. I’ll have to come back another year.

The weather remains sunny and hot. It’s unbelievable how being this high there is no need for long trousers and sleeves. 25 degrees in the afternoon. Who would’ve believed it snowed just 5 days ago?

Size doesn’t matter

Matterhorn from Furgg

Even if the view from the Gornergrat is the best known one, the Matterhorn remains at your view range at all times, no matter where you are. It’s not the tallest one (Dufourspitze 4,634m, Dom 4,545m, Lyskamm 4,527m, Weisshorn 4,506m, Matterhorn 4,478m), but it doesn’t have any other mountain around to overshadow it. Its particular shape helps too.


  • 15 days and counting
  • Bilbao to Geneva
  • Day 1: Gornergrat-Zermatt
  • Day 2: Schwarzsee
  • Day 3: Klein Matterhorn
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