Start / Finnish: Innertkirchen/Wassen
Highest point: 2260 m
Open end-to-end: June to November
Road condition: paved, good.
Susten Pass is a mountain pass in the Swiss Alps. The pass road connects Innertkirchen in the canton of Bern with Wassen in the canton of Uri.
Opened in 1945, it was the first pass road to be purpose-built for vehicular traffic. With its 26 bridges and tunnels it was regarded at the time as one of the most beautiful roads in Europe.
Susten Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2.264 m above the sea level, located in the Swiss Alps. The road over the pass is asphalted. It was built between 1938 and 1945 and it links the Reuss Valley at the foot of the Gotthard Mountain with the Hasli Valley in the Bernese Oberland, and the village of Wassen in Canton Uri with Innertkirchen in Canton Bern. A 300 meters long tunnel crosses the pass at 2.224 meters.
There are 2 routes to reach the summit: from the eastern side from the town of Wassen or the western side from the town of Innertkirchen. Starting from Wassen, the ascent is 17.4 km long. Over this distance, the elevation gain is 1308-meter high. And starting from Innertkirchen, the Passo del Susten ascent is 27.7 km long. Over this distance, the elevation gain is 1602-meter high. The eastern and western approaches are approximately the same difficultly with the eastern one being a bit longer but flatter.
The pass is popular with tourists, especially for the views of the Stein Glacier on the south side. The Stein Glacier is a 4 km long glacier situated in the Urner Alps in the canton of Berne in Switzerland. In 1973 it had an area of 6.06 km2. As the pass goes through Berne, you have lots to visit here. The Bernese Oberland constitutes the north side of the Bernese Alps and the west side of the Urner Alps within the canton of Bern. The highest mountain in the Bernese Alps is the Finsteraarhorn at 4,274 metres, but the best known mountains are Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau.
The well-known hiking and ski resorts in the eastern Oberland are located around Interlaken and the Jungfrau, such as car-free Mürren and Wengen in the Lauterbrunnen valley, and Grindelwald. The whole area is very mountainous, with steep cliffs, many glaciers, and countless waterfalls. It is renowned for its scenic beauty and the charm of the small Swiss villages that dot the area. As a result of this, tourism is one of the main sources of income in the Bernese Oberland. The region also has an extensive train network as well as many cable cars and funiculars, with the highest train station in Europe at the Jungfraujoch and the longest gondola cableway in the world from Grindelwald to the Männlichen.
TIPS FOR TRAVEL
- In the canton of Berne there are lots of castles and fortresses that you can visit such as the Bremgarten Castle, Felsenburg, Holligen Castle.
- If you are looking for an accommodation we recommend the Steingletscher Hotel.
- Near Innertkirchen the Susten Pass road meets the Grimsel Pass road. At this juncture we recommend an excursion to the Aare Gorge that breaks through a mighty rock wall - a vestige of the Ice Age.