Patrouille des Glaciers
The Patrouille des Glaciers, meaning 'Glacier Patrol' is a staggering challenge of a race. Originated in 1943 and still organised by the Swiss Army.
Starting in Zermatt each team of three must run, climb and ski their way to Verbier and then on to Arolla, a distance of 53 kilometres, although it is considered to be more like a journey of 110 kilometres. For the lesser of the super-heroes that attempt this challenge there is also a shorter race, from Arolla to Verbier, a mere 27 kilometres.
The race requires months if not years of training, as parts of the journey are treacherous, involving walking over crevasses. To prevent losing a member of the team into the glacier the three challengers must be tied together and walk in a V shape, with the least experienced out in front, so if they slip through the snow layer into a crevasse, the other two can dig in their heels and pull them out. This isn't for the faint-hearted!
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