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Sphinx Observatory and Gletscherausgang

Location

Kantonbern Map

Last Visited: 2006

The Sphinx Observatory and Aussichtsterrasse

The Sphinx Observatory and Aussichtsterrasse

The hermetically sealed main complex at the Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe would be a stuffy airless sort of place even at sea-level. At altitude I was heartily glad to get back out in the fresh air after a quick lunch (cheap by UK motorway service area standards).

The Sphinx Observatory area is reached by a another lift near the other end the railway station which whisks you up to the metal and glass stairwell complex that surrounds the western side of the ridge.

From here you walk out onto the old Observatory terrace with its Faraday cage of wires to protect the visitors from lightening strikes, and a set of metal gangways round the outside of the buildings that some visitors seemed to find scary. The views are splendid though.

Back down at the bottom of the lift is another tunnel leading to the Gletscherausgang and the ice fields at the head of the Aletschgletscher. Here there are the husky pulled sleigh rides and a number of winter sports. It is also the start of the trail to the Mönchsjochhütte three-quarters of an hour or so away.

The altitude was beginning to get to me though, so it was time to go down.