Looking for an adventurous, romantic, high-mountain train ride? Board the historic Furka Cogwheel Steam Railroad in central Switzerland.

Connecting Realp (Uri Canton) to Gletsch (Valais Canton), the Furka Cogwheel Steam Railroad ascends the Furka Pass. Once a part of the scenic Glacier Express route, the Furka Cogwheel opened as a historic railroad line in 1992. Rising more than 7,000 feet, the tracks in winter are buried under 40 feet of snow, making spring snow removal a serious challenge.

Trains are operated by volunteers and funded by ticket fares, stockholders, and a supporting association. The following journeys are recommended by Stefan Gretener, a traffic dispatcher with Zentralbahn railroad.

Journey #1

Depart Lucerne at 07:21; change trains in Göschenen; arrive Realp at 09:18; depart Realp at 09:50 by steam train; 20-minute stopover at Furka station; arrive Gletsch 11:50; depart Gletsch at 13:46 by postal bus; no stopover at Grimsel Pass; arrive Meiringen at 15:05. (July 22 to Oct. 2, Fri.-Sun., and daily, July 11 to Aug. 18)

Journey #2

Depart Lucerne at 11:21; change trains in Göschenen; arrive Realp at 13:18; depart Realp at 13:45 by steam train; 20-minute stopover at Furka station; arrive Gletsch at 15:35; depart Gletsch at 15:46 by postal bus; no stopover at Grimsel Pass; arrive Meiringen at 17:05. (July 8 to Sept. 3, Fridays and Saturdays only)

Journey #3

Depart Lucerne at 07:21; change trains in Göschenen; arrive Realp at 09:18; depart Realp at 09:50 by steam train; 20-minute stopover at Furka station; arrive Gletsch at 11:50; depart Gletsch at 12:25 or 14:45 by postal bus; arrive Oberwald at 12:40 or 15:00; depart Oberwald at 13:12 or 15:12 by train; change in Göschenen and Arth-Goldau; arrive Lucerne at 15:38 or 17:38. (July 22 to October 2, Friday-Sunday, and daily, July 11 to August 18)

Journey #4

Departure in Meiringen at 11:00 by postal bus; no stopover on top of Grimsel Pass; arrive Gletsch at 12:19; depart Gletsch at 14:00 by steam train; 20-minute stopover at Furka station; arrive Realp at 15:45; departure in Realp at 16:32 by train; change trains in Göschenen; arrival in Lucerne at 18:38. (July 22 to October 2, Friday-Sunday, and daily, July 11 to August 18)

Journey #5

Departure in Meiringen at 11:00 by postal bus; no stopover on top of Grimsel Pass; arrive Gletsch at 12:19; depart Gletsch at 14:00 by steam train; 20-minute stopover at Furka station; arrival in Realp at 15:45; departure in Realp at 16:18 by train; change trains in Brig, Spiez and Interlaken Ost; arrival in Meiringen at 20:45. (July 22 to October 2, Friday-Sunday, and daily, July 11 to August 18)

Journey #6

Departure in Meiringen at 09:00 by postal bus; stopover of 30 minutes on top of Grimsel Pass; arrival in Gletsch at 10:44; departure from Gletsch at 11:00 by steam train; 20-minute stopover at Furka station; arrival in Realp at 12:40; departure in Realp at 13:32 or 15:32 by train; change trains in Göschenen and Arth-Goldau; arrival in Lucerne at 15:38 or 17:38. (July 9 to September 4, Fridays and Saturdays only)

Check current timetables when planning your trip, as buses and the steam train may not run daily. The Swiss Pass is valid on postal buses, but on tourist lines like Grimsel Pass, a supplement of up to CHF 15 per person applies. The Swiss Pass is not valid on the Furka Cogwheel Steam Railroad.

Tickets can be purchased at the steam railroad stations in Realp and Gletsch. A one-way ticket is CHF 58.00 per person, CHF 93.00 per person roundtrip. Kids up to 16 years travel free of charge when accompanied by one parent. Mr. Gretener strongly recommends a seat reservation on the postal bus over Grimsel Pass (tel. 0900 304 304, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>) and on the Furka Cogwheel Steam Railroad.

For more information visit myswitzerland.com/en-us/full-steam-ahead-on-the-furka-pass.html