Following the success of the komoot Women’s Torino Nice Rally and the komoot Women’s Montañas Vacías, the german route planning experts are expanding they’re community events inviting women, trans and non-binary riders with a new edition in Switzerland! Well, to be fair komoot slowly finishes their transition from expert route planning platform to full on outdoor sports community platform. And while doing so they are making our small community far more inclusive.
This time komoot teamed up with the Bern, Switzerland based women’s cycling community gravELLE Club. The call for women, trans and non-binary to come to the “land of marmots” was followed by 20 women! The Route? 210 kilometers and 5700 meters of climbing through the Swiss National Park. Not your average weekend ride for sure!
Switzerland delivers the scenery in Marmot land
The first swiss edition of the komoot women’s weekender couldn’t have chosen a more beautiful setting for the riders.
Riders started in Zernez, the door to the Swiss Nationalpark, and rode over gravel paths through stunning alpine scenery and pine forests. Since these events are unsupported, it was entirely up to each rider whether they preferred to camp or stay in a guesthouse or hotel. Since camping is forbidden in der Schweizer Nationalpark, anyone choosing to camp was forced to do so at the official campsites in Scuol, Livigno and Zernez. Riders could also go at their own pace and choose to ride alone or in a group.
What’s the facts for the route?
The route consists mainly of a loop south of the Inn River, which rises in the Engadine before flowing into the Danube five hundred kilometres later in Passau. The start and finish of the route is Zernez. Zernez is also known as the gateway to the Swiss National Park, has good transport connections and offers everything you could wish for before and after such an adventure, from a nice campsite to a delicious pizzeria.
Says Sara Bukies a komoot ambassador.
- Full route: 210km Elevation: + 5 700 m
- Campgrounds: 3
- Marmots: countless
- Terrain: Gravel tracks / Off road / Paved.
- 3 days riding / 3 camping
- Unique spine views and aesthetics from a largely untouched bio-diverse area
- The route is most suitable for gravel and mountain bikes.
An Open Invitation to Female Adventure Cyclists
The goal behind such events is to connect female adventure cyclists with each other. In Switzerland, given its diverse cultures, languages and geography - an open invitation to all women to join the adventure, regardless of their level of experience, skill-sets and equipment, is what counts the most.
The success of the past komoot Women’s Rally’s showed the great potential of these events. However, with the mission to make adventure accessible to everyone, we felt the need and responsibility to create shorter, bikepacking-beginner-friendly and local versions. The whole point of these events is to bring women together to support each other, learn from each other and to foster a sense of community and connection in the long-term. Komoot is a huge supporter of access and diversity within adventure cycling, we see a large proportion of female riders logging adventure cycling Tours on komoot and we want to support them where we can!
Says Isabel Riffel, community manager for the DACH Region at komoot.
It is crucial to offer infrastructure and some form of safe space to get a movement started. The Women’s Weekenders do just that and the ingenious integrations of shortcuts makes the route accessible for all levels of riders. Even beginners.
This is reflected in feedback from participants as well!
I had an amazing time at the graveELLE and komoot Women’s Weekender in Switzerland. The spirit of the group was great and everyone was being so nice. The route seemed quite challenging to me and I wasn’t sure I would be able to make it. But having the support of the group and the possibility for pre-planned shortcut options, I decided to just go for it. It turned out, I didn’t actually need any of the shortcuts in the end!
Gabrielle Antal, Switzerland
What do you think about the series? Would you like to sign up for one of the next versions? Where should the next local version of the komoot Women’s Weekender be? And most of all: Is there still room for improvement? What is missing in your opinion? Let us know, we are very excited to see this series picking up and hopefully very soon it will be very normal to ride along a lot more women, trans and non-binary riders in bikepacking events. 🙌