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Tour Stories

What’s a Run the Alps guided trip like?

Check out our Tour Stories!

After each trip, the guide shares stories and photos via our Run the Alps Tour Stories series. Enjoy reading about our trail running adventures through the Alps, and drop us a note if you have any questions!

(Photo: Martina Valmassoi)

Courtney and Crew do the Dolomites

October 2-7, 2023

Courtney Dauwalter and Kevin Schmidt were an additional attraction besides the Dolomites themselves. Our group shared extraordinary running in the Val Gardena and Val di Funes with additional staff along for the fun and photography from Martina Valmassoi and Matteo Agreiter.

(Photo: Sam Hill)

Tour du Mont-Blanc: A Geological Joy Box

September 14-23, 2023

The trail running season is getting close to an end in the Alps, and we squeezed in a fantastic final Tour du Mont-Blanc trip until we start up again next summer.

(Photo: Toni Spasenoski)

September in the Alps: Fall is a Great time to be Here

September 11-17, 2023

Our annual fall trail running trip starts out in Chamonix, France, the Alps hotspot for trail running and then makes a visit to Champéry in the Swiss Alps. Runners have the choice to take part in, or cheer on, the Alps’ oldest trail race, DDM Trail, on a beautiful course around the Dents du Midi.


(Photo: Sam Hill)

Mirnavator in the Alps

Sep 8 - 17, 2023

Mirna Valerio, “the Mirnavator,” brought together a group of twelve wonderful women who are not often seen as typical trail runners due to their speed, body size, or ethnicity. And we all had a blast running trails in France, Italy, and Switzerland.

(Photo: Cam Bevan)

Italian Dolomites with Team Egg, Speck, and Potatoes

September 7-14, 2023

The Italian Dolomites are home to  some of the best trail running in Europe. On our tour, we run inn to inn, taking in spectacular views, and enjoy hearty local cuisine in the scattered villages.

(Photo: Mark Brightwell)

Via Valais: All Sunshine after the Snow

September 3-12, 2023

The Via Valais is the most challenging trip offered by Run the Alps. The route travels through steep, rugged and remote mountain terrain, while climbing and descending over 2000m daily. As you can imagine, the views are outstanding.

(Photo: Sam Hill)

Tour du Mont-Blanc: Extra Buzz for the 20th Anniversary UTMB Mont-Blanc®

August 28-September 6, 2023

Our own Tour du Mont-Blanc happened during UTMB Mont-Blanc® week and the atmosphere in Chamonix and on the trails was electric.

(Photo: Mark Brightwell)

Matterhorn Ultraks: Coming in Hot

August 22-28, 2023

We had a fun crew of seven runners, including five members of a 2021 Tour du Mont-Blanc trip who decided to have a reunion tour! This group came together to run in Leukerbad and Zermatt, Switzerland with the option to race in the Matterhorn Ultraks.

(Photo: Kim Strom)

Inaugural Grand Bernese Oberland Traverse

August 10-21, 2023

The inaugural Grand Bernese Oberland Traverse was a great success! Crossing this section of the Swiss Alps we saw the region’s most famous peaks, bluest lakes, and deepest valleys, plus plenty of cows, sheep, and goats grazing the hillside pastures.

(Photo: Kim Strom)

Bernese Oberland: Going the Extra Miles

July 28 - August 3, 2023

With a mix of world class trails, dramatic scenery, great company, and delicious trailside snacks, our Bernese Oberland tour kept us adding extra helpings of each of the above. This was Run the Alps’ second Bernese Oberland tour of the 2023 season.

(Photo: Kim Strom)

Bernese Oberland: Geraniums, Playgrounds, Swims, and Wiggles

July 16-22, 2023

Our group set out from the beautiful mountain chalet at Schwarzwaldalp where we’d spent a peaceful first night with the sounds of bells from cows lazily grazing in the pastures. We had the next week to explore the best trails around Switzerland’s Bernese Oberland region.

(Photo: Kim Strom)

Eiger Trail: Fortune Favors the Bold

July 10 - 16, 2023

After a week of running, bonding, and storm dodging, race day dawned with perfectly clear skies and hot weather for the races at Eiger Ultra Trail by UTMB.®

(Photo: Aleksandra Janiak)

Strong Enough: Women’s Trail Camp with Meg Mackenzie

July 4-9, 2023

Accompanied by professional trail runner Meg Mackenzie, we shared a wonderful week with a group of amazing ladies!

Tour du Mont-Blanc (Photo: Sam Hill)

Tour du Mont-Blanc: A Culinary Tour as Much as a Running Tour

June 29 - July 8, 2023

Food as always plays such an important part of any Run the Alps Tour du Mont-Blanc trip. There are so many cafes, buvettes, and refuges to stop at en route, and the fruit tarts, cakes, cookies, crepes, and hot meals make this a culinary tour as much as a running tour.

two runners Val Ferret

Running super smooth trail in the Val Ferret. (Photo: Toni Spasenoski)

A Mont Blanc Trail Running Experience

June 19-26, 2023

With an intimate group of just two guests, we started out the trail running season on part of the iconic Tour du Mont-Blanc or UTMB® race course. Our favorite climb was up to Grand Col Ferret from Arnouva.

blacknose sheep above Zermatt

Petting the friendly blacknose sheep above Zermatt. Photo: Steph Lefferts.

Via Valais: The Runner’s Haute Route

September 4-13, 2022

The Via Valais tour was, simply put, fantastic. The route can’t be compared. We saw ibex up close, and picked wild blueberries all week. The weather was perfect and had the smells of the season changing to autumn.

Matterhorn trail running

Looking back to the Matterhorn from Stellisee lake on the way up to Fluealp from Sunnegga. (Photo: Becki Penrose)

Matterhorn Ultraks: Dream Trails

August 15-21, 2022

Our group of six spent two days in Leukerbad, Switzerland ascending the cliffs of the Gemmi-pass. Then we headed across the Rhône valley to Zermatt to continue our tour. At the end of the week of trail running, we supported the Matterhorn Ultraks racers in our group.

mountain beer

Brew with a view. (Photo: Ellen Bradley)

Our TMB During the UTMB®

August 22-31, 2022

The TMB is unfailingly a memorable loop. One thing that made this TMB stand out was that the UTMB races were also happening, and so the trails were stacked with running stars.

View toward Mont Blanc on TMB

Pause to enjoy the view above Chamonix. (Photo: Sam Hill)

Coffee, Cake and Crêpes Fuel the Tour du Mont Blanc

August 1-10, 2022

The Tour du Mont Blanc, “TMB,” is a classic, and it always catches people unaware of how much up and down there really is along the route. Cake, coffee, and crêpes were the center point of each day and they helped fuel us for the climbs.

Trail running Bernese Oberland

Ice Cream, Cute dogs and Cows: Highlights of a Bernese Oberland Trail Running Tour

July 17-23, 2022

Our group of six runners and two guides explored some classic Swiss trails around Wengen, Lauterbrunnen, Gimmelwald, Murren, and Grindelwald. New trails and views each day!

Eiger Trail Tour, Grindelwald

Eiger Trail Tour, Grindelwald. Ready for the Ultra Trail

We Gotta have More Cowbell! Run the Alps Eiger Trail Tour

July 11-17, 2022

For the days leading up to the Eiger Ultra Trail race events, we ran around the high village of Murren, visited a Swiss “candlelight” hotel, and Lobhornhütte, a classic Swiss Alpine Club hut. Our runs also took us to Grosse Scheidegg, a high pass above Grindelwald.

Meg Mackenzie trail Camp 2022

Women’s Trail Running Camp with Meg Mackenzie

June 28 - July 2, 2022

Run the Alps was pleased to offer a special trail running camp this summer – just for women! Based in Chamonix, France and Courmayeur, Italy, the week of running trails was hosted by The North Face athlete and Run the Alps ambassador, Meg Mackenzie.


Running along Seceda. Photo: Bruno Yates

Off on the Dolomite Foot: Run the Alps Season Opener 2022

June 12-19, 2022

This year’s June Dolomites trip was led by the talented Bruno Yates and Cam Bevan. The group consisted of these two guides and five motivated and interesting guests: Andrei, Anna, Christina, Linsey and Jay. The tour took in the sights, sounds and strudels of the spellbinding Val Gardena.

Two trail runners stopped with mountains in background.

Cole and John, taking a break along the Italian Val Ferret.

The Americans are Here! (It’s About Time.)

Jun 28 - July 5, 2021

A diehard father and son team were our first guests back to the Alps in over a year. Their persistence paid off, with a quiet trip trail running around the northern half of the Tour du Mont-Blanc– and a chance to trail race in Chamonix, France!

Trail runners from the back on a single trail through a pasture in the Alps with snowy mountains in the background

Trail running towards Mont Blanc – high above Le Tour. (Photo: Grant Fulton.)

A Special Tour du Mont-Blanc We Won’t Soon Forget

July 1-10, 2021

After 16 months of a global pandemic, the first Run the Alps group returns to trail run the iconic route around the Mont Blanc massif. It was a special moment for all involved!

Champery, Dents du Midi

Running down from the Col de Coux, the Dents du Midi visible in the distance. (Photo: Emily Geldard)

Chamonix to Champéry – a taste of the Alps and the Dents du Midi trail race

September 9-15, 2019

We were blessed with perfect weather to experience the best of Chamonix, France and Champéry, Switzerland. Our trip ended with the historic Dents du Midi trail race– including a few well-earned podium positions!

Run the Alps in Zermatt, with Matterhorn behind

Running down from Gornergrat, the Matterhorn high in the distance (Photo: Mark Brightwell).

Run the Alps’ Inaugural Via Valais: Snow and Sun amid the High Alps

September 5-14, 2019

This year, Run the Alps offered a September guided trail run over the Via Valais, a route designed by our friends at ALPSinsight. Wandering through Switzerland’s Valais Alps, the route is high, wild, and challenging.

Back in the Chamonix Valley, running through Tré-le-champ (Photo: Jo Sims).

Trail running around Mont Blanc with the UTMB babes

26th Aug - 4th Sept, 2019

Our last tour of the season featured the self-appointed “UTMB® Babes,” with Senior Guide Simon – or is it Simone? – leading the charge. The UTMB® race vibe filled the air in Chamonix and Courmayeur. We ran through Switzerland, then finished in Chamonix with cold beers and a memorable farewell dinner


Y-M-C-A at the Col Grand Ferret and other Tour du Mont-Blanc Highlights

August 4-13 2019

Our band of merry trail runners coalesced nicely in Chamonix, and from there on it was all trail running, cafes, and – yes – even some Sound of Music. Here’s our story!

In and Out of Big Views in Switzerland’s Berner Oberland

July 28 - August 3, 2019

Immaculate trails, towering peaks, quaint villages and glorious wildflowers. Plus cake. Lots and lots of cake.

Opposite the mighty Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau (left to right) (Photo: Giles Ruck).

Running and Pirouetting through Switzerland’s Jungfrau region

July 21-28, 2019

Running through Switzerland’s Jungfrau region, we encountered stunning views of the Eiger, flower-filled meadows, gorgeous flowing trails, glacial lakes in which to cool off… and even a life-size cut-out of James Bond!

Running on the Italian side of ‘Monte Bianco’ (Photo: Mark Brightwell).

The Tour du Mont Blanc: in the footsteps of shepherds, soldiers, poets and Kilian Jornet

July 14 - July 23, 2019

“And is seeing and hearing not part of the reason we came?”

Trip over, Guide Mark Brightwell ponders the experience of his “tribe” of trail runners, contemplating what has changed– and what hasn’t– over the course of a trail run around Mont Blanc.

Trail running on a Run the Alps trip with the Glacier du Tour in the background (Photo: Run the Alps).

The Hills are alive with the Sound of Music

July 4-13, 2019

Running the classic Tour du Mont Blanc circuit out of Chamonix was a wonderful experience – for all the senses. Varied trails, incredible views, fresh tarts and coffee – and even singing – made for an incredibly fun tour and a group of very contented runners.

Grand Col Ferret TMB

Courmayeur to Chamonix – overcoming heat and snow, then nailing a race too!

June 24 - July 1, 2019

Running through Italy, Switzerland and France around the northern side of Mont Blanc we encountered a heatwave, snow and river crossings, as well as bright flowers and incredible views. After our journey, we enjoyed taking part in the Mont Blanc Marathon series of races.

Tiffany cruises by on the Grand Balcon Nord, day 2, Chamonix (Photo: Bruno).

Chamonix, Champéry and the Historic Dent-du-Midi trail race

September 10 - 16, 2018

Sunshine and a cool breeze gave us ideal conditions to explore the French and Swiss Alps. Our team of seven took in the best of Chamonix before hopping a train over to Champéry, Switzerland, where several of us ran the historic Trail des Dent-du-Midi trail race, the oldest race in the Alps.

(Photo: Milo Zanecchia.)

Run the Alps in the Dolomites: Single-track, Snowfields, Big Views… and did we mention Dumplings?

June 16-23, 2019

Run the Alps’ first trip of the season ventured into Italy’s Dolomites – and found sweet single-track, stupendous views, and great food. In other words, we found the Dolomites in the Dolomites. (And we became experts in dumplings, too!)

Tackling the Triple Crown of the Tour du Mont-Blanc and other Memories

August 26 - September 4, 2018

WARNING: The following account contains an obscene number of superlatives, ridiculous strings of adjectives and a recurring theme of trails, mountains and great food!

Headed towards a night at the Turtmanhütte.

The Trail Runner’s Haute Route (Or: How we Climbed Mount Everest and Then Some)

September 3 - 13, 2018

We ran up to 33,500 feet (Well, sort of.) We ate cheese (All of us.) We crossed high passes (Lots of them.) And then we ate yet more cheese (Some of us.)

Zermatt Matterhorn Tour and the Great Dessert Challenge

August 20 - 26, 2018

We ran trails up to 7600 feet, through talus and over the moraines of the Wildstrubel glacier on a crisp clear morning. We ran under the iconic Matterhorn past centuries old chalets above Zermatt – and then several of us raced in one of the Alps’ best known trail races, Matterhorn Ultraks.

Taking in some of our first views of the Eiger. (Photo: Emily Geldard)

Bernese Oberland Tour – The full Swiss experience

July 29 - August 4, 2018

We ran across Alpine meadows, high mountain passes and cool gorges next to the Eiger, plus embraced the traditional festivities of Swiss National day – with plenty of local food and wine.

Tour de Mont Blanc Trail Run Odyssey (Or, how we traced a 100-mile line of sunshine through three countries)

July 15 - 24, 2018

Blue skies, swift ascents and gorgeous trails – with plenty of pie, coffee and outstanding panoramas to fuel our journey and keep spirits high. Ours was a fabulous trip with memories to last a lifetime.

Courmayeur – Chamonix Run: Snowfields, Singing the Can Can, and Chamonix Trail Races

June 25 - July 2, 2018

As the snow melted from the high passes on the Tour du Mont-Blanc, our crew tackled the run from Courmayeur, Italy to Chamonix, France – then took part in some of the world’s most famous trail races.

On the Tour du Mont Blanc, with Trail Racers Cruising Past

August 28 - September 6, 2017

The Run the Alps Tour du Mont-Blanc trip takes in the trails joining together the alps of France, Italy and Switzerland. Over 7 days of running we cover over 90 miles and climb 7,000 meters. Our trip was in Courmayeur, Italy, as the famous UTMB trail race passed through town.

Glaciers, Skyraces, and The Matterhorn

August 21-27, 2017

This year’s Matterhorn Ultraks trip had a larger-than-life quality to it– both the trail running and the guests! We ran across glaciers, travelled to Zermatt to run under the Matterhorn— and then ticked off a famous Alps trail race series. Here’s how it went.

Tour du Mont-Blanc: Thunder, Lightning, Snow, Ice, Sunshine– and Mobile Cow Milking!

August 6 - 15, 2017

The trip that had it all and more with thunder, lightning, snow, ice, sunshine, mobile cow milking… and the surliest waiter in all of Italy!

Taking a break, high above Grindelwald, Switzerland.

2017 Bernese Oberland Trip: Under the Eiger

July 30 - August 5, 2017

It was a spectacular week of trail running through Switzerland’s Bernese Oberland. The highlight came during Day 3, when we ran under the immense Eiger North Wall. Here’s my story of how that day unfolded, with a little trip summary below. It was a pleasure to join this great crew!

2017 Eiger Trail Tour

July 10-17, 2017

The Eiger Trail 2017 trip was an awesome week of trail running in the Berner Oberland and reconnaissance for a bunch of trail runners from around the globe. Not all of us raced, but those who didn’t ran around enough, cheering everyone else!


Every Trail Runner’s Biggest Fear: Keeping Up With the Group

Every Trail Runner’s Biggest Fear: Keeping Up With the Group

I’m not sure I can run up those hills. What if I’m the slowest? How do I know which trip is right for me?


Trail Run with The Mirnavator in Switzerland!

Trail Run with The Mirnavator in Switzerland!

Mirna Valerio, aka “The Mirnavator,” is back again this summer, and we could not be happier! This time, we’re headed to Switzerland’s Bernese Oberland, home of the iconic Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau.

New gear

Patagonia Black Hole Duffel

Patagonia Black Hole Duffel

A few years ago, we started looking for the perfect bag for our clients to move their belongings from inn to inn, when they’re trail running the Tour du Mont-Blanc. This is it! The 55-liter size has enough room for a few sets of town clothes and personal effects.