Report «Patrouille des Glaciers», 2010 - blick.ch, L'illustré
The «Patrouille des Glaciers» is probably the world's hardest alpine race. The racetrack in the Swiss Alps heads over 53km with a difference in altitude of more than 8000m. This report was shot on behalf of the Swiss newspaper Blick and the Swiss magazine L'illustré.
The idea of the Patrouille des Glaciers arised while the mobilization in Switzerland (1939-1945). In 1943 the PDG was held for the first time. During the third race in 1949 three racers disappeared in a glacier crevasse and could be recovered dead but eight days later. The military department forbid the competion for the next 30 years, it was restored to life in 1984 with a huge security effort.
The Patrouille des Glaciers is a race of extremes: 5506 participants of 26 countries enrolled, more than 1500 soldiers are employed during the race. A Swiss team won this year's race from Zermatt to Verbier (53km) with a new record: 5 hours 52 minutes and 2 seconds.