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Dirruhorn: Popular 38 Four Thousand Meter Peaks


The Dirruhorn at 4035 meters or 13,238 feet, is a summit in the Pennine Alps in Switzerland. It lies towards the northern end of the Nadelgrat, a high level ridge running roughly north-south above Saas-Fee to the east, and the Mattertal to the west. It is the last summit of the Nadelgrat ridge and it is in the same massif as the Mischabel group of mountains, which is home to Switzerland’s highest peak such as Dom and Taschhorn. It is one of the highest mountain in Switzerland and the nearest peaks are Chli Duerrenhorn, Hohberghorn, Stecknadelhorn, Brufluee, Nadelhorn and Hohgwaechte.

The origin of the name is from the Valais dialect “dirr” meaning dry. The Dirrufad or the dry path is a very dry, south-facing mountain meadow below the Dirrugrat ridge, which probably also provided the names of the ridge, glacier and summit.

The rocky Dirruhorn is the last summit of the Nadelgrat ridge, located north-west of the Mischabel massif. It forms the isolated end point of the Nadelgrat and, unlike the other four summits of the ridge, it is seldom climbed. One of the reason is because most of the snow has melted away in recent years making it very dangerous with falling rocks. The Nadelgrat links the Lenzspitze, Nadelhorn, Stecknadelhorn, Hobarghorn and Dirrhorn.


This high rocky mountain was first climbed by Albert-Frederick Mummery, William Penhall, Alexander Burgener, and Ferdinand Imseng on September 7th 1879. To climb this mountain, it takes 2 day trip and the ideal option is for ridge climbing mixed with high-altitude terrain. Since it is a very difficult hike, a mountain guide is necessary to summit this mountain. Since it is part of the Mischabel group of mountains, the hike shows surroundings with many mountains making the view absolutely beautiful. To go up the summit, hikers can take go from Randa to Rotiboden and to Weisshorn hut. The fastest way to reach the summit is to trace the clear snowy path that leads from Riedgletscher but if there aren’t any snow depending on the season, hikers have to climb through the rocky paths but it is not impossible when proper equipments are used. Just be sure to hire a mountain guide since weathers high up in the mountains can change and when there are few snows and loose rocks, the path to summit can be very difficult and dangerous. If you need the proper equipment, there are many places to rent proper equipments.