Niederwald

Coordinates: 46°26’13″ N   8°11’37″ E   1250m ASL

Please note that since 2018 this has ceased to be a recognised landing field, although I have not deleted this page, as it is still acceptable to land here, provided that the grass is short.  However, it no longer has a windsock or any official status.

This area provides your first landing option in the Goms valley to the east of Fiesch. It comes into view from the west, as soon as you have reached the shoulder above Bellwald after your first transition across the Fieschertal from the Fiescheralp/Eggishorn takeoff area. If you fail to find a climb here and gradually lose your height, this is where you are likely to end up. It is easy to identify from the air, as it is where both the railway line and road disappear into a tunnel for a couple of hundred metres, just east of the train station at Niederwald.

Niederwald landing field viewed from above Bellwald, looking east

Niederwald landing field viewed from above Bellwald, looking east

Early in the day, you can expect to encounter a light south-westerly, but the north-easterly from the Grimsel may well penetrate this far to the west in the afternoon, especially in north overpressure.

Niederwald landing field, viewed from the north

Niederwald landing field, viewed from the north

Wind speeds of around 30km/hr are not unusual in the afternoon, and although the breeze is usually laminar, the terrain around here is irregular, which can lead to some mechanical turbulence.  Although it is mainly used as a bomb-out field, I consider it a much safer option than the main Fiesch landing zone, and a better choice if there is reason to suspect that there could be trouble there.  However, if there is wind at Bellwald, particularly from a sector between west and north, you may find rough conditions here due to wind shear, in which case the airflow at the Ritzingen landing field is likely to be smoother.