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Original Issue


Frank and Mimi Lyon of La Jolla, California have skied the Parsenn twice. Here's what they recommend you take and what is best to buy there

SKI BOOTS: If you have a good pair, take them. If not, Heierling's in Davos-Platz makes some of world's best, handmade to order, $40-$45. Takes at least three days, but the Lyons sent plaster casts of their feet ahead and boots were ready when they arrived.

SKI PANTS: You'll need two pair. There is a fad for colored pants in Europe, but stick to gray and black unless you're expert. Red pants are earned, like spurs. Kaltenbrunner of Davos makes exceptional ski pants to order in three to four days, $40-$45.

SKIS: Head skis are the most sought after in Switzerland, just as in America. They're $85 in the U.S., more in Europe. There are good skis available in the Parsenn at reasonable prices, and you can rent steel-edged skis, good boots and aluminum poles for $1 a day anywhere in Switzerland.

BINDINGS: Take safety bindings with you. They're much safer to use and are hard to get in the Parsenn.

SKI WAX, SKINS: If you ever need skins, rent them on the spot. Waxes of all kinds are available in Switzerland.

POLES: If you bring U.S. skis, bring aluminum poles, too. They're better than most available in the Parsenn.

SOCKS: Three pair light-wool under-socks, three pair heavy-wool outer socks. Good ones available there.

UNDERWEAR: Two pair wool long handles—red, gray or white, plus short-sleeve V-neck wool tops for women, cotton T-shirts for men. Available in the Parsenn.

SHIRTS: One red and one yellow Lanella shirt (washable wool and cotton) and colored button-down Oxfords. Bring these from the U.S.

SWEATERS: Two hand-knit cable-stitch sweaters, preferably gray and black for women; yellow and black for men. Good ones at Ettingers, Davos are about $20. For after skiing, bring cashmeres.

PARKA: Nylon-hooded parka is a must. Take with you, as U.S. nylon is best.

SCARVES: Two or three bright silk scarves to shield the throat while skiing. Available in the Parsenn for $2 if you don't already have them.

CAPS: Two "fast" caps and one ski cap with visor for men and women. Bright colors are acceptable in scarves and caps even if you're a novice.

GOGGLES: You can either bring Air Force surplus polaroid goggles with rubber mountings and interchangeable lenses, or buy snow goggles there.

GLOVES: Two pair woolen inner mittens, two pair leather outer gauntlet mittens. Good selection at Davos.

KNAPSACK: Skiers in Switzerland carry necessities in a "fanny pack," strapped around the waist. Get this in Davos.

SUNGLASSES: Bring nonbreakable ones—for sunning, not for skiing. You can get all sorts of sun-tan oil there.

AFTER-SKI TIPS FOR GIRLS: Don't bring cocktail or evening dresses or high heels. Your dressiest outfit will best be a full skirt of bright wool or quilting, and a cashmere sweater. Take tapered slacks of corduroy or velveteen, wear them with bright blouses or sweaters—"the gayer the better." You will need flat play shoes, and fleece-lined after-ski boots. You'll also need a tailored topcoat, preferably fur-lined. All cosmetics are available in villages, but hotels supply neither soap nor facecloths. Bring your own; they're hard to find. Cotton flannel nightgowns and light-wool bathrobe also necessary. You're likely to have to parade down the hall to the bathroom.

AFTER-SKI TIPS FOR MEN: The most formal outfit a man needs is a tweed jacket, flannel slacks, shirt, tie and loafers—and the tie isn't necessary. He also needs pajamas, bathrobe, slippers, soap, washcloth, after-ski boots, and an overcoat, such as a camel's-hair duffel which is ideal.


MONEY: Take travelers checks—you can cash them anywhere at the rate of $1 to 4.3 Swiss francs. Or bring a letter of credit. If you have lira or French francs, you can change them at railroad stations.

DRUGSTORE ITEMS: The little drugstore across the street from the Chesa Grischuna in Klosters has seven or eight brands of American shaving cream and toothpaste. Local newsstands have paper-backed books in English, current American magazines. There are Kodak signs on all of the camera stores and you can get all standard U.S. film—Ektachrome, Kodachrome—plus European and English film. U.S. cigarets are available—cost about 60¢ per pack.

CUSTOMS: Swiss officials will stop you at the border and look at your passport—may even open it and look inside. You won't need jewelry in the Parsenn, but if you bring something fancy, register it with U.S. customs to save trouble when you re-enter the U.S. The same precaution goes for foreign-made cameras.

AUTOMOBILES: You can rent a car in the Parsenn for about 40 francs a day, but nobody does. If you're skiing you don't need one and if you want to make a side trip, let the cabbie worry about chains and frozen radiators.

LAUNDRY: In most places you can get laundry done nicely in a matter of hours. This helps cut down on the changes of clothes you have to bring with you.

RESERVATIONS: Make them well in advance and stick with them. Once the hotel confirms them, it can charge you for three days whether you show up or not.

ACCOMMODATIONS: There are about 70 sports hotels and pensions in Davos, about 30 in Klosters, and you can't go far wrong on any of them. They're all clean, and by U.S. standards, inexpensive. Once there, you can ski for a week, with room, board and transportation paid for as little as $44, but that's cutting it close. At such hotels as Klosters' Chesa Grischuna—"the best little hotel in the world"—you can spend what the traffic will bear.

The Parsenn, with its 27 listed trails, draws skiers like a giant magnet. From December to May, the funiculars and the cable cars are as jammed as a city subway, taking people up to the trails and slopes that spill down from the Weissfluhjoch, the Strelapass and the Gotschnagrat. But the touring skier can also spend an entire day on the Parsenn and hardly touch on a marked trail. He can, for example, hire a guide for the full day for $10, take the 9:00 a.m. cable car from Klosters up the Gotschnagrat (upper right). Then he can strike out for Jenaz, 14 miles away (upper left), staying off in the deep, untouched powder snow, and returning to the trail only for a shot of skiwasser and a bite of wurst at one of the small mountain huts. Whichever route he picks, he is likely to feel as though he were traveling in a skier's dream country with perfect snow, perfect slopes and an easy ride back up the mountain.



Mimi Lyon bundles up in parka, goggles, mittens after downhill run.



Frank and Mimi Lyon, with instructor Max Bertsch, lead party to run.



Frank Lyon, in cable-stitch sweater, adjusts silk scarf against the wind.




3. Kircherberg
5a. Kircherbannwald
5b. Buolwald
6a Hauptertäli
6b. Sapün
7. Dorftäli
8b. Standard
11. Totalp
13. Schwarzseealp Klosters
16. Saas
17. Küblis
26. Gotschnagrat-Schwarzseealp
27. Casanna Alp
27a. Kalbersäss


4. Strela
8. Hohenweg
8a. Ersatzstandard
12. Wolfgang
14. Klosters
26a. Parsennfurka
15. Serneus


4a. Guggerbach
9. Dorfberg
10. Meierhofertäil
24. Gotschnawang Standard
25. Drostobel

TOURS: 1. 2. 18. 19. 20. 20a. 21. 22. 23.