THE
AXALP
GUIDE

Axalp Fliegerschiessen is without a doubt one of the most aspiring airshows in the world. And it is not even an airshow! Axalp Fliegerschiessen is a demo event where the Swiss Air Force show their target practice skills by firing live ammunition with their board cannons on ground targets. Combined with the amazing alpine environment, and some serious workout needed to get there, Axalp has all the ingredients for an experience never to forget. I made this guide to give you information about Axalp 2022 and to share hints and tips that have proven useful to me over the years. If you plan to visit Axalp Fliegerschiessen 2022, make sure to read this Axalp guide from A to Z.

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information about Axalp 2022

THE
AXALP
GUIDE

Content

1

On this page
Information

about Axalp 2022

Scroll down for Information about Axalp 2022 Airshow and Axalp Fliegerschiessen tickets for 2022.

2

Getting to Axalp
The official Spots

Getting to the official Axalp spots at Tschingel and KP Ebenflüh.

3

Alternative spots
at Axalp

An overview of all the alternative spots at Axalp such as Faulhorn and Wildgärst.

4

Preparation & Photography at Axalp

Getting to the official Axalp spots at Tschingel and KP Ebenflüh.

5

Travelling to Axalp

How to get to and where to stay in Axalp and the Haslital region

6

TLDR The Axalp Guide Summary

If you can’t be bothered with the entire story.

Practical information about Axalp 2022

When is Axalp 2022?

Axalp Fliegerschiessen 2022 will take place on Wednesday 19 and Thursday 20 October. Up until 2019 the Swiss Air Force scheduled the Axalp air power demonstration in the second week of October. But since 2021 the event was moved to one week later. The days for Axalp 2022 are as follows:

Axalp ’22 Show Dates

Tuesday 18 October 2022
Axalp Fliegerschiessen Training Day

Wednesday 19 October 2022
Axalp Fliegerschiessen Official Day

Thursday 20 October 2022
Axalp Fliegerschiessen Official Day

Buying tickets for Axalp

Axalp has grown massively in popularity over the past two decades. To cope with the constantly growing flood of visitors the organisation have decided in 2010 to completely close down the road to Axalp during all display days. Visitors can only go up with the shuttle bus service.

A ticket for parking, bus and chairlift up to Windegg will cost CHF 55.- Children under 16 pay half price. You can also buy a passe partout for all three days. They usually cost about CHF 95.-

If you have accommodation in Axalp there is a limited number of Chairlift tickets available for round about CHF 15.-. In previous years tickets could be bought at the parking and at Brienz railway station. In 2021, due to COVID restrictions, tickets were only available through Ticketino.ch. If the same structure as last year is followed, tickets for Axalp 2022 will go on sale early September 2022.

Be aware that all tickets are non refundable, if the show is cancelled. Also, if the chairlift does not operate for any reason (high wind for example), you will not get a refund.

What is the flying program of the Axalp Fliegerschiessen demo?

Surprise acts

The program of the Axalp airshow is relatively predictable. However minor changes do take place, and almost every year you can expect to see on or two surprise displays.

For example in 2012 the Saab Gripen that Switzerland had on order at that time performed full displays including target shooting. And in 2021 we were treated to the last appearance of the Hawker “Tiger” Hunter in 2021 before it was put out of service. Also, in 2021 there was a persistent rumour going around that a F-35 would make an appearance at Axalp. Without a doubt, the rumour was rooted in a lot of wishful thinking by many visitors ;-). I think it will take some more years before we see the Lightning II at Axalp.

The daily flying program

The Swiss being Swiss every year the official program starts exactly at 14:00 and will finish around 15:30. From Tuesday until Thursday the flying program is exactly the same. In the mornings you may see live firing as well and some practice display by the Hornet and/or the PC-21. Next you can see many Cougar helicopters bringing the press and VIP’s up. The morning program has become more quiet compared to when the F-5’s were still around. Summing up, there is no guarantee that anything flies in the morning, Still, I would always advice to be there early. You can see an extensive report on the Axalp Fliegerschiessen demo here.

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Target shooting with board cannons
Boeing F/A-18 Hornet

Points for getting fire out of the gun nozzles. Double points for doing that while catching one of the bullets in your photo. 

Do not miss the “sneak pass” and the flare drops at the start and the end of live shooting.

Firefighting demo
2* Aerospatiale  As532 Cougar

Two Cougars will drop water from Lake Brienz to put out a simulated fire. Camera’s in portrait mode!

Helicopter Flying demo
Aerospatiale  As532 Cougar

Most classic part of this display is the flare drop with 128 flares. Contrary what you would normally do with a helo, take a slightly faster shutter speed than normal: the firework of the flares will come out better. Your rotor blur will suffer though! Rest of the display is very photogenic as well, especially when the Cougar is flying around with the gear retracted. All against that beautiful backdrop.

Air policing
Pilatus PC-24 & 2* F/A-18

Simulation of an air policing mission, Photographically speaking less interesting as most of takes place from a far distance. Nice formation shots of two F/A-18 Hornets and PC-24 are possible though.

Special forces operations
PC-7

In 2021 we saw a new program item where a group of six special forces are dropped to secure an area. When they start shooting be sure to catch the mortar firing and the pick up of the soldiers at the end! Very spectacular!

Paratroopers
PC-7

Try to nail the moment that the paras jump out of the plane. The para carrying the big Swiss flag is also photogenic. Further it is wise to keep your eyes open after the drop has taken place. This year as a novelty, the PC-7’s flew straight at the audience from the mountain ridge in the south.

Swiss Hornet Display team
Boeing F/A-18 Hornet

The best place in the world to watch the F/A-18 do a display. The program has evolved over the years to suit the Axalp arena even better.

PC-21 Demo
Pilatus PC-21

Don’t underestimate this little red turboprop trainer against the mountain backdrop. One of the highlights always. Especially if it comes flying straight at the KP tower at Ebenflüh or the Tschingel hill.

Patrouille Suisse
Northrop F-5E Tiger

Traditionally the closing of the show. The flying is adapted to the terrain, making this display one of a kind. Best at the start of the show when they fly with all six ships.

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