Zermat - Access to a Swiss village near the famed Matterhorn peak has reopened after unusually heavy snowfall blanketed roads and railways, stranding thousands of tourists.
Work crews with shovels, plows and helicopters located and bored through the cumbersome snow mass to end a near two-day suspension of train and vehicle traffic to the Alpine resort of Zermatt.
SEE: Snow, avalanche risks strand 13 000 tourists in Zermatt
Train service resumed late Wednesday, and road access restarted Thursday.
Some 13,000 tourists had gotten stuck, with sporadic helicopter flights the only way out.
Texan Mike Donovan expressed relief he could make his flight back home: "It wasn't bad to stay here, and the ski conditions were really good."
Switzerland's avalanche research institute said the region has gotten three to four metres of snowfall this year.
What to read next on Traveller24:
- WATCH: World's most powerful passports for 2018
- #Shotleft: Festive Season research shows a boost in regional visitors in Western Cape
- Pretoria & Joburg specials to start your 2018 right!