Point of interest 

Peat Exploitation in the Bitschji

A 13'000 m2 wide and around 5 meter thick layer of peat was discovered in 1939 on the terrain of today’s Lake Bitschji. A total volume of 1.800 railway waggons was estimated of which 2 waggons per day were dug by hand. The high quality peat was used as fuel during the Second World War in absence of flammable heating material. For the exploitation the area was drained between 1941-1945 with canals and a 400-meter-long cable car to the Blatten road was built. Over 60 people, mostly women, were working here. The removed peat was pressed with a special machine, cut into briquettes, brought to the drying place by trolleys and transported after drying by cable car and trucks to the train station in Brig. The price of peat at the time was 10,20 CHF per 100 kg. Afterward the trough was flooded and the Lake Bitschji was re-created by the present owner, the family Zenhäusern.