Experiencing heights with strong roots.

Sustainable management

We stand for independence, financial strength and consistent growth. We take responsibility for our actions – for our employees as well as in the region. We listen and are open to new ideas. We identify with our home and our brand. The foundation stone of our company was laid by our previous generation, which supports us in breaking new ground and passing the company on to future generations with high quality and environmentally and socially compatible solutions. We rely on handshake quality. Because without trust, business does not work.

What we offer

We operate the cable cars of the hiking & skiing areas Pitztal Glacier & Rifflsee
as well as the Café 3440 at the Pitztal Glacier.


  • 41 kilometres of pistes
  • 6 cable car (plus one Wonder Carpet)
  • transport capacity 10,390 persons/h
  • Ski tour park with three prepared ascent routes in the secured ski area
  • excursion destination
  • Starting point for hiking and mountain sports


  • 26 kilometres of pistes
  • 5 cable cars
  • transport capacity 7,754 persons/h
  • excursion destination
  • Starting point for hiking and mountain sports
  • Europe’s highest raft


  • Highest vantage point & highest coffee house in Austria with its own pastry shop
  • Highest event location
  • Highest registry office

Economic facts

Pitztaler Gletscherbahn GmbH & Co KG was founded in 1980 and is based in St. Leonhard im Pitztal, Tyrol. The company is a private Austrian company and is run as a cable car and service company with mountain gastronomy. It is 100% owned by a private investor group around Dr. Hans Rubatscher.

Economic development

After two years of construction and an original investment of 23 million euros, the glacier ski area of the Pitztal Glacier was put into operation on 23 December 1983 for public skiing as well as mountain and leisure sports with an inclined cable car, a quad chairlift and three glacier surface lifts. The cable cars were the “motor” for tourism development in the rear Pitztal valley, which until then had been one of the most structurally weak rural regions in Tyrol. The area, which was originally planned as a year-round skiing area, developed over the years into an autumn and winter skiing area due to climatic changes, which became increasingly popular with many tourists and also brought economic success. The profits were constantly reinvested in the infrastructure on the mountain and in the valley, such as in the Pitzpanoramabahn or later in new and comfortable replacement facilities for the glacier ski lifts. In 1994, the small winter ski area of Rifflsee was integrated into the company. Here, investments were made in a new feeder lift and in the development of the Grubenkopf and Muttenkopf, and a T-bar lift was replaced by a chairlift. The mountain catering also underwent a significant improvement: the canteen at the former mountain station gave way to a new building, today’s mountain restaurant “Sunna Alm”, which is still the highest passive house in Europe.

When the tragic accident occurred in Kaprun on 11 November 2000 in the funicular railway with 150 fatalities, it also had a considerable influence on the Pitztal Glacier Railway in the following years – because the Pitztal Glacier is also only accessible via a funicular railway through the mountain. Despite the highest safety standards, a 20% drop in visitors had to be accepted during this time. It took years for the numbers to recover. Nevertheless, it was still possible to achieve a positive result in the following years. Also in 2000, Pitztaler Gletscherbahn GmbH & Co KG took a stake in Kaunertaler Gletscherbahnen, an area which, like the Pitztal, has retained its original character and epoch-making beauty. In the operation of the two glacier ski areas as well as the two winter ski areas of Rifflsee and Fendels, economically very good synergies have resulted.

However, the Corona situation was challenging for the company, with a total loss of 90% of turnover in the 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 financial years. The biggest challenges of the pandemic were a certain unpredictability, in addition to a considerable additional workload in the administration and in the ski area. However, thanks to COVID subsidies and a government short-time work scheme, it was possible to keep all year-round staff. This is an important concern, because we feel a great responsibility for the 94 employees – we value each and every one of them. With over 100 year-round jobs, the Pitztaler Gletscherbahn is now one of the largest employers in the Imst district.

Since 2018, the management of the Pitztal Glacier & Rifflsee has been in the hands of Franz Wackernell and Beate Rubatscher-Larcher, who has been with the company for over 20 years. It is hard to find a woman as a cable car boss in Tyrol. The foundations of the company were laid in the previous generation. Glacier pioneer Dr. Hans Rubatscher was responsible for the development and handed over his agenda to the next generation shortly after his 80th birthday.

The new management remained no less active, and the good revenues were invested in the infrastructure, just as in the previous generation. In summer 2022, the new glacier express was opened and a new glacier restaurant is also currently being planned. The clear goal of a gradual transformation into an energy-autonomous ski area with renewable energies and a functioning circular economy is not just lip service: In 2015, the resort was the first glacier ski area to invest in a photovoltaic free-field system and already generates around a third of the energy required for winter operation itself; summer operation is already run exclusively on its own electricity. Plans are currently underway to expand the open-air photovoltaic system. Further investments in sustainable solutions are planned for 2023.

How important the cable car iis for the region

Tourism is an important livelihood for the people of Pitztal. By operating our ski areas, we make a significant contribution to making our region attractive for guests. It is important for us to work together with the valley community and to shape sustainable tourism together.

Die 4 Bereiche unserer Nachhaltigkeit

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