Fancy some sightseeing tours around the Alps? Switzerland offers some of the most stunning mountainous views in the world, with many small airports nested in the valleys in between. In Microsoft Flight Simulator, this region is absolutely astounding, both beautiful to see and a real challenge for GA pilots.
There’s a lot to see in the Alps, from the beautiful valleys and mountains to man-made buildings and structures that enable people to enjoy the area. Unfortunately, some of the experience is a bit lacking in MSFS. There are no moving trains, a common sight in Switzerland, nor animated ski resorts. Thankfully, as usual, we can count on the third-party development community to enhance the base scenery with some cool new features!
One of our favorites for a while has been Project Lifts, which adds thousands of cable cars, chair lifts, and more to the simulator. When flying in the Alps, you can spot these cool structures going up and down the mountains, which adds a lot to the realism and immersion of the experience. As for trains, they may eventually be added by the MSFS team but, so far, there’s nothing that moves on rails in the scenery… except in some third-party scenery add-ons that have been released over the past few months, like this animated model of the Hogwarts Express, in Scotland.
Today we’re bringing you another fantastic location where you can enjoy flying in a beautiful setting while watching a realistic train going about its life below. And it’s not any other train! It’s the world-famous Glacier Express, often cited as the slowest express train in the world.
The location in question is LSMC Ulrichen Airport, in Switzerland, an old jet fighter base and the highest in all of Europe. LSMC has the peculiarity of having a train line crossing the taxiway, which can lead to unexpected moments for pilots as the train passes by. A traffic light system is in place to stop aircraft movements and ensure the safety of both the train and aircraft.
Developer Model Instruments figured this would be a great spot to make something special in MSFS, so he got to work on a detailed rendition of the airport, along with an animated model of the Glacier Express. This train travels between some of the most stunning landscapes in Switzerland, and it’s a very popular activity for tourists. Its slow pace and large windows are perfect for soaking the views, and the passage through Ulrichen Airport can generate some interesting situations where an airplane needs to stop for the train to pass by.
With the animated Glacier Express, this cool new scenery for MSFS becomes quite the sight for approaching and departing airplanes. The train moves between a distance of about 4,5 km, enough to entertain passengers and pilots looking for some life outside.
Ulrichen Airport was used as a fighter base serving the Swiss Air Force, so it’s a great location to train with military planes, such as the Hawker Hunter, which we recently featured. In fact, if you have that freeware package, you’ll find a squadron of static Hunters parked in the airport!
LSMC – Ulrichen Airport with Glacier Express is really worth a look if you like airplanes, trains, and the Alps, and it’s now available at flightsim.to, priced at just around 7€.