27 May 1931: Auguste Piccard, adventurer and former student of Einstein, and his assistant Paul Kipfer made the very first stratosphere flight in a gas-driven hot air balloon, reaching 15,781 meters altitude (they were the first human beings to see the earth’s curvature with their own eyes). Unfortunately, they were forced to a spectacular emergency landing on Gurgl’s Glacier.
Within a few days Obergurgl became world-famous due to the successful rescue of the two explorers. The sleepy village of Obergurgl was suddenly awake and the world public was informed on the fortunate landing which was the very origin of tourism in Obergurgl-Hochgurgl. Over the years, it has become one of the Alps’ top holiday destinations.
It’s not recorded if the local mountain rescuers from Obergurgl crossed a bridge on their way to the emergency landing site. But they would appreciate the newly built suspension bridge for sure!