Up to now an efficient 3-D geophysical mapping of the subsurface in mountainous environments with rough terrain has not been possible. A merging approach of several closely spaced 2-D electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) surveys to build up a quasi-3-D model of the electrical resistivity is presented herein as a practical compromise for inferring subsurface characteristics and lithology. The ERT measurements were realised in a small glacier forefield in the Swiss Alps with complex terrain exhibiting a small scale spatial variability of surface substrate. To build up the grid for the quasi-3-D measurements the ERT surveys were arranged as parallel profiles and perpendicular tie lines. The measured 2-D datasets were collated into one quasi-3-D file. A forward modelling approach - based on studies at a permafrost site below timberline - was used to optimize the geophysical survey design for the mapping of the mountain permafrost distribution in the investigated glacier forefield. Quasi-3-D geoelectrical imaging is a useful method for mapping of heterogeneous frozen ground conditions and can be considered as a further milestone in the application of near surface geophysics in mountain permafrost environments.