Des Alps at La Fouly

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October 3rd 2019
Published: October 3rd 2019
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A firm favourite is the Des Alps celebrations at La Fouly. We have stayed at Glaciers camping ground for 3 years in a row now. The first was by accident and we missed the festivities, last year the girls and I went (Murray was on a work trip), so this year was the first time as a family to see the Des Alps. My parents, who have been helping out with the kids, extended their trip by a few days so they could join us and witness this unique Swiss tradition. Des Alps is the start of winter, when the cows come down from grazing in the mountains over summer time, to shelter in the barns over the harsh winters. The cows get dressed up, wearing flower head dresses and their ceremonial bells. Swiss horns play, cow bells ring through the valley, the wood cutter carves a bear out of a piece of wood with a chainsaw. Raclette and wine is served. It is a party as the farmers come back into villiage life again. We like La Fouly as it is the end of the road, so to speak. We walk from our lovely campsite and feel like the minority tourist witnessing the celebrations. It is lovely to watch the local people greet each other and celebrate the end of summer (although I mourn the end of summer).

It 'felt' colder than previous years, although the glacier nearby seemed to have less snow on it. Unfortunately Hayley and I had a few key items of warm clothing missing. Luckily for us, Mum and Dad had a spare double bed in their caravan and a lovely heater inside. The others survived the cold. We were joined by a lovely Netball mummy friend, who helped get all our gear up without needing to take 2 cars. Thanks Jo! Charlotte stayed behind in Geneva to compete in a football (soccer) tournament, so as to not let her team down. She is really enjoying playing with her friends in the team and is a firm favourite in the goal.

This is our last Des Alps in Switzerland for this time in our lives. It has started the beginning of the 'lasts' as we count down to leave Geneva in November.

Additional photos below
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Introducing the next herdIntroducing the next herd
Introducing the next herd

Some only had 1 cow, others many

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