Switzerland - Part Second

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October 3rd 2006
Published: October 3rd 2006
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Doing the Berner Oberland

How confusing is this?? The map doesn't have all the necessary mountain village names included so this is an approximation only. The area around Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald is here we do the most hiking and where most of the photos were taken. We stayed in the village of Interlaken for 3 weeks and then spent a week on Lake Brienz in the village of Ringgenberg. (That's the yellow point on the north side of Lake Brienz.) There is no real order to this map since we train, bus, lift, and hike continually throughout the entire area.

If I could design the perfect place on earth it would be the Berner Oberland area, WITH NICE WEATHER! It has everything we dearly love: beautiful lakes, miles and miles of hiking trails, spectacular mountains, quaint villages with charming chalets, beautiful gardens, and delightful people. We love being there and this time we had the luxury of spending an entire month in the area.

We usually stay in Interlaken and use their trains and the Swiss Pass to get around the area. Our chalet flat overlooked the Jungfrau and was near the park in the center of town. The location couldn't have been better. We also spent a week on the hillside overlooking Lake Brienz in the town of Ringgenburg. This is a beautiful little village about a half hour's walk from Interlaken. The walk runs along the lake and the river and is a great way to be in the countryside but still be near Interlaken.

Hiking is our main focus while we are here and we cover the mountains from one end to the other. The various lifts, cablecars, gondolas, cog-wheel trains, and funiculars get us to the high elevations and then we do the hike down. Ron has coined this "the Monroe method" of hiking.

We tried a few new hikes this trip. A couple were alternative ways down from Kleine Scheidegg which were beautiful and good long trecks. The one we really were looking forward to was the Trift Glacier hike which would take us to the highest and longest pedestrian suspension bridge in Switzerland. This "swinging" bridge would then cross the Trift Glacier and the lake that is at the base of the meltwater from the glacier.

Well, we rode the cablecar way up the mountain to the base of the hike and started the long climb upward. After 45 minutes or so, it got REALLY steep, rocky, and difficult. Without hiking boots and poles we decided to err on the side of caution and try this hike on another visit. Getting down from our turn around point was hard enough and we were only about a third of the way up the mountain. So there are no photos of the bridge or the glacier. However, the part we did was very scenic.

I know there are a lot of photos this time but it is sooooooooooooo hard for me to edit mountain, lake, and hiking shots of one of our most favorite destinations. (The blog has changed their photo format. Sorry for the extra work to see the caption and a decent size photo.) I still have the big Unspunnen Parade and the Jungfrau Marathon to cover, but that will be the topic of other blogs.

There are also some errors on the route map that I didn't catch. But, once saved it can't be editted.

We are back in the States now and have spent a week in Florida and a week in Indiana. Shortly, we will be heading west on a National Park tour on our way to Arizona. Our plans are to be there until Thanksgiving. After that, we have more plans for more places.

Still enjoying the journey,

Additional photos below
Photos: 80, Displayed: 24


Hike to AllmendhubelHike to Allmendhubel
Hike to Allmendhubel

This is my favorite hike!
The funicular to AllmendhubelThe funicular to Allmendhubel
The funicular to Allmendhubel

If you don't want to hike from Murren to Allmendhubel, you can ride the funicular.
Gimsay on the way to GimmelwaldGimsay on the way to Gimmelwald
Gimsay on the way to Gimmelwald

Gimsays are somewhat like antelope. Their hide is used to make chamoix cloth. They are protected here and are one of the few wild animals that are seen when hiking.

4th October 2006

Breathtaking, thanks for sharing. :) Mel
6th October 2006

My Country...
I know i am to visit The Alps, and Switzerland in general. Have felt that way ever since i was about 8 years old, and seeing your amazing pictures, i am affirmed that i will be there before too long. There and Greece. My two favorite countries....imagine that...and i haven't even been there yet! Thanks for the reminder and a glimps of the beauty ahead!
7th October 2006

Pictures are wonderful - I think Denny beat the large sunflower last year, we had to cut about 5 of them down with a saws all. It was great to have the time to visit with both of you. Hope your winter goes well. Love ya both.
11th October 2006

#28 photo/cows staring in udder disbelief
The photos were all amazing! photo #28 caught my eye and I just had to make a funny comment. In all serious aside- They were breathtaking (the photos- I mean!) love, Abby
15th October 2006

Hi RPM, Loved the pictures from Switzerland. They brought back very pleasant memories. I think I had my picture next to one of those Minlikin cows. She sure looked familiar. Love, Nancy

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