A magical Swiss day

………..Where time seems to stand still……….make-hay-while-the-sun-shines.JPG

We were staying at the small campsite nestled at the furthest point south along the Lauterbrunnen Valley that vehicles can go, in the sleepy Swiss hamlet of Stechelberg. A place where they still cut and manage the hay by hand for the livestock. In amongst Switzerlands largest awesome mountain range, staying at an altitude of 3,000 ft. we were enjoying some wonderful hot days of walking to the nearby villages of Wengan, Gimmelwald and Murren (with a little help by the local cable-car). on-the-way-up-to-murren.JPG

Evenings were spent chilling out beside and in our faithful Avalon camper-van which uncomplaining carries us all round central Europe. When we awoke one bright and clear morning with the prospect of another fine day we decided we would embark on a mini expedition further up the roadless and sparsely populated valley head into the fabulous Unesco World Heritage Site that is still cared for today as it has been for centuries. Slowly moving the cattle and goats up the mountain flanks until late summer then heading to the lower slopes in the autumn.euro-2007-no2-68.JPG

So with rucksacks packed and a good supply of water we started the steady walk upwards into this time-capsule of wonderful scenery.As we climbed ever higher the temperature started to fall. When we stopped for a break and looked back the way we had come you could see for miles right down the Lauterbrunnen Valley with the hill-side village of Wengan at the far end, (picture-postcard stuff ). euro-2008-6-38.JPG

A bit further on whilst we were refreshing ourselves at a spring fed watering trough a man and boy appeared leading a well laden horse, obviously the only means of carriage up to the few farmsteads high up the mountain-side.euro-2008-6-34.JPG We carried on, our well documented guide keeping us on the right track. After a long sweeping turn at the apex of our route we entered a lovely wooded downward section where you felt no-one had ever entered before, a bit like entering a lost world, steep paths, tumbling rivers etc.euro-2007-no2-93.JPG

Later crossing our outward track near a small homestead there were a herd of goats that seemed to think Sylvia was their leader and followed her for quite some way, their neck-bells making a melodic tune.


Another couple of hours saw us back to civilisation (that said with tongue in cheek), where we stopped for a well earned beer outside a small hostelry.

Then over seven hours after we had set out we were back to our van, and our lovely view down the valley with its shear rock walls with numerous waterfalls cascading down. The whole day had been hot, sunny and clear.


This to me is the magic of Switzerland……………

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