Monday, March 6, 2017

Interlaken: Up, Up and Away

Interlaken Train into Alps
The trains in and around Interlaken seem to be designed for carrying skiers up and down the Alps.  Probably in the summer they do the same for hikers.  We think the best skiers ride to the top and then ski down to a village where they can get a train to another slope or back to their lodge.  The trains all have areas for stacking skis, snowboards, sleds.  We rode as far up as we could without getting on the train to Jungfrau, the highest altitude railway station on the continent.  The snow had begun and there was a complete whiteout.  The train was still running, but we would have seen white on white on white. The snow obliterated my photography efforts, too.  Beyond the visible mountains in the photos are more and higher soaring peaks that the camera just couldn't capture.

Wengen, Switzerland

We got off the train at a little village, Wengen, for lunch.  The sole purpose of the village appears to be lodging for skiers (or summer hikers).  Chalets dot the mountain sides.  Bunny slopes weave among the chalets.  There was not much snow.  The concierge informed us that not much snow fell this year until January.   Snow making machines were abundant, too.  We continued on up the mountain the Kleine Scheidegg where the snow was blowing and 10,000 maniacs (a tour group) were boarding our train down.  On the way up to Kleine we had breathtaking views of expansive valleys and gorges framed by the Alps.  The way down was just as beautiful.  I expected Heidi and her Grandfather to emerge at any moment.  Photos at flickr.