Gone Sailing

It’s been 4 years since I had the pleasure to sail the Mediterranean with Martin. After a surprisingly full flight to Amsterdam to a rather empty Amsterdam airport, a train, and a bus ride, I arrived at the final destination Makkum, in the north of Amsterdam, where Marius’ Maranea is docked and waiting to be sailed up north to Sweden. Read More

Hiking in Adelboden Day 2 – Bütschi

Bergläger 1491m – Bütschi Wasserfall – Luegli 2138m – Hahnenmoos – Geils – Bergläger 1491m

Another sunny day and a blue sky!

Today’s hike is going up along the stream of Bütschi to Luegli. Adelboden is a popular skiing destination which in summer turns into a rather unscenic spot spoiled with ski lifts. But luckily the Bütschi streamside is rather unharmed and left me with the feeling of walking in remote mountains.

The Bütschi Waterfall was today’s highlight. Numerous streams are falling beautifully down into the flowerbed. I lingered watching nature’s spectacle and listening to the flow of water for a while.

With over 500 m up I arrived at today’s highest point Luegli (2138 m). It offered a sweeping view of the rugged Wildstrubel mountain chain and the entire Adelboden Valley. The Luegli is one of many slopes around the Hahnenmoospass, a top destination for model sailplane enthusiasts all over Europe.

A half an hour walk from the Luegli is the  Schalmy slope at the Hahnesmoos. Philippe was flying his airplane, with the most inadequate model name  “Shinto”, with a smile all over his face, apparently having another fantastic flying day.

Leaving Philippe for some more flying, I walked down to the valley, enjoying alpine flowers on the way.

Hiking in Adelboden Day 1

This is our second time in Adelboden. In 2017 I was on the Via Alpina route and Philippe joined me for Kandersteg to Adelboden hike.

The path from Kandersteg to Adelboden stayed vividly in my head. The steep, rocky Bunderchrinde pass was the scariest passage ever in my whole Via Alpina route. I  wanted to head back, but I could come down to Adelboden with Philippe successfully. Read More

Zwillikon – Birmensdorf – Bremgarten – Oberfelden by bike

47km, 5hrs / Route 84 & 77 / Zwillikon – Birmensdorf (Biotop forest) – Oberwil-Lieli – Bremgarten – Rottenschwil  – Merenschwand  – Zwillikon Read More

Sometimes the magic is around the corner

Casting lesson at Lake Zurich

A scenic bike tour around Mt. Rigi

Goldau – Immensee – Küssnacht – Greppen – Weggis – Vitznau – Brunnen – Lauerz – Goldau
52km, 3h30min

A scenic bike tour around Mt. Rigi (1798m) and three lakes with too much traffic to our liking, but with a hard to beat setting: The imposing Rigi peak, the Lauerzersee, the Vierwaldstättersee, the Zugersee and the charming village Brunnen.

The bike tour starts unexpectedly with a historical site: a Chapel of the most famous Swiss legend Wilhelm Tell, a legendary Swiss freedom fighter who killed the foreign tyrant Gessler after he forced Tell to shoot an apple on his son’s head.

Within the story, the phrase “He will come through this hollow alley!” is known to every Swiss, even to those who do not know the story’s content. And here we are in this hollow alley. A quaint well-maintained chapel leads to the narrow, mossy stone-paved atmospheric path which conjures up the very scene of Tell shooting Gessler with a crossbow. The story is illustrated at an info center pavilion next to the alleged murder scene. I am a bit of history buff so this visit alone made my day!

Biking along our first lake of today, the Lake of Zug,  and seeing the imposing Rigi’s north flank at left, we continue south. Soon the scenic Lake Lucerne comes into view. We had to share the narrow road with many fancy open cars, motorbikes and what we like to call “combat cyclists”.

At Weggis, a charming café floating on the lake is perfect for our coffee and tea break. It makes “Sailor” Philippe feel like being on a boat, which he loves, but this swaying makes me (a non-sailor) almost seasick. In any case, after two months of the gloomy corona crisis, it is nice to be able to sit in a café for a break, while seeing others enjoying the summer day out.

To me, the stunning Lake Lucerne, its fjord-like coastline with the backdrop of towering mountain peaks is one of the most dramatic sceneries in Switzerland.

We arrive in Brunnen, an attractive little resort town which lies on the shore of Urnersee.  On this sunny Sunday and a lot of people are enjoying a leisurely walk at the lakeside and a Mediterranean feel lingers in the air.  We put our feet in refreshingly cold water and enjoy the fantastic views of Stoos-Fronalpstock and other mountaintops as well as the Rütliwiese, the birthplace of Switzerland.

Looking up at two characteristic peaks of the Mythen in the east, we biked the final stretch along today’s third lake, the Lauerzsee, a lovely small lake, on the other side of Mt. Rigi.

It is great to look at Mt. Rigi from every angle and visit three lakes. Despite the persistent traffic, this is one of the most scenic bike tours we’ve done.

Fly Fishing? Really?

I have never fished – at least I never caught anything. But I have always been fascinated by the aesthetics of fly fishing. The setting, usually beautiful nature spots, and the graceful movements of a fisher casting lines. The first video shows an aspirational fisher casting lines not so gracefully, yet…

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Aabachtobel Hike on a former coal mine site

12km, 2h40m / Horgen – Hegimoos – Steinacher – Au – Horgen

This afternoon we made a pleasant walk into a gorge in Horgen (Aabachtobel).  The moist banks of the little stream Aabach were full of bear garlic flowers and distinctive garlic smell was in the air.  We made a plan to return next March to collect these fragrant leaves for pesto.

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Flaacher Asparagus

Flaach is an area in north-eastern Switzerland known for its production of vegetables and in particular for asparagus. After our bike tour, we dropped-by two “Hofläden” (unattended farm shops) and bought the produce for the week…

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Biking along the River Rhein & Rheinfall

4h, 38 km / Alten – Marthalen – Neuhausen am Rheinfall – German border (closed) – Rheinau – Ellikon am Rhein – Alten

Today’s bike tour is full of highlights.

In the chilly morning air we start almost alone from Alten towards Marthalen, a village we have never heard of before. Surprised by all those timber-framed, red and white houses, I decide to make a first impromptu sight-seeing detour. I could spend hours looking at these charming old houses, wandering into those small alleys, gazing at carefully maintained details, and totally forgetting time. A happy day is starting… Read More