Monday, February 20, 2012

Snowshoeing Weekend Day 3: Langis->Fluehli

We start the day with a gentle climb along the road away from Langis. Today there's actually structure in the clouds and we get the occasional glimpse of the sun... nice!

At Glaubenbergpass we put on the snowshoes and then head along the trail through the woods, slowly climbing up to Schnabel. There's a clear trail to follow the whole way, which makes the walking a lot easier. On past Schnabel and up a bit more until p1660, where the trail leads us westwards off the road and up to the pass at 1742m. The clouds are covering the sun again, and it's windy, so Greg has no interest in hanging out here and quickly sets off along the slope towards Ober Serven.
Following the contour line and an at times invisible path we make it to the chapel and have a short water and snack break. Onwards, initially without any visible track, so tramping through the knee deep snow (s l o w...)
until we pick up the trail again. Now it's a really nice walk down through the snow-covered woods to Blattli and further down to Staeldili (unfortunately closed since it's Monday).

From here there's supposed to be a path heading down towards Fluehli, but despite tramping around through the snow a bit, we're unable to find it. The idea of spending the next 3 hours breaking a path through snow is not particularly appealing, so we set off along the road down to Fluehli. The rest of the way down is uneventful; walking the snow-covered road isn't horrible, but neither is it particularly exciting.

At Fluehli we have a bit of time, so we grab a quick bite to eat and marvel at the Fasnacht doings before catching the bus that starts the trip towards home.

And the track:

15.1 km, 380 m hoch, 940 m runter

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Snowshoeing Weekend Day 2: Around Langis

And the track:

10.3 km, 440 m hoch, 440 m runter

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Snowshoeing Weekend Day 1: Sarnen->Langis

And the track:

14.6 km, 1300 m hoch, 350 m runter

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Jura snowshoeing: Im Holz -> Grenchen

A day trip to take advantage of the sun and snow in the Jura.

We started with a bit of an Andrea special: after getting off the train we immediately started climbing. The relatively gentle climb took us out of town, then up through the woods along a well-trodden road. It's good going without the snowshoes and it's great to be outside walking. The temperature isn't too bad (-5 C) and because we're going uphill on the sunny side and there's no wind it ends up feeling quite warm. Along the way we have what would be nice views of the Alps, but it's too hazy (hochnebel) between us and them to see much of anything. Just above Schauenburg we put on the snowshoes and the path takes us more steeply up through the woods until we hit the ridge. Here we discover that it's actually quite windy and, as we walk directly into the wind and swirling snow, -5 C no longer seems warm at all! We're both very happy when we reach Althüsli, where we stop for lunch (too cold for lunch outside) and to warm up.

After lunch we head back west (yay! wind in our backs!). The path takes us up to the Stallberg and then we follow the ridge along the Stallflue (we've been here before under very different conditions), then a very nice path on the ridge through the woods before heading across the meadow over the Wandflue towards Obergrenchenberg. From here we had to Untergrenchenberg, down another nice path through the woods to Stierenberg (looks like fun sledding!), then along a forest road (more great sledding!) to Grenchen itself and the train back home.

The hochnebel kept us from having the fantastic Alp views we should have had, but it was still a nice sunny day on the snowshoes.

And the track:

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Snowshoeing in the Jura: Passwang -> Bachmaettli

Got to take advantage of sunny Sundays when there's snow in the Jura.

We start at the bus stop just before the Passwang tunnel (we started a trip here last year too). The first priority is to get moving and get to the sun: we're starting in the shade, the wind is blowing, and it's cold (<-10 C). We walk pretty quickly up to the ridge to find the sun and then head west towards Hohe Winde (last year we went east). At Hinter Beibelberg we put on the snowshoes and head off the road.  From here out it's a nice path along the ridge, sometimes under the snow-covered trees, sometime in the open, along to Vorder Erzberg where we stop to warm up and have lunch (too cold for lunch outside!). After lunch we climb the last bit up to the Hohe Winde. The day is a bit hazy, so the views aren't what they could be, but luckily it's not living up to its name: the wind isn't too bad.
 Still, it's not a place to linger, so we follow the path down the other side. After a bit of descending we hit a meadow and have two choices for direction. We take the "SAC Jubilaumsweg" and head into the woods. It pretty quickly becomes clear that this is not a good winter path (it's a direttisima, the path is might steep, and it's going to be difficult to follow), so we switch back and head back the other way. Now it's a nice path through the woods, always gently descending. Past Mittlere Rotmatt we go, then down, past Neuhof, and down the last bit to the Joggenhus. We've still got 25 minutes until the bus comes and the restaurant is unfortunately closed, so to stay warm (we're in the shadow), we head off down the road to the next bus stop at Bachmaettli. Now it's too far to make the next bus stop (and walking along the road isn't super pleasant), so we find a spot in the sun, drink our tea, and wait for the bus to arrive.

The track: