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  • Day11

    Maybe it was revenge...

    July 25, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 10 °C

    It occurred to me that perhaps my paragliding instructor suggested this :easy waterfall hike" in the woods as revenge for ruining his perfect take off stats. Or maybe it was that at several thousand feet in the air, everything looked a lot flatter. For we climbed straight up the road and then through a "short cut" through a farmer's field which was straight up, and then through the woods straight up. Among the way Tim acquired a hiking partner of the feline variety. We left the cat behind after crossing through a cow meadow, but then upon our return(we gave up before the falls as we had been taking that short hike for two hours), here came the cat up the trail to join us for the hike out. Then we met a lovely Swiss couple on holiday who invited us to their home in the mountains for coffee and homemade bread. We were told by our hosts, Andy and Marianne of Zurich, that a "short hike" to the Swiss starts a one hour. Good to know since our total hiking time was over three hours... in the heat.Read more

  • Day15

    Thanks for traveling with us...

    July 29, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    Well, friends. All good things must come to an end. Here are our final pictures from our walk to Gimmelwald. We finished our day by going to Hotel Stechelberg, at the end of the valley, for homemade spaghetti, a Greek salad, and, finally, homemade Black Forest cake. Since the next bus would not be there for 40 minutes, we walked a final time in the cool of evening along the Aare River to our home. We said goodbye to all our favorite cows, and we reveled in the sound of the river as we debriefed what we learned during this adventure. Having you all with us gave us great joy. Can’t wait to see you again soon.

    Love you all...feeling blessed.
    Read more

  • Day8

    The blooper video

    July 22, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ☁️ 20 °C

    Just walked back on the trail after our paraglide landing down the road from our home. Boy, ice cream never tasted so good. No pictures yet, but here’s the scoop. Leaving the cable car in Mürren, we hiked up a steep hillside to the launch area. Tim and his instructor had a flawless take off. I assured Buzz, my instructor, that I would follow all instructions and obviously had misunderstood one, so instead of launching we veered, got tangled up with each other and all the lines, and rolled down the meadow we had just. Climbed. But then we had a great take off for the 2nd attempt.

    The winds were good and we floated, rising up and down, turning in tight swirls and slow circles. You fly over the tops of huge trees and along granite cliffs, past waterfalls and in sight of glaciers. It is like being a human drone. Buzz let me fly it for awhile...so beautiful.

    I rate this experience even higher than swimming with Sharks. Unbelievable! Photos and video when we return!
    Read more

  • Day6

    I hope someone knows CPR

    July 20, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    At last sighting in Birg, Tim was headed to the Skywalk, which is attached to the side of a cliff. I made it about 100 yards and abject terror took over. I took a pic of Tim before he turned the corner. Next stop Murren! Love having so many cable cars but I am ready to start walking downhill. You wouldn't believe how many people they cram in!Read more

  • Day8

    Mental preparation begins.

    July 22, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    It is 6 am here, and you are still living in yesterday as I write this, which is mind boggling. Due to the naps, we sat outside and waited for stars to come out last night. The moon is at 79% brightness, so we gave up at 11 p.m. Now I am sitting outside with a cup of coffee listening to birds and waterfalls on a hewn log bench. The sounds of cow bells echo in the hills as they work their way down the slopes to graze. In seven hours we will meet the folks who will guide us down from the Alps in paragliders. From the valley, we will take a cable car back to Murren and hike up about 3/4 of a mile. Then they spread out the chutes one behind another and we strap in. From that point, we simply take turns walking down the steep meadow. The wind and physics take over after that. I am terrified of heights, but this particular event, like swimming with sharks, just captivates my spirit. Here are a few pics from my morning thoughts in the garden of our "home away from home."Read more

  • Day4

    Home sweet home in the Alps

    July 18, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Just sitting here in our home away from home for two weeks staring up the valley we will paraglide into. Outside the chickens are crowing and the owner of this vrbo is working hard on the yard. We have completely unpacked and plan to have this truly be a home away from home. Enjoy the pics. We are walking to the waterfall inside the mountain which is a ten minute walk from here, so maybe more pics tonight.Read more

  • Day4

    A walk by the river in the Alps.

    July 18, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    We can cross the street and walk for miles on a path by the Aare River. We watched paragliders land near the cable cars and talked with a mom with three kids from Oakland who were glowing from the experience. The landscape literally gurgles all around us... waterfalls gushing from the rocks around us and the river flowing nearby. The cows walking across the path had just been milked... later the farmer rode his bike carrying fresh pails of milk to the home across the street from us. You can buy it in the mornings fresh!Read more

  • Day5

    The very mountains shook...

    July 19, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Today, after I walked to the campground store across the street for coffee, we traveled 1/4 mile to the entrance to Trammelbach Falls. This is a World UNESCO site and the only waterfall in the world that falls INSIDE a mountain. After a short hike, you enter a cable car type elevator and go up six stories. From there, you hike straight up for four more stories inside the mountain, which is filled with mist and the deafening sound of the rushing water that has carved fantastic formations into the rock. Then you hike ten stories down passing through wet stairs in the center of the cliff and sunny places where the rock has worn through. The very mountain rumbled with the force of the pounding rivers that meet there. Our ten day travel pass was purchased today, so tomorrow we begin adventuring in the Alps. This gets us on almost all buses, trains, cable cars, funiculars and boats for “free”. Next stop “Top of the World”.Read more

  • Day6

    When the rides are free...

    July 20, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Following another home cooked meal, we made use of our regional pass and unlimited cable car rides to ascend again into the Alps. This time we got off in Mürren and then walked down to Gimmelwald. The air was filled with the sounds of running water, and cows and sheep grazing on the steep hillsides with bells, each species with its own timbre. Since our knees are giving out, we are setting on a bench awaiting the ride down and free bus back to our abode. Goodnight from Switzerland, even though you are eating lunch and it’s yesterday where you are.Read more

  • Day8

    No cash, no problem

    July 22, 2019 in Switzerland ⋅ ☁️ 20 °C

    When I didn't have cash for my goods at the campground store across the street, the clerk asked where I was staying. When I said, "Heidi's " she replied, Oh jah, Heidi. Just pay when you have cash." She sent me on my way with the groceries. To kill time before our paraglide, we bussed to Lauterbrunnen and hiked up the iconic Falls there. Had to stop part way up and sing in the tunnel! T minus two hours to flight!Read more

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