Monday, 12 September 2016

My First Swiss Hike!

Zermatt, Switzerland

"Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home, that wilderness is a necessity." -John Muir

Little update for those who don't know: I've packed my bags and left Singapore in search of wilder things. Okay, for 4 months at least HAHAHA. I'm now in Paris for an exchange program & after hastily chucking my luggage into accommodation, I ventured off to breathtaking Switzerland.

These are pictures of our adventure at the 5 Lakes Hike in a quaint little town called Zermatt, with amazing views of Mt.Matterhorn (also known as the Toblerone mountain because it's the mountain on the Toblerone chocolate packaging) throughout the hike. It was proclaimed to be a 2.5hr hike but we took... 6 hours. Partly because of the many photo-stops, mostly because we were just so awestruck and immensely distracted by the view.

Growing up in the city, it would seem absurd to describe myself as a country girl but I really am one at heart. My love for horses would attest to that (deeply contemplative upon a 1-week Iceland riding trip but it's in the thousands sooooo daddy? mummy?) as do my rash inclinations to charge into wooded areas in search for unchartered paths (ask my dog Kobe he knows it all too well).

I've always found myself drawn to the irresistible lull of lush greenery, forested woods and sandy hills so I really am delighted to share the pictures of this hike with you! May it remind you that there is respite for your soul, that there is a place in your heart that cannot be fulfilled by glowing devices.

Take a break with yourself.

"Mountains seem to answer an increasing imaginative need in the West. More and more people are discovering a desire for them, and a powerful solace in them. At bottom, mountains, like all wildernesses, challenge our complacent conviction - so easy to lapse into - that the world has been made for humans by humans.

Most of us exist for most of the time in worlds which are humanly arranged, themed and controlled. One forgets that there are environments which do not respond to the flick of a switch or the twist of a dial, and which have their own rhythms and orders of existence.

Mountains correct this amnesia. By speaking of greater forces than we can possibly invoke, and by confronting us with greater spans of time than we can possibly envisage, mountains refute our excessive trust in the man-made.

They pose profound questions about our durability and the importance of our schemes.

They induce, I suppose, a modesty in us."

- Robert Macfarlane, Mountains of the Mind: Adventures in Reaching the Summit

For my fellow adventurers yet to conquer this one, here's some information about the 5 Lakes Hike:
On Getting There (Zermatt-Sunnega-Blauherd)
1. From Zermatt train station, walk to the Sunnega-Rothorn station.
2. Buy tickets there and take a funicular (a train that goes through a tunnel in a mountain) from the station up to Sunnega and then a cable car from Sunnega up to Blauherd, where you can begin your hike!
3. Alternatively, you could hike up from Zermatt to Sunnega (~2 hours entirely uphill) and/or hike up from Sunnega to Blauherd (~1h 15mins)

Crucial Tips 
4. If you bought the 2-way tickets for the funicular, COME BACK BEFORE 5.45 P.M BECAUSE THE FUNICULAR CLOSES AT 6P.M. If not, you would have to take another 2 hour, extremely steep hike down and experience the pleasure of aching knees and a bruised pride from sliding down rocky areas. Trust me, I know.
5. You might want to be a swimsuit/towel as many of the lakes are very nice to jump into! Or you can watch jealously as furry friends paddle in and soak themselves in the crisp clear waters.

Love and Grace Always,
Trish  x.

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