Ski trip to Grindelwald

Trip Start Dec 06, 2009
Trip End Feb 05, 2010

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Where I stayed
Alison & Nathan's place

Flag of Switzerland  , Bern,
Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Hi everyone

Well we were up at 5:30am today and made it to the snow. The train ride there was again very easy and again we were captivated by the amazing scenary. We've never seen mountains that go so high as the clouds. Unfortunately visibility was bad and we didnt get to see the full extent of the height of these mountains but we were still very impressed! We could see snow in the crevices and waterfalls frozen up against the mountain.

It snowed today which was just beautiful and because there was no wind the snowflakes were really light and didnt make us feel any colder. Because it is a weekday and all the kids are back at school, there were hardly any people around so we never had to wait for any chair lifts. Quite often it would just be Daniel and I skiing on our own without seeing anyone else. Definately not a place to ski on your own as there aren't many ski patrols here. For beginners, this was not the place to learn how to ski. Beginner slopes is not how we know them back home in Australia.

We went to hire our gear and was blown away at the cost. Because visibility was bad we also had to get goggles. The hire gear is in very good condition and the staff are very friendly in fitting us with boots and skis. Not knowing what to expect we decided to start in the beginners learning park and was surprised at the steepness of the slopes. Beginners park felt more like intermediate in Australia which was a bit of a shock. Because visibility was so poor we would often be shocked to find ourselves at the edge of a cliff and without realising we would dip into a steep hill. Made for some interesting skiing and somehow we both managed to stay upright on our feet without any tumbles although there were many funny close calls!

The slopes however are really well groomed and there is a lot of beautiful soft powder around. The mountains provided for amazing scenary and a lot of the mountains are covered in forests of trees. So it felt like we were skiing through hundreds of christmas trees!

Switzerland has got to be the most picturesque place we've ever skied at. We both agreed that the mountains were absolutely spectacular and that we'd never seen such thick forests of trees covered in snow. We skied through the most beautiful trail which was surrounded by trees and in the clearing we could see the dark imposing snow capped mountains. Some of these trees had these blood red berries which was a stark contrast to the blinding white snow everywhere.

Although it was -9 up on the mountain we were both very warm in our ski gear and because we weren't familiar with the snow trails we were on high alert not knowing what to expect with each turn. The ski trails here are very long. One took us about an hour to get from the top to the bottom. Seems it is common here to catch a train back up to the top of the mountain instead of catching a normal chairlift - which is a much warmer way of getting up to the top especially if it is snowing. Some of the chairlifts here have these bright orange domes you can pull over yourself anyway to blocke the wind which is a great idea.

The demographic of skiers here are a lot more mature. We hardly saw any young people today and the people who were skiing looked to be in their 50s or more. The Swiss here are certainly very fit and in good health. Although their national food appears to be chocolate and cheese, we have noticed they are very fit here and Alison and Nathan have told us the Swiss are keen hikers in the spring and summer and skiers in the winter. We hope our knees hold up in our old age to be able to ski like these old codges!

We went in to grab some lunch at one of the restaurants at the top of the mountain and had a typical swiss dish with raclette (a type of swiss cheese I think) with ham, pineapple and tomato. Very rich and full of cheesy goodness! And a rosti the shredded potato which is like a hasbrown with egg, cheese and garlic chive butter. It was just divine comfort food and exactly what we craved from skiing.

Daniel explored some more of the mountain on his own doing some more of the difficult ski runs while I drank tea and ordered apple strudal. By early afternoon, visability got a lot worst and it was starting to get dark so we had to head back. We are both quite sore and I know I will definately be suffering from the usual day after aches and pains.

We've enjoyed Switzerland, the outdoor scenary is stunning and we'd love to come back one day in the spring to see these stunning mountains and waterfalls. I know Daniel is very keen to come back and hike around the mountains. Lindt chocolate here is just everywhere. Most of the chocolate bars are less than 2 swiss francs. Although our aussie dollar is almost on parity with the swiss franc, everything seems to be more expensive except chocolate. Daniel and I are absolutely blown away by the cost of meat here! For normal cuts of beef the cost is $50 or more a kilo. Pork, chicken and especially lamb are also very expensive. Seems farmers here arent into raising cattle for meat but would rather raise cattle for cheese and milk. Makes sense because the Swiss are so big on their cheese.

Well enjoy the photos and video footage. I couldnt get any video of Daniel skiing, I cant ski and hold a camera without endangering myself and anyone around me!

Ly and Daniel

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Marina on

Scenery looks great, a place to put on put on our 'to do list.' Not sure about the skiing think the hiking would be a better option for us. Enjoyed looking at the pictures, thankyou.

Shaun on

Looks fantastic .... I'm SOOO jealous! Have been getting so much mileage when I tell people I gave you a Switzerland ski trip as a wedding gift!

Aunty Pete on

Hey not so much of the old codgers over 50 - you don't mean me do you? Glad you are having a wonderful time - did the mountains and snow remind you of Daniel's proposal? You seem to have been away for ages and I just wish when you get back you were a bit closer to me so I could visit more.
Keep on skiing - swoooosh xox

Charles on

HAY!!!!!!!!!....! looks like "Aunty Pete" beat me to it..50..."old codgers"..hello!!!! Only a full public apology will do!!
Bern sounds wonderful, thrilled your doing so much and seeing the "real" places.
May bump into you!!

Hannah on

Hey there Mr and Mrs Reeve! Just catching up on all the entries I've missed. Loving the photos btw! We all had great New Years here ~ Sam went to Falls and I got to be a Storm Trooper for the night at the Casino [check facebook for all the pictures!], had a lot of fun and even had an elderly lady try to pick me up [it's amazing what a helmet does for one's identity!]. Anyways, glad to read you're still having fun!! All your food adventures make me hungry!! Han [and Sam] xx

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