Hiking the North Face Trail

Day 4 17.5.10

I woke to Matt looking out the window saying “We’re going to have a great day!”  We got up early to have breakfast and get out into the trails.  This was our last day in Murren, so not only did we want to make sure we got out while the weather was good and the skies clear, we needed to get to our next destination, Luzern, at some point.

The beginning of the trail. The sun was trying sooo hard for us!

We walked outside to see mountains surrounding us.  Finally!!  We had some awesome backdrops to look at.  Though we still could not see many of the peaks and probably much more behind those mountains we could see, we were satisfied the minute we started our hike.  The camera’s we’re a-clickin immediately.  We didn’t want to take our chances! 

We decided to take the Northface Trail, from Murren – Allmendhubel (expected time: 2.5 hours).

Web description on Myswitzerland.com:

To this day, climbing the Eiger North Face is considered one of the most difficult mountaineering feats. One gazes at it respectfully and admires the tenacity and courage of the early alpinists who climbed mountain after mountain with little of the modern equipment we have today.

The exciting story of these early mountain pioneers is retold on the two-hour Eiger North Face Trail which connects Allmendhubel to the Spielbodenalp via Mürren. 12 information posts explain the climbing routes, the gear that was used, and other related items. If one is lucky – and carries binoculars – one may well see the action live because there are climbers who try their hand at ascending the Eiger North Face practically daily.

 

We were awe-struck as we started up the paths.  I’ll let the pictures do the explaining, though I can’t say how many times we said “pictures just won’t do this any justice. 

 I will also say that once at the top and along the descent, we were not expecting to be in knee-deep snow!!  We were proud to be the trailblazers for the season.

I had to get this shot of Matt to give some perspective. The pic still just doesn't capture it. Only memory will do, I guess!

The hike was amazing.  We completed it in about 3.5 hours…not bad, considering even Photo Phyllis came out to join Photo Phil and there were many stops for photos.  We had no regrets about staying in Murren a bit longer so that we could enjoy such a treat.

Once the hike was complete, we picked up our bags at the hotel to begin our journey to Luzern.  The train ride was approximately 3 hours.

Lunch on the train...

We arrived in the beautiful city of Luzern around 4:30 pm.  Our bodies were a bit exhausted from the previous 3 days of hiking + 50 lb packs + 20 lb backpacks!  Only us…

We were pleased to see Hotel Des Alpes was not only a short distance from the train station, but also directly on the Reuss River and immediately in front of the Chapel Bridge. 

Chaple Bridge

We dropped off our stuff after checking in. and headed out for a walk around the city, and across the bridge, of course (“Li, can we walk over the bridge again?”).  The city was relatively quiet.  We walked through the Old Town, which is full of shops and lots of building/sculptures for Matt to photograph.   For dinner, we stopped in a little Thai Restaurant in the middle of Old Town, which was actually pretty darn good!  We then walked some more, back over the bridge and to the south side of the river. 

After a bit of walking, we sat by the river on the outdoor patio of our hotel’s restaurant. We decided to try some Apple Strudel with vanilla ice cream.  Yum!

True Swiss Apple Strudel! Mmmmmmmm

That concluded our day.  Plans for Tuesday were to stroll the city again and try to see a few historical sites.

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