Day 25 - Switzerland

We were up early this morning, 7am breakfast and then into the cab to the Milano Centrale to grab our train to Lugano in Switzerland. The train ride up through the northern Italian lakes area was spectacular, but only a small taste of the mountainous awesomeness that Switzerland has to offer. We drove through the St Gotthard tunnel; a 17km tunnel through the alps. As if that wasn't hairy enough, we then drove up and over the Susten Pass on our way to Lauterbrunnen. It was scary for the fact that the entire trip is a narrow two way road overlooking cliffs and steep valleys and we were constantly being overtaken by insane Valentiono Rossi wannabes. Eventually we reached our breathtaking accommodation in Lauterbrunnen. The view from our balcony was magical!

Männlichen

For over a year now, I have had this image as my background on the computer at work.

OMG!

The second I saw it, I decided I had to go there, and today was the day I was able to fulfil that dream.

We quickly dumped our bags and got down to the train station for the first train up to Wengen to catch the cable car up to Männlichen. There is an 8 week maintenance period where the cars don't run between the Summer hiking season and the Winter ski season. We caught the 4:00pm car with the last one for 8 weeks heading up the mountain at 4:45pm. When you look at the photos, you'll see why I was so desperate to get up there on such a beautiful clear day. 

The cable car took us up 800 metres in about 3 minutes. The ridge sits at about 2,200m and after only a short walk, I could definitely notice the thinning air. I wanted to climb to the 2,350m summit, but time and my desire not to push my physical limits in an oxygen depleted environment thought better of it. Next time...

After our adventure up the mountain, we went back to our apartment and soaked in the view from our balcony at sunset.

Life is good!