I had big plans for Day 6. Forecast was calling for sun in the morning, rain in the afternoon… so let’s take a gamble and head up the Eiger Express for a hike!
The Eiger mountain is one of the most recognisable peaks in Switzerland. It’s just shy of 4000 meters high and towers over Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen. The southern side faces the Jungfrau Glaciers (the most glaciated area in the entire alps) and the north side of the mountain is the famous ‘North Face’ — The biggest North Face in the Alps with a huge history of climbing disasters given it’s reputation of being one of the hardest and most dangerous ascents in Europe.
The Eiger Express Cable car brings you up from Grindelwald to the base of the North Face. From there you can either hike down, or you can continue up to the ‘Jungfrauhoch, the Top of Europe’ building by train. This building is up beyond the glaciers, and boasts not only amazing views in all directions, it’s also Europe’s highest railway station at almost 3500 meters.
But it’s also 200 CHF per person (around 200 Euros) and I figured since we’d already been to Glacier Paradise in Zermatt, and to the top of Mont Blanc…. this really wasn’t worth the expense to us. So I purchased tickets to take the Eiger Express up to the North Face. Then the plan was to do a good long hike down to the car-free village of Wengen. And from there take the train back UP the mountain and then down into Grindelwald.
So it sounds like a good plan, good day.
Except it wasn’t.
Liam lost his temper big time, because I shouted at two girls who stepped in front of my car TWICE without looking. And to be fair to me… I didn’t call them names, I just shouted at them to use the crosswalk.
Apparently this was very embarrassing to Liam who spent the next 15 minutes shoulting at me about how I have anger issues, and that nobody likes me and called me quite the collection of unsavoury names. (yeah… I’m the one with anger issues LOL) which of course resulted in me shouting at him that he was not entitled to speak to me like that and that there would be repercussions.
And there were. And still are. Over two full weeks later and he’s still not allowed youtube.
So anyway. Up we went. Grabbed a snack at the cafe at the top and headed off on our hike. Liam was a good 10 meters behind me and neither of us saying a word. Not gonna lie…. the quiet was very peaceful. And everytime Liam had something he wanted to communicate to me he either pantomimed it, grunted, or sent me a whatsapp (that I refused to read). He had made up his mind to not say a word.
so tra la la. Peaceful hike. Exceptional scenery. The hike down to Wengen was quite long, but not difficult or steep. But the weather was definitely making a change and rain was coming…
We arrived in Wengen fairly late in the afternoon… at least 3pm. Not a lot of options for eating, but we found a cute hotel garden restaurant, and took a seat. They apologised that the kitchen was mostly closed for lunch but we could order salad or Flammekuchen. (Flammekuchen is a kind of really thin pizza, with a cream sauce instead of tomato sauce. Topped with bacon and onion.)
Well, it was SO GOOD that Liam broke his vow of silence because he wanted a second one. He became a bit more chatty after that 😉
As we sat eating, the sky opened and it started raining heavily. We moved undercover, and ordered a third Flammekuchen (to share) and another wine (for me). And just enjoyed the rain (it’s still relentlessly over 30 back home, without a drop of rain in sight — biggest drought in over 500 years!)
We dashed to the train station and started our ascent so we could go back down the other side to go home.
When we reached the train station mountain pass summit at Grosse Scheidegg we had to get off to change trains. The rain was just easing off, and the clouds were opening up to let some sun through. Of course my first thought was — rainbows!! I bet there will be some great rainbows in these conditions!!!
And we were not disappointed. Not only amazing rainbows, but another fox had come out of the grasslands, probably looking for dropped food at the train station — and I struggled to choose what to get photos of!!! I didn’t get any great photos of the fox, but we’ll still remember it.
It’s a pity that Liam’s outburst had to put such a downer on the day, as it was a truly exceptional hike — from the bleak ruggedness of the north peak, to the lush woodlands around Wengen. And Liam of course still struggling with an infected toe (or two).
Glad we didn’t take Lola with us… would have been a bit too long for our little lady. We’ll make it up to her tomorrow.
and here we go.... not speaking.
pity we weren't speaking, it was such an impressive surrounding and it would have been fun to explore before heading onwards. Of course his toes always hurt....
On our way down to Grosse Scheidegg plateau -- a cute water reservoir and inside the hut is an interactive rock face that showed you all of the various climbing routes on the North Face
I have no idea if he likes it or not.......
But I think it's stunning.
We came across a rather muddy pond and were enjoying looking at the tadpoles and dragonflies..... until this comedian came stomping and paddling through!
So many tadpoles, many well on their way to becoming frogs. Not something Liam gets to see in city.
We even came across this refrigerated cheese hut, which operates on the honour system! Take some cheese and leave the payment in the box!
Finally approaching Wengen. Liam almost happy.
But NOW he's happy. One of his favourite foods of the whole trip.
And then it rained.......
And kept raining as we headed back up the mountain.
Just easing off as we reach the Grosse Scheidegg pass to change trains and head down the other side....
I cannot tell you how many rainbow and fox photos I took at this moment. Isn't it stunning! How lucky we were.....