Day 6: Mount Pilatus/Zurich

>> Friday, July 17, 2009

My last day in Switzerland I went to Luzern (Lucerne) and then a short distance to Mount Pilatus. The town was quite charming although I only got see what was along the river. There will not be a whole lot of commentary for this post just a lot of awe inspiring pictures. I will give you the run down at the end.

Waiting at port to catch my ship for the beginning of my "Golden Round Trip" From Lucerne you take the lake steamers to the village of Alpnachstad then board the steepest cogwheel railway in the world for a 45 minutes journey to Pilatus-Kulm at 2070m with magnificent views of the Alps and Lucerne. From there you take the cable car down to Kriens (482m) and the local bus back to Lucerne. Of course when I got there they said it was too windy to take the cable car so I took the cogwheel back down and then the train back to Lucerne. Very sad!

Pier shot

My journey awaited

Along the lake the views were amazing. I got a few shots but eventually had to move inside. It started getting really cold. Of course I forgot to put my windbreaker back in backpack from the previous rainy day at Chateau Chillion. Lets just say it was getting cold fast! We hit Europe during a cold spell which we were not packed for. Everyone kept saying how unseasonably cold it was.

Wouldn't it be nice to live there?

Yet another fashion/hair disaster! The comb over from hell. This guy stood in front of my window I was seated at for what seemed like forever so her deserves to be pictured in a guest role of European hair at its worst!

Arriving at port. It was a long boat ride. I actually started falling asleep sitting up!

What I am about to go up! The slope is 48% at some points on the cogwheel. Whoa!

The 45 minutes journey was pleasant. I could role down the window and I got some amazing shots. But it started getting extremely cold the closer I got to the top so I had to role up the window. Somehow my short sleeves and jeans were not holding up. Just think I had considered shorts that morning!

Swiss Flag Flying high on the mountain

These are at the top. Just so you know when I got to the top it was SNOWING! WTF! It is July. Needless to say I did not stay long. Especially once I went to price a jacket in the gift shop and it was over a hundred dollars.

Random cows with REAL COW BELLS. They rang beautifully through the mountains.

It was completely cloudy when I arrived at the top but it cleared up quick and I got some good shots intermingled in here. I guess it was just a low snow cloud! The snow cleared up quick too. It wasn't sticking just kind of flurring

I honestly felt like belting out into a course of the "sound of music" throughout the majority of this trip

The hills are alllliviiiivvvee with the sououuuunnnddd ooooff fmmmmmuussiicc!

Finally back down!
This trip had potential. It was probably my least favorite thing I did but I think by this point I was done being alone, there was no audio tour to keep me occupied or anything interesting to learn about the history. It was a 7000ft mountain, point blank. Plus the weather and turning blue was making me cranky. It was beautiful though as you can see from the pictures. I don't think I was dressed to let this excursion live up to its highest marks.
When I got back we headed to the restaurant ontop of Zurich which had an amazing view, a waitress that spoke hardly any English, and amazing food. Or course you had to hike 5 miles at an extremely steep slope in the rain and cold to get to it. But the food was good and the wine and beer were flowing! I thought I was going to have a coronary on the way to and back from it. AND it was in the middle of the woods with no lights and I (along with Michael) were convinced we were going to be murdered and then eaten by a bear. No really it could have happened on the way to dinner and you never would have been the wiser. My question is how do old people get to the restaurant? There were no cars! Ugh anyway. The food was good and the view amazing!
If you think we look rough here you should have seen us after the hike! At least I worked off my fabulous meal.

Bye Bye Switzerland...Viva la France!