Hiking & Cayoning – Interlaken, Switzerland

[ 1 ] September 14, 2011 |

Our second and third days in Interlaken were spent soaking up all the scenery and adrenaline Interlaken had to offer.  We decided to spend our second day in Interlaken taking on an ambitious 6-hour hike across a ridgeline in the surrounding Swiss alps.  Our journey started off with a 45-minute train ride up the first mountain to Schynige Platte.  Initially coal powered, the Schynige Platte Railway dates back to the 1890s and, while now electrified, it still remains an antique treasure.  Given the extreme incline of the journey (25% in some places) it felt more like a train car ratcheting itself up the mountain.  Ears popping from the altitude we climbed nearly a mile in altitude until we finally reached the top of Schynige Platte (6,800 ft) to begin our journey.

Schynige Platte Railway

Schynige Platte Station

Al Ready to Hike?

Motivation in tow we started off on our 6-hour tour of the alps.  Many steps later we reached Faulhorn, the halfway point.  At 2,681 meters (8,796 feet) Faulhorn was the highest point of the trek and a small respite for fellow hikers.

Faulhorn Respite

Five Fingers Meet the Alps

Did I mention the scenery was amazing?

Hiking the Alps

The Swiss Alps

Glacial Lakes

The next day we set our sites on a true Interlaken adrenaline experience and decided to try our hand at Canyoning.  Canyoning is basically a mix of repelling, sliding, and jumping your way down river rapids that cut through a narrow canyon.  Given the glacial cold water and high rains that morning causing an increased danger level (high water levels in the canyon) Al and I decided that I should go this one alone.

Intense experience would probably be an understatement.  I think the video speaks for itself – enjoy!

And yes, I would do it again in a heartbeat.  You might not be able to tell from the video but it started raining again halfway into our trip.  I quickly realized that was not a good thing when our two guides started running us through the canyon like cattle to slaughter.  Ok, bad analogy but you get the point.  When the guide looks worried – no es bueno.  In the end we got out of there before the rains caught us and all was well.

From breathtaking mountain scenery to glacial lakes and streams, Interlaken was a fantastic place to get back to nature and take in the best that mother nature’s bearded grizzly uncle has to offer.  I can’t wait to go back.

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BTW – so when we got back to our tent village we stumbled upon this little contraption built by the locals over at the Animal Farm Hostel.  Yes, I tried it and it was awesome!

Andrenaline Junkies

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Category: Blog, Destinations, Featured Posts, Pat's Blog, Switzerland

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  1. Great photo essay! I was in Interlaken last summer but unfortunately my camera was not too great. I kept telling my friends from home “these pictures don’t do this place justice!” And I heard canyoning was fun, knew a lot of backpackers who even did it twice! I actually did the Canyon Swing instead, also a great option if you’re looking for an adrenaline rush! :)

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