Alps · Grindelwald · Noonie · Switzerland

A hiking weekend in Grindelwald

While my mom was here, she wanted to take a trip to stay in the Alps. When in Switzerland, right? Grindelwald had long been on my “must see” list, so we figured now was as good a time as ever. We loaded up our hiking boots and got in the car for the beautiful drive south.

The Alpine lakes of the Interlaken area, on the way to Grindelwald

 

You know you’re in the mountains when your GPS looks like a knot.
 
The drive the the Interlaken area is gorgeous,but what made it most magical was a little encounter with some cows. My mom happened to ask what I wanted to do for my birthday, which was the following weekend. I began to whine about how I really wanted to go watch “the cows come home,” a centuries-old Swiss tradition in which the farmers bring their cows down from the mountains for the winter. Swiss villages do beautiful processions and festivals to mark this occasion. However, Marc and Vin had the car reserved that weekend for a hockey tournament, and with only one car, I was out of luck. I literally had not finished whining five minutes when this happened:
That’s right. The cows came home. And they ran us off the road! It was magic. Indescribable. They were thumping up against our car, the kids were squealing with excitement, Penny was going nuts, and I got my wish right then and there. It was quite a moment for us!
After we gathered our composure, we continued on a few minutes down the road to Grindelwald. We had booked a basic Swiss chalet for the weekend, and it was cute and simple, but the view was…spectacular.
 Our view. Goodness, it was pretty!
 
Happy to have their Noonie along with them for this special weekend.
 
First thing on our list was taking the First Grindelwald gondola up to get to the trottibike area. My mom has never loved gondolas, so Sophie held her hand on the way up.
My mom and Sophie, riding the gondola up.
Family photo, courtesy of Noonie, with Grindelwald in the background.
 
Trottibikes are a hybrid bike/scooter. We rented them to ride down the mountains. It was a gorgeous, fun ride! My mom shrieked the whole way down.
While the Swiss do not have strict requirements on rider size (in true Swiss “you’re on your own – good luck” fashion), Juliana just did not have the hand strength to squeeze the hand break on the trottibike. So, Marc and J hiked down the mountain. That little girl has some strong legs, I tell you.
 Stopping for a rest.
 
 They found a great playground on the way down.
 
The hills are alive…
 
The next day, we all slept in and then enjoyed a cozy little breakfast at the main hotel’s restaurant. Then, off we went for a long hike up at First. The day started out rainy and cloudy, but soon cleared up.
 
 Good morning from Sophie and Penny!
 
 Breakfast with Noonie
 Vin, getting impatient, waiting for us to finish breakfast and leave for the hike.
 
Making our way to the First gondola.
 Hiking in the Alps above Grindelwald, Murren and Wengen.
 With Penny, our AlpenHund.
 
Sophie, who was braver than her mama, and went out on this swaying catwalk, high above the valley below.
I think my mom enjoyed her stay in the Swiss Alps. Thank you, Grindelwald!

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