You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
Mainly to walk over some old unmarked trails, and to see how the wood ants are doing this year (19 June 2016).
We're coming up to the World War Two dragons' teeth near the Perroude du Vaud, above the Vaudoise village of Le Vaud. (If the French, or more likely their Handlers at the time, had become unruly and tried to come over this pass into Switzerland . . . no way!)
And joining the Chemin des Crêtes long-distance hiking path
The farm called Perroude du Vaud
Perroude du Vaud, along the Chemin des Crêtes
Our guide for today is, once again, Dr Joe.
We're leaving the Chemin des Crêtes now and heading for an unmarked trail through the forest on the far side of this meadow. It was there that, about a decade ago, we became briefly obsessed by the huge population in the woods of giant wood ant nests, so obsessed in fact that two wildlife magazines were desperate to borrow some photos and invite a University of Lausanne wood ant expert to explain the phenomenon.
As we enter the forest, we lace the boots tightly to keep the rogue ants out.
A small anthill. Disappointing so far.
And another -- but they seem few and far between for some reason. Perhaps it's another impact of the Climate Change Hoax.
A few more are appearing as we march along, and fairly good-sized.
We lost the rest of our party briefly, but here he comes now.
We're passing the farm and summer weekend buvette the Perroude de Marchissy, which sits along the Chemin des Crêtes, but we're still bushwhacking down in the forest, for fun.
Not that it's all that straightforward
Repairing the winter's damage
Now we're up to the Crêt de la Neuve, 1494m, about halfway between the Col de la Givrine and the Col du Marchairuz on the Chemin des Crêtes. It's raining again.
The observation deck on the Crêt de la Neuve
Looking to the southeast towards Lake Geneva
Crêt de la Neuve
A mysterious bundle on the ridge near the observation deck
A kidnapping victim, perhaps; we hope not.
It's a pile of fireplace logs in bonfire configuration, presumably stored for the 1 August Swiss National Day celebrations, with their mountaintop bonfires.
We're leaving Crêt de la Neuve down the far side.
We were planning to circle around on another unmarked trail homeward, but the forestry fellows have been here with their huge machines and have destroyed much of that trail, so now we're lost.
Still attentive to nearby anthills, but still lost
Undeterred by a little rain, we proceed in the only direction that makes any sense at this point.
And rejoin the trail that had been hidden from us by the worthy foresters and their huge machines. And the rain is letting up a bit.