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.
Near La Bassine, 25 March 2017
We've wisely left the car just down the hill, near the top of the Route des Montagnes that comes up from the village of Bassins to its communal pastures at La Bassine (1260m).
We were completely confident that once we came up the road to the flat pastures, we would have no need whatsoever for snowshoes today. So, after lengthy discussions, we left them in the car.
The refuge of Peney, suitable for weekend parties, school groups, late afternoon drinking competitions amongst hunters (in season), clandestine coup-plotting, etc. Rental rates are available from the municipal administration in Bassins.
A little more snow than we'd expected, but presumably, once we're past this patch, no problems
A badly mauled anthill awaiting repairs, once the inhabitants wake up from the winter
Deftly avoiding the patches of snow
More lengthy discussions now, not so much about whether we should bring snowshoes, but rather about whose fault it is that we didn't
Plodding along, and sinking in, rancorously
Oh my giddy aunt!
Dr Joe yearns for a snowless way out of here.
These ants are already out of bed and back to work.
The road to Marchairuz is on the far side of the ridge on the left, but so far, no easy way over it. Still . . .
The snowed-in combe goes on for miles.
At last, a way over the ridge
It's not clear whether we've done ourselves any favors.
The farm of Rionde Dessous, about a kilometre to the northeast towards Marchairuz
Back on the road again, which is much easier to walk on but no fun -- we're passing the farm of La Bassine.
The snowfree road back to the car
The Chemin des Narcisses
A scenic hour-and-a-half walk above Les Avants, which is above Montreux, which is on the shore of Lake Geneva, 8 April 2017
We'd planned an early start, but this moving company truck, with no driver in it, rewrites our agenda.
From Les Avants below, we're on the funiculaire up to the hotel of Sonloup to begin our walk.
The up car passes the down car in an orderly and predictable manner. This whole thing is automated now, but the original system was built in 1910 to accommodate the flood of mainly English tourists of the era. The system has recently been renovated but the cars are the originals.
We set off -- always with the hope of seeing lots of the famous narcissus flowers, though we're probably about a month early.
The view across the way -- the Dent du Jaman on the left, and the broad Rochers de Naye in the centre.
The clear-cutters at work on the slope behind the hotel under renovation. A little sign says, in effect, 'don't be angry, we had to cut them all down, they were all diseased'.
Though they don't look particularly diseased to us.
The path leads with some modest ups and downs out to a belvedere overlooking Lac Léman, or Lake Geneva.
This is one of the modest ups.
The so-called "English Riviera" below, from Montreux to Vevey, seen from the Le Cubly belvedere at 1187m altitude.
Down the steps off the front end of the hill
An intersection of paths at the place called Azot; we turn left.
From about 1000m, up we go to the farm of Fiaudire at 1040m. Not too many narcisses to be seen around here.
Next we turn off to the right through the forest
Back to Les Avants
A cute little house on the edge of Les Avants, in the attic of which I lived for 18 months some years ago
The Golden Pass sightseeing train, which travels between Montreux and the Bernese Oberland (the 'MOB')
A group expedition to the Perroude du Vaud
A day out with Joe and Teny, 14 April 2017
We start from the top of the Route des Montagnes again, above the village of Bassins
Bassins' refuge de Peney, in the Bois or Forest of Peney
Catching up on all the news
-- Hey, wait up
The farm of Perroude du Vaud, perched at about 1380m
We especially want to have a look into the big karst holes that lurk here in the forest just below the pastures of Perroude du Vaud.
An arboreal tragedy
A very old tree but with scarcely any soil over the rocks for its roots
In fact, Kristin finds that it's got the special 'Tree Conserved for Biodiversity' sign on it.
At least that tree is still standing.
Back to the car