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Summer 2008 -- Kristin and the Bernese Oberland

Rosenlaui -- and the Rosenlaui Gletscherschlucht

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.

Three nights at Rosenlaui, excellent, but now we're checking out. Before we leave, however, we need to find out what all this Gletscherschlucht fuss is about.

The Rosenlaui "Glacier Gorge" seems first to have been commercialized in 1903, and we're going to see if it's worth the 7 Swiss simoleons to get past the gate.

Here's the charming front of the place, back a few days ago on our first "scoping mission", and now we're back.

There's where it all comes out in the end. Now we'll get to see where it all goes in.

Seven francs up front, and we're in.

We wind up the path a bit, admiring the waterfall, and then . . .

What!?!? For seven francs, some view!

We're still moseying in the daylit part of this thing, and noticing how the ground is sloping upwards.

Kristin, who never pauses to take photographs, is leaving us behind on the upward trek.

The water off the Rosenlaui glacier. In full flow, indeed; I'm wondering if this is normal for this time of year, or part of the glacier's final melt-off.

Geological contortions

More wet contortions

Kristin getting a little claustrophobic and, like probably 95% of the tourist visitors here, starting to race through it.

Very narrow. Exceptionally narrow.

Now we're fairly engulfed by narrowness.

And, in fact, there seems to be no end to the narrowness. The Ever Upward Narrowness.

According to the brochures, this place was significantly improved for safety in the 1980s. Good idea.

You might think that you're just ambling along, gazing at the sights, but in fact you're also putting in about 100 metres in elevation gain, which translates into, perhaps, a still more ample lunch later in the day.

Ambient light, with the flash off. A little like a still from a horror movie.

This is the part of the river that's seldom used by the canoeists.

Once emerged at the top of the Rosenlaui Gletscherschlucht, we appreciate the sunlight even more than we did before.

Part of the ravine, just as it drops down into the part you have to pay 7 francs to see.

The Rosenlaui Glacier way on up there (probably a lot farther away than it was a few years ago).

Fujizoom, more views of the upward track

The Rosenlaui Glacier or what's left of it, and somewhere up there, the Dossenhütte refuge (2663m), where this trail is bound but we're not.

We're content, for the moment, to stare up at it in Shock and Awe.

Another Fujizoom of glaciers, I fear, disappearing

Kleine Wellhorn alongside it.

We're starting down again, and snapping wildly in all directions as we descend.

But it's hard to tear oneself away.

Little ancillary, or subsidiary, ravines as we walk back down to the trailhead.

Back down to the trailhead

A later visit to the Gletscherschlucht, 2014

A view across the valley of our hike a few days ago up at Grindelfeld

A last look around the Gletscherschlucht concessions, and I bought a postcard of the street just above the Rosenlaui hotel (80 centimes, but I gave the lady a franc and told her to keep the change):

This is my postcard, now nicely framed and stapled up on my wall: "Postal Bus Parade".

Rosenlaui, and Ulf the VW is reposing in a blue stationwagon manner awaiting our return. Ulf's electronic braking system failed as we were driving up the single-lane road to Rosenlaui, and now we are totally hoping that the brakes are working again as we start back down the mountain. Frequently, I've heard, Volkswagens are self-healing and you don't have to call for the towtruck.

And driving back over the hyperscenic Grimselpass will certainly update us on how those brakes are feeling today.

Kristin and the Bernese Oberland
Sonnenberg hotel, Mürren
Rotstockhütte hike
Grütschalp hike
Rosenlaui berghotel
Grindelfeld hike
First/Grindelwald hike
Rosenlaui Gletscherschlucht

Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 30 August 2008, revised 30 May 2013.

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