Dwight Peck's personal website

Winter 2004-2005

as life's hectic non-stop party threatens to get out of control and really exhausting

Nostalgic visit to Leysin

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.

The narrator dwelt quite contentedly in Leysin from 1977 to 1992 but had to leave, alas. But now he's back for holidays, January 2005, and his friends have come along.

The Chalets Ermina will be our preferred stopping place in Leysin from now on. The proprietor, Ariane Giobellina, was our esteemed colleague in the American College Library in the 1980s and has now got these two brilliant bed-and-breakfast accommodations in the lower part of the village.

That's Chalet Ermina 2 (left) and Chalet Ermina 1 (right) in January 2005. Book your hols now, http://www.ermina.ch/.

Dr Pirri, former President of the American College of Switzerland in Leysin, and Ms Hagge of Boston, USA, on the balcony of Chalet Ermina 1, preparing for wholesome, healthful fun in January 2005.

Dr Pirri darts forward towards the abandoned ski-lift restaurant of La Solacyre on a reconnaissance mission for tomorrow's walk up La Riondaz.

Never one to take the easy way home, at nightfall Dr Pirri plunges down into the forest towards Leysin, literally.

All's well that ends well.

Quite apart from "wholesome, healthful fun", Kristin, sicker than a dog, waited out today's hike in the Chalet Ermina, but was on the mend again by the morrow . . .

. . . and ready for a brisk and invigorating walk back up the Bois de Prafandaz.

Kristin, Teny, and Joe walking up the well-traveled Bois de Prafandaz. One can scarcely remember ever having seen snowshoe tracks in the Leysin mountains in the 1980s, but now they're everywhere.

Teny and Joe

The Bois de Prafandaz, January 2005

Approaching the back side of La Riondaz

Whilst our colleagues share pages of the International Herald Tribune on the balcony of the abandoned restaurant of Solacyre, the lads make a brief detour up to the top of La Riondaz for old times' sake. (The river Rhône can just be seen about a mile below in the top left corner of the photo.)

Looking somewhat gaspingly towards the summit on a bright day in a so far nearly snowless winter.

The Kuklos turning restaurant on La Berneuse, with the Tours d'Aï and Mayen behind, from the side of La Riondaz.

Dr Pirri with his youthful knees awaits the narrator's very slow progress back down the ridge.

From Solacyre, the party descends by the forest path towards the big avalanche digue or barrier built in 1979 near the Bergerie (after an avalanche off the Riondaz destroyed the tennis courts at the Grand Hôtel down in the village).

The dinosaur of La Solacyre

Joe and Teny heading for Leysin at the end of the day, for a splendid dinner at the new folklorique Fromagerie restaurant in the old village.

With a wave goodbye to Ariane and the Chalets Ermina in Leysin, we go back "to the valley" and vow to return. http://www.ermina.ch/.

Some additional Leysin scenery from the same visit

A few more shots of downtown Leysin in 2005

Kristin's January 2005 visit

Visit to Leysin

Hike across "Le Plateforme"

Hike up Le Noirmont

Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 29 March 2005, revised 25 November 2012, 5 January 2014.

American College of Switzerland

Leysin village

Leysin scenery