Dwight Peck's personal website

March 2012 views in the Jura

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.

Kristin's here, and we're out for a mid-winter struggle through the snowy mountains of the Jura.

3 March 2012: Braving the cold, Kristin's sorting out her maladjusted snowshoes.

And now we're ready to continue up the hill.

Not much of the old track is perceptible but it will do.

Kristin, tanning, on the meadows of La Foirausaz

Turning towards home

A liaison track leading to Chemin à Marc


Back onto another trail of sorts

A grand day out

The forest of Fréchaux

Dr Pirri treading softly, 4 March 2012

A dirty old forest, with no new snow on it

Down a long combe below Grand Fuey

We've seen this bridge before. We'll go under it.

No, this time we turn northeast and go across it. But . . .

. . . snowshoes off.

A tacky little secondary home in the forest of Fréchaux

We're fed up walking back and forth on these muddy forestry tracks. Dr Pirri goes straight up. With only one skipole.

The car's just a few hundred metres up the hill.

Professor Pirri hauls himself up the hill with only one pole, because he tore up his shoulder tendons recently in a skiing accident and is presently an arm-challenged person. A person of one-armness.

St Livres

10 March 2012: We've left the car up on the hillside on the far side of the Aubonne River, and we're exploring.

Kristin is instantly alert

Ah, yes! A bunch of donkeys.

Kristin says "dahn-keys" like everybody else. In northern New Jersey and Brooklyn (nowhere else), we grew up with "dun-keys". Either way, they're not very inspiring.

But Kristin loves nothing so much as a dunkey (except a marmot). (And a kitty cat.)

The village of St Livres on the eastern side of the Aubonne

The town of Aubonne on the far side of ravine, with Lake Geneva beyond it

St Livres and the vineyards

A zoom view of a vineyard hut and flag on the ridgeline, the Tower of Aubonne on the far side of the ravine, and the Savoie Alps on the far side of Lake Geneva

The "parcours vita" -- Swiss insurance companies install fitness courses in almost every village, but they don't always work right.

Finally (18 March) -- some snow

At the Col du Marchairuz, Üli's trunkful of snowshoeing gear finally gets some use.

The hotel at the Col du Marchairuz, with the snowplow taking a short break

Üli VW will wait for us (we have his key).

Passing by the hotel and off into the forest

We were here three days ago with Professor Pirri, but the track is gone now.

So almost instantly, we're lost.

It's all very beautiful and we're making progress in some direction.

But not really on the trail anymore

We're making a good track for subsequent hikers. But to where?

The jumbly side of the Marchairuz ridge, southwest of the Col, on the Lake Geneva side

Out of the forest dells, to the heights

It's extremely easy to get turned round in the Jura mountains.

This looks interesting.

Today we're trying to find the Fontaine Valier farther along the ridge -- the only natural water source in the mountains here, as I understand it -- so we're looking for an informal track down the southeastern side of the ridge . . .

. . . and perhaps this is it.

But perhaps not.

We're pretty lost, to be candid for once.

This little line of cliffies leads down onto a kind of shelf along the side of the mountain . . .

. . . but we're running out of shelf. We should be higher up. Or lower down.

Dead end, it seems.

And going down at this point is not in the cards.

So it's up.

Subsequent map consultations (with glasses on) argue that we've gone well past the Fontaine Valier, probably below us somewhere, but we're giving up for today . . .

. . . except that we're lost again. Ha ha, this time we've got a compass.

Sure enough, we're on the former Chemin des Crêtes path now. Probably.

Yoopi, an hour later, the hotel at the Col du Marchairuz manifests itself.

It's a very desirable outcome at this point.

The Col du Marchairuz

Wood carvings out front by Paul Monney

Thanks for waiting, Üli.

Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 20 March 2012.

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