Swiss Adventures

By Mary Burnham (all photos copyright)

The well-heeled of the world play on Switzerland’s slopes all winter, leaving summer and fall for the outdoor adventurer to enjoy off-season rates and scenery unparalleled anywhere in the world.

Picture-book snow-capped mountains are the backdrop for glacier trekking, canyoneering, hiking and rafting. There's the history and culture of the oldest democracy in the world (founded in 1291), top-notch lodging, and clean, on-time rail service just steps away from trailheads. All this created one of our all-time favorite adventures.

But a successful and safe trip relies so much on the people, from helpful tourism folks like young Angela Nussbaum in St. Moritz, to Bernard Stucky, the 60-year-old mountain guide who held my hand when I hesitated jumping a bottomless crevasse.

Everyone impressed us with their generosity, fitness, and their ability to speak three, four - even five languages!

Hope you enjoy this photo story and the others (see left column). For more info, please visit Switzerland Tourism.

We jumped many a crevasse; only this one had a bridge. Since it was fall, some crevices were flowing with water the color of the Caribbean.

Make out the hut about 2/3 up - the glacier used to be that high when the first hut was built a century ago. See the zig-zag ladder going up to it?

Yes, we had to climb it to reach our bed for the night!

We're fast friends after being harnessed together for a day! From left: Bernhard Stucky our Swiss guide, Alex & Craig from Miami, Sofie our translator, Bill & Mary

Looking back up our route down the glacier

Nuns on their way to mass. Notice the hiking poles and boots!

"Maria zum Schnee" or St. Mary of the Snow, a 300-year-old church still in use.

Toasting the end of a great trip at the Alpfrieden Hotel