Hiking my Hood is a series of posts that
brag talk about how I’m surrounded by beautiful scenery and endless possibilities for exhausting hikes. “My hood” is loosely defined as Switzerland.
Remember the awesome duo day cards I was telling you about? The post sold them for a brief period of time in December, and I got a couple – meaning that in January, winter adventures have been a weekly affair. Because we were invited to a party in Lausanne, last weekend’s trip was destined to go to the French speaking part of Switzerland. After some research, we settled for the area of Les Diablerets. A good amount of confusion preceded the hike: unbeknownst to me, there is a village and a mountain massif called Les Diablerets. Once that was clear, we settled on a train and hike route, aiming to use as many public transportation options as possible.
The journey led us from Basel to Col du Pillon, via Zweisimmen and Gstaad – the ride was as scenic as Swiss train journeys get. We had considered to take the cable car up to Glacier 3000 from Col du Pillon, but everything was shut down (not sure why, but oh well).
So instead, we got straight into our hike up to Isenau – from Col du Pillon, just follow the pink markers upwards. The path was snowy and quite soft, making even the minor change in altitude (ca. 250m) quite exhausting.
After about 40 minutes of walking through snowy woods, we got to Lac Retaud, a gorgeous, icy little lake with great views of the mountains around it.
After a quick break, we tackled the remaining 50 minutes up to Isenau by following a really easy-to-walk path through an open white field.
The last 20 minutes were definitely the hardest – we followed a non-path covered in deep snow and got stuck multiple times. For the last five minutes, you can observe skiers on the couple slopes around Isenau.
Fortunately, the restaurant Isenau rewarded us with great value burgers and fries. We had already seen the tiny red cablecar on the way up, and naturally wanted to use it to go down. It’s definitely the smallest one I’ve used to date – just four seats and a very low “ceiling”!
Back down in Les Diablerets, we grabbed Glühwein from an artisan who was selling that and about 300 flavors of jam, then hopped on the small green train to Aigle. Another very scenic ride with great views – you even pass the Chateau d’Aigle on the way. In Aigle, we spontaneously got on a train to Vevey, where we caught the last few sun rays on the shore of the lake.
After a couple hours of playing cards and drinking tea in a Moroccan restaurant in Vevey, we made our way to Lausanne, attended a friend’s party, and got on the last train back to Basel. A very full tour de Suisse with some good hiking – especially recommended if you have a day pass and can just hop on trains and buses that tickle your fancy.
Start of the hike: Col du Pillon
End of the hike: Isenau
Duration: 90 minutes
Fitbit flights of stairs of the day: 135
Fitbit steps of the day: 19,500
Full photo set: flickr