Tuesday, July 27, 2010

It Doesn't Get Much Better

...than this.

RW Head Guide, Ken Fuhrer, shot this photo earlier today while leading a group of hikers on the Zermatt & Saas Fee Flex Tour.

Of all the mountains in Switzerland, the Matterhorn, also known as Monte Cervino (Italian) and Mont Cervin (French), is probably the most famous and recognizable. Its distinct pyramidal shape draws visitors from all over the world and offers a stunning backdrop above the alpine resort village of Zermatt.

Note: The prominent ridge running up and to the right on the front of the Matterhorn is called the Hörnligrat. The Hörnli is one of the most frequented climbing routes to the summit.

Other Ryder-Walker trips that visit the Matterhorn:
Hiker's Haute (guided and self guided)
Swiss Haute Route (self guided only)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Eurostar Offers Direct Service To French Alps


Traveling to the Alps just got easier for our UK travelers. Eurostar, the high speed passenger train linking the UK with the mainland, just announced direct winter service to the French Alps. Return service starts at just £149. The new line services top ski destinations in the French Alps such as Courchevel, La Plagne, Tignes, Meribel and Les Arcs. You can read more about it here.

This new service offers a convenient link between the UK and Paradiski, a popular French Alps ski tour offered by our sister company, Alpenglow Ski Safaris.

We hope this service continues, and expands, into next summer.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Trail Cam: Eiger Day 2


Mike Thurk just sent us this photo from the Eiger Trail. He and his group embarked on a nine-day trek across the Berner Oberland region of central Switzerland. This is a glimpse of Day 2, the stage from the glitzy resort town of Gstaad to the tranquil farming village of Lenk.

Notice the strange limestone formations in the foreground. There's a place on the Trutlisbergpass, the mid point of our hike, where the limestone has been hollowed and carved by the dissolving action of water and CO2. Geologists refer to this dramatic environment as karst topography and the result, though you can't see it in the photo, is a dramatic display of whirlpool-shaped sinkholes, gnarly outcroppings, vertical shafts and more. I've often wondered what the subterranean network looks like. Karst ecosystems usually contain mysterious worlds of serpentine caves, disappearing streams and gnome-sized tunnels.

This convoluted landscape gradually gives way to the high peaks of the Berner Oberland. The benefit of hiking from west to east in this region is that the first few days offer a nice warm up before the trail turns skyward toward the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau peaks.