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  #21  
Old 12.01.2010, 21:02
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

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Please can you advise where would be a good place to visit - for four or five days of hiking - during May?

We are keen hikers (just completed the UK coast to coast) so looking for a nice area to enjoy the best of Switzerland during May when Spring is starting out but ideally avoiding tramping through snow!

Welcome any suggestions.
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Have a look at Ticino (South of the Alps Switzerland) because the weather will be much warmer than Central or North Switzerland.
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  #22  
Old 12.01.2010, 21:12
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

The Engadin could work at this time of the year. Start out in Maloja and hike down the valley towards Scuol. Due to the snow at higher elevations you will have to stay down in the valley. Guarda would be a must see place and a good starting point to visit different parts of the Engadin. Relatives enjoyed Pension Val Tuoi http://www.pensionvaltuoi.ch/ I spent many weeks of free 'holidays' in the Engadin with the Swiss army. May was usually quite nice, with the valley floor turning green and white mountain peaks standing out against the blue sky (I had a lot of time to study the scenery )
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  #23  
Old 13.01.2010, 01:21
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

In mid-May, in an average year, I wouldn't plan on hiking anywhere above 1800 metres in most of the country if you want to avoid snow. As mentioned above, if you head down to Ticino then this may go up by a couple of hundred metres.

It may pay to wait until closer to the time to plan the exact location - by late April we'll know how much snow fell during the winter and so how low you'll need to keep in order to avoid it. At the moment, it's looking pretty good for a lot of snow this year, but that could easily change.

Alternatively, come prepared with some gaiters and go tramping though the snow that you do find - it can be quite fun, and if the sun is beaming down on a warm Spring day then you won't be cold. I'm not recommending anything extreme, I'm just saying that snow shouldn't be avoided if it means not being able to enjoy the remainder of a mostly snow-free hike.
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  #24  
Old 14.01.2010, 16:49
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Thank you all for your replies. After trawling hundreds of sites, reviews and forums, I'm thinking Scuol might be a good base in May for some hiking. Would you agree?

We will be flying into Zurich and travelling down by train.

We're two keen (albeit not the full-on-enviable-hardy-types) female 30-something hikers looking for views, walks and relaxation in a get-away-from-it-all atmosphere in reasonable Spring weather.

Looking at the Locarno area it appears much more expensive and touristy, hence landing on Scuol.

Welcome any thoughts you're willing to give (within reason)!

Thanks in advance.
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  #25  
Old 01.03.2010, 23:26
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

I'd like to join you guys too...if you decide/organize anything...!
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  #26  
Old 06.03.2010, 16:26
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Hi,

I'm going to Ticino at Easter and I'd like to hike out there and enjoy some sceneric views.

Near Lugano, I was thinking of Monte Bré or Monte San Salvatore.

Near Locarno, I've heard about Cardada.

Do you have any tips or recommendations? I am a good walker but I never actually hiked... How long it would take to go up and down?

I might hike on my way up then take a cable car on my way down if possible / necessary

Thanks in advance!
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  #27  
Old 06.03.2010, 18:15
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Never done any of these three but it's a lovely region.

If you cannot find anything in the links on the first couple of posts on this Sticky Thread, you can try Googling Cardada. They have a pretty comprehensive site and if you click on the interactive map you'll find routes with the times for the hikes. Similar for Monte Bré and Monte Salvatore.

Hope you enjoy the trip.
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  #28  
Old 06.03.2010, 19:29
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

hi Ibou, there was a really nice winter hike for Monte Bré in one of the last SAC magazines. We didn't end up doing it, but I'll look it up and post it here when I have time.
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  #29  
Old 09.03.2010, 18:03
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

I'd be interested in hiking trips anytime when it gets warmer.
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  #30  
Old 19.03.2010, 13:49
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

I'd be interested in Spring or Autumn hikes..... don't know Switzerland at all, so would be nice to be in a group.

Basically more like the leisure hiking though... meaning nice weather (no rain, not too hot) around 10k is usually enough for me. Easy routes..
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Old 19.03.2010, 14:54
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

I'll set up a group to hit the trails in a couple of weeks when most of the snow has melted. Keep your eye on this thread. Will post to the EF calendar too. We have some unfinished business with certain peaks in Glarnerland and Haslital.
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  #32  
Old 19.03.2010, 15:11
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Great... wherever that is am a total newbie to Switzerland and have not seen much outside of Zurich. So anywhere outside of Zurich would be cool with me. Thanks in advance for organizing. Really looking forward to some nice scenery..... Zurich is getting a little boring
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  #33  
Old 19.03.2010, 19:28
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

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Basically more like the leisure hiking though... meaning nice weather (no rain, not too hot) around 10k is usually enough for me. Easy routes..
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I'll set up a group to hit the trails in a couple of weeks... We have some unfinished business with certain peaks in Glarnerland and Haslital.
You guys had better make sure you are speaking the same language before you set out together. And I don't mean that you should both be speaking English.
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  #34  
Old 20.03.2010, 01:57
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Thanks. Mom - are you on this forum too now? How've you been? I was meaning to call...
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  #35  
Old 08.04.2010, 02:29
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

After reading this thread, I was hoping someone could give me advice about some longer hiking trips. Some friends and I will be spending a week in Zurich during mid-July and we are looking to do a medium difficulty, 3-4 day hike in the Zurich area. None of us have been to Switzerland before but we are all in good hiking shape. Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!
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  #36  
Old 08.04.2010, 09:48
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

The English Forum is really intended for English speaking people living here, or planning to do so. It is not a Tourist Office, however the Information here can be useful to holiday makers.

This Thread was put together so that folk could search for themselves.

There are really loads of links (many in English) in the posts. If you don't receive any suggestions from EFers which you fancy doing, perhaps something in the Toggenburg Region would suit you. Not far from Zürich and an interesting part of Switzerland not quite so well known to newcomers. (I found this link through the info on the first page of this Thread).

Hope you enjoy your time in this country.
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  #37  
Old 30.05.2010, 15:50
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Grosse Mythen, near Zurich

Here's a trip report for Grosse Mythen (see post #16) it ended up in the cycling thread for historic reasons and can't be moved out by the mods for technical reasons.

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Old 30.05.2010, 15:55
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Thank you so much for your information. They are very valuable to me. I am studying in Lausanne and plan to start to hike around. Is anyone living in Lausanne interested in hiking together at weekend?
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Old 03.06.2010, 18:44
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland

Thank you very much! This is so helpful.
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  #40  
Old 19.06.2010, 22:43
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Re: Hiking in Switzerland (specifically, mountains up to 2500-ers)

The opening post has a lot of useful links, I have benefited a lot from reading them. Being relatively new to this country and this kind of altitudes, but a keen mountain hiker (p.s. I use the terms mountain running and hiking interchangeably), I wanted to post some of the things that I have learned recently to sharpen my own understanding and to invite the experts to share their thoughts, if any.

Specifically, I was motivated to write this in response to this post. It contained many useful hints, but I wanted to add on to some, so here I go:

1. Buy both 1:25000 and 1:50000 maps of the area - the 50,000 has the paths marked in RED and is a lot easier to read.

I agree. But a map is not a substitute for having adequate stamina and foot skills as required by the route (it is obvious, but still)

2) Get an idea of a route you'd like to do. The hiking with full pack calculation reckons on 20min per km and 20min per 150m of vertical climb. I flat run at 12kmh - on 1-in-10 climbs that will drop to 8kmh. Aim for your usual time

3) Either laminate a photocopy of the map route - OR GPS the route - OR either write down - or commit to memory the names of the waypoints.


Spot on! The formula I use is one vertical meter equals 10 horizontal meters of trail, add this to the horizontal distance to estimate the total effective distance of the route. Obviously this is an estimate, and needs to be corrected for slipperiness, roughness etc.

4) Put on your trainers - go running and follow the signs

Or go barefoot, or wear whatever your feet like, and what the weather demands. The websites overemphasize wearing "proper hiking boots", and Salomons (the Nike's cousin when it comes to trail running). I find the lightest waterproof footwear to be the safest and fastest. But if on a particular day I am dressed as a hiker, hiking boots do look much better for the pics for FB, so, to each their own

5. "Be aware of the weather conditions - if you are in the cloud on your own - you are making a mistake (IMHO)"
Excellent point. One year back I may not have related to this point. A few days ago I was hiking up on the Rigi north trail, and I met a German couple in their 60s, just below the summit. What had happened was, the top was in cloud, so although they had barely 50m more to go, seeing the steep path and having no idea how much farther to destination, they got scared and had decided to turn back. Equally tricky because they had originally planned to get down by train, they did not seem to have fresh legs to make the 3 hour descent safely and I am not sure they had adequate food/water either. (on a wet day such as that day, this trail is not easy, so their dilemma was justifiable given the information they had or lacked)

Luckily, because of my fairly precise time measurements, I was able to predict they would need just another 15 mins to safely reach the top, so that's what they did.

My learning: experience in the mountains is not just about age or how many years you have been out on the mountains but also how keenly you learn.

That said, it is not always possible or even desirable to go with a companion, there are times when you want to be the only one on a mountain. The heuristic I use to set my limit when I go alone on a new mountain is like this. Suppose my hiking endurance is 12 hours before the legs begin to feel anything, and 18-24 hours max in a race or nearing my ability, I would plan a hike of not more than 4-6 hours in total i.e. a pre-decided turn back time, giving a wide margin for mistakes and accidents. Plus important to note how many daylight hours are remaining. For bigger adventures I would always be with someone of my level.

5) "Stick to the major paths/trails - and if possible where a bright top."

Interesting, but I'd disagree. I know many people who feel the same way, asking someone on a mountain to not stray from the trails is like telling a person not to penetrate after foreplay has begun. Now this one is a bit of bold claim, read it with common sense, but if I survey my acquaintances about the injuries they have had over the last one year, you'd be surprised to note that most running injuries happened in Zurich and/or local wanderwegs, and not on mountain trails. My son for example, has fallen twice during evening walks at the local tram stop/footpath due to carelessness, but he would be very alert during difficult hikes and is as stable as one can get there. If you are not enjoying the mountains due to some preconceptions, you are missing something (this is, of course, not to say one can't enjoy simply staying on the trails, again, each to their own).

6) Be careful running down hill - I know one guy who is a demon running downhill - but he has had plenty of experience. YOU will be putting a lot of pressure on joints.

Indeed. One obvious solution is to take mechanical transport down. My personal experience has been that descending recklessly wearing snowshoes/thick boots has hurt my joints, refer point 4. Hiking poles can be useful.

7) Enjoy


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