Geneva - St. Margrethen September 2009.

The weather forecast for the next week looks promising, so I decide to take the train to Geneva, and start a cycle tour crossing Switzerland diagonally till St. Margrethen (at the Austrian border).
I book by computer an overnight stay in a youth hostel "online booking www.hihostile.com".
At 7 p.m. I arrive in Geneva.
After preparing my bed and store my luggage in the YHA. I made a stroll through the city and along the lake of Geneva.

^Looking back at Geneva

< In the evening a walk along the lake with the illuminated landmark.

Geneva to Gruyère

Monday 07th. September 2009

Kilometres: _________108.67
Altitude: _____________1040
Avg.: ________________16.4
Time: ________________6:37
Weather: Full Day Sunny.

The time is ripe for harvesting fruit, grapes and corn fields.

Castle in Nyon.

Castle in Rolle.

Vegetables as an ornamental plant.

Castles and vineyards, = Welschland

The hostel is located between the lake of Geneva and the central station (Rue Rothschild 30) and here starts my 5 days cycle tour.
The bike trail along the lake is almost completely separated from automobile traffic but sometimes the asphalt road is painted with yellow markings for cyclists. In the village I have to manage to cope with the traffic.
On the right side is the lake and on the left side are grapes, corn fields and apple trees ripe to harvest.
In Lausanne, I leave the Lake Geneva and climb up to the centre of the city.
It is noon and time for a break.
After lunch, I buy something for dinner.
From 375 m. above sea level (Lausanne) up to 800 meter to the plateau at Savigny, the road goes up steadily but not too steep.
Until Gruyère, my stay for tonight, I have 1040 meters on my odometer which shows how undulating this plateau is.

Castle Morges

The village of Morges

Lausanne Cathedral. Construction began in 1150 in Roman style. Inaugurated 1275 in Burgundy, early Gothic style

Panorama at Essertes

View of les Alpettes

Gruyere to Interlaken

Tuesday 08th. September 2009

Kilometer: 84,20 total ---192,87
Tageshöhe:1023 total -----2063
Durchschn.: 16,1
Zeit: --------5:13 total ----11:50
Ganzer Tag Sonne ohne eine Wolke.

A magnificent view from my breakfast table in Brock on county and castle Gruyère

Town and Gruyere Castle

Small lake in Charmey

In Broc, I have a wonderful view over the landscape of Gruyère, with such a beautiful view breakfast tastes better.
Now I cycle to the Jaun pass. My map indicates a slope of 680 but when I arrive on top, my bike computer shows 887 meters. It goes down a few times, that's why the computer display shows 200 metre more. The pass starts at Jaun on, 500 altitude metres over 7 km with a slope of 8 to 12%.
The 9 km descent to Bolting into the Simmental is great. The winding road descends over 650 meters into the Simmental valley.
Unfortunately, Niedersimmental is not suitable for cyclists. I'm totally exposed to the traffic. Only in the last part before Spiez markings for cyclist are drawn on the road.
From Spiez to Interlaken it is much better the bike paths are either separated or marked with stripes on the asphalt road. So it is easier to enjoy the magnificent views of Lake Thun.

In Fang

A splendor of flowers

Looking back at the village of Jaun

Down into Simmental^

Water wheel in Jaun>

Bridge over the river Simme

Such church towers I often see


Interlaken to Brunnen at Lake Lucerne

Wednesday 09th. September 2009

Kilometres: 83.74 ___total 276.61
Altitude: ____649 ___total__2712
Time:______4:42 ___total _16:31
Pure sunshine all day.

Karel from Belgium (Gent) randomly met in Brienz

Still work after the Katasrophe


Direction Brünig


Lake of Lungeren

One of the oldest church towers in central Switzerland (1383). The church was heavily damaged during a storm in 1887 and swept away to some extent. The bell tower was preserved and stands now alone on the meadow.

In Brienz I meet a cyclist from Belgium, who explores Switzerland with his bike. He has done even the Pragelpass from the western side, and yesterday he came across the Furka and Grimsel Pass to Brienz. We enjoyed ourselves with chats at a cup of tea and coffee about various tours and passes we both know.
I come to a construction work where in August 2005 two streams flooded and caused a disaster. 2 people lost their lives and 30 houses were destroyed.
The way up to the Brünnig pass is not frequently used today. First I cycle up a quiet road through Brienzwiler and later join the road from Meiringen. At the moment the road is expanded in the upper part.
On the summit I meet a tour rider whose path is almost the same as mine. Instead of St.Margrethen he will cycle to Constance. My way leads along the Lungerersee, Sarnersee and Alpnachersee to Lake Lucerne.
In Beckenried I take the ferry to Gersau.
Because the weather is so nice, I pitch my tent on the camping in Brunnen at Lake Lucerne.

Between Buochs and Beckenried


This photo is taken from the bridge in Stansstadt

Waiting for the ferry in Beckenried

Vierwaldstättersee at Beckenried

Direction Brunnen

Brunnen to Weesen at the Walensee

View from Schwyz on Brunnen at Lake Lucerne

Thursday 10th September 2009

Kilometres: 78.32 total 354.93
Altitude.:____985 total__3697
Time:______4:40 total__21:11
Sunny, a bit cloudy in the evening.


On the way to the Sattelpass overlooking the Lauerzersee

Central Switzerland is Catholic

<The cables car rotate

A lot of traffic on the first few miles to Schwyz, but the next 8 kilometres the road with a 3% ascent to Sattel, is very well developed and little traffic.
In Sattel is the world's first rotating cable car. With such nice weather, people are lining up like on a winter day with powdery snow.
I cycle through Rothenthurm and remember a long dispute between environmental organizations and the military. There, the unique and highly delicate upland moors should be used as a military training area. At the end of the discussion the environmental organizations won you weren't expecting that, were you?
In Biberbrugg I turn right to Einsiedeln. At the Sihlsee I cross an almost 2 kilometres long bridge to the other side of the lake.
A little further I start with the Sattelegg pass, a small pass with a height difference of only 300 metres, but an 8 to 10% slope.
After a break at the summit I put on my wind-breaker. It is a fantastic descent with several switchbacks, 750 altitude meters down into the Wägital.
On my way I visit a family in Tuggen. I know them since 35 years, and our friendship never got lost. By chance they have visitors and coffee and cake is already on the table.
In Weesen I find the campground marked on my map. It is located at the lake in a forest.
There is already a tent, two bikes and children's toys. I get the key to the sanitary fittings at the restaurant. When I come back from the shower there is another cyclist couple. Now we are three of them.

Luckily, this delicate upland moor is not a military training area

End of the "Sihlsee"

At this place, "Dark Forest" the monk and hermit Meinrad was killed in 861 by robbers and at this place the monastery of Einsiedeln was built in 934.

Einsiedeln has a ski jump which you can use also in the summer

This photo is taken from the bridge over the Sihl

<Many Passes are indicated by distance and altitude

Many cyclists make a Stop

Descent into the Wägital

Camping in Weesen

Weesen - St.Margrethen

Friday 11th. September 2009

Kilometres: 100.69 total 455.62
Altitude: _____331 total _4028
Avg.: ________19
Time:_______5:18 total _26:30
Variably Cloudy.

Along the Walensee

Castle Sargans

Castle Werdenberg Buochs

From Weesen to Quarten is a bicycle trail which leads up along the lake with a couple of long tunnels. While I take a picture a biking globe-trotter overtakes me. Later I catch up with him on a slope, because he pushes his bike up the mountain. He tells me about his adventures, where he has been, e.g. also at the North Cape. In Canada, he got pneumonia from which he has still not completely recovered, that is why he has trouble cycling up the mountain.
The Russian cyclist is now looking for a job in Switzerland, to get money and continue his trip.
In Sargans I take a longer break, there is still 60 kilometres to go down the Rhine Valley to St.Margrethen and the wind is getting stronger, unfortunately from the wrong direction.
I am at the station of St.Margrethen at 3 p.m. In 8 minutes, my train leaves for Bremgarten.
With maximum hours of sunshine, a beautiful autumn week is about to come to an end.

Centre of Altstätten

Crossing Switzerland has endet