Yes, you read that title correctly; we were in the Alps! Every year, Mr. D's parents spend a portion of the month of August in Pontresina, Switzerland. Often, other family members will join them for several days, and this year, we were part of the group. (There were thirteen of us!)
Hiking is a big part of Mr. D's family culture, and Pontresina and the surrounding area is a perfect place to engage in this activity. Bright and early on our first full day, a group of us took a short bus ride to the terminus for this cable car:
The cable car took us to Muottas Muragl (pronounced Muottas Murawl), which, in addition to having a nice restaurant and lodging, is also the trailhead for a number of hikes. First, we took a look at the map:
Muottas Muragl is located where the orange arrow is on the left of the map. We planned to hike to Alp Languard, the blue label on the right. we chose to take the Panoramaweg, which is on fairly level ground, except for a steep downhill and uphill at the beginning of the hike. You can see the downhill portion of the trail on the right in the photo below.
Once we reached the top of this part of the trail, the views were the stars of the show. I believe that the Washington Cascades are some of the most beautiful mountains in the world, but the Alps certainly are a close second. Here are just two of some of the amazing vistas that extend in every direction:
After about two-and-a-half hours of pleasant hiking, we arrived at Alp Languard, where I sat on a bench and ate my sandwich. Isn't this just about the best lunchtime view ever?
Once all of the hikers in our group arrived at Alp Languard, we headed down the mountain on the chairlift, which delivered us to a spot just a few blocks away from our hotel in Pontresina. And once again, we had a spectacular view:
This hike was only the first of six wonderful hikes in the Alps. Stay tuned; the next hike is coming soon.