The green side of Switzer­land

Top Swiss sum­mer ex­pe­ri­ences

Australian Geographic Outdoor - - Contents - Words Pat Kin­sella Pho­tos Switzer­land Tourism

As the sun starts to dis­tance it­self from the south­ern states of Aus­tralia and dark evenings edge ever closer, the Swiss Alps are throw­ing back their win­ter doona and emerg­ing with a great green grin, wel­com­ing ac­tive trav­ellers to a world of ver­dant ad­ven­tures.

It seems such a waste, in so many ways, that many out­door-ori­en­tated ex­plor­ers only ven­ture into the em­brace of Switzer­land’s moun­tains when they’re all tucked up un­der a blan­ket of snow.

The coun­try has some of the planet’s pre­mier ski­ing, no doubt about it, but some of the best fun comes when the sun melts the white stuff and the frozen crys­tals turn to cold cas­cades, crash­ing down canyons and beau­ti­fy­ing al­ready stun­ning cy­cling and trekking trails with wa­ter­falls such as Staub­bach­fall and the rum­bling, tum­bling Trüm­mel­bach.

Each spring Switzer­land re­veals its not-so-se­cret bank ac­count of green-sea­son ad­ven­tures – a tidy for­tune spread across some 60,000km of back­coun­try trails. There are myr­iad ways to en­joy this newly hatched won­der­land – in the sad­dle or with a pad­dle, hel­meted and hang­ing from a rope in the fold of a canyon or fly­ing high upon the alpine ther­mals be­neath a blue­bird sky – but all you re­ally need is a pair of boots, maybe a map, and a will­ing­ness to go wan­der­ing about.

Fol­low­ing are some seeds of in­spi­ra­tion to be sown into your di­ary, for in­tended flow­er­ing in the lazy, hazy days of the early sum­mer up in the North­ern Hemi­sphere: plant them in the reach of full sun and sprin­kle with a lit­tle gla-

Pic: Switzer­land Tourism/Alessan­dra Meni­conzi

Au­tumn evening mood on the Susten Pass.

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