editor ’s note
The wonderful woman who’s long been my wife has had to tolerate several of my peculiarities over the years, just one of which is an inability to cope with heights. Sharmila realised this in our early days of dating, when we spotted that some oiks had thrown a pet rabbit on the roof of her flat: I headed up a ladder in a display of false bravado before realising that my balance had so disappeared, I needed her to rescue both me and Thumper. So it is with a nervous wince that I’ll now warn/advise of what’s in the pages of this issue. Alexander Howard, the managing editor of our American edition and writer of our Colorado Great Escape (p83), pushed his own boundaries in a vertical direction by tackling a via ferrata near the town of Telluride. As you’ll learn in his feature, the views from this route of steel rungs knocked into a vast cliffside are wondrous, yet the feeling while gripping through sweaty palms ‘is one of pure terror’. Expect scant relief from high-altitude antics as you leaf onwards to our selection of Europe’s best rail journeys (p94): trains ranging from old shunters to luxury expresses venture between the Picos de Europa in Spain, the French Pyrenees, the Swiss Alps and the lofty icescapes of Norway.