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Swift-S1-FES, 3.20m

Allgemeines
Art: Segelkunst-und Thermikflug
Masstab: 1:4, Scalemodell
Ausführung:  Voll-Gfk/Cfk, HS-Version
Fabrikat:  xmodels.it
Bezug: leomotion.com /direkt

Technik
Spannweite: 3.20m
Länge: 1.74m
Abfluggewicht: 6,736kg (inkl. Akkus!)
Schwerpunkt: 100mm (kein Trimmblei!)
Sonstiges: Flitschenhaken
Spezielles: IDS-Anlenkungen (Tragflächen)
Fes-Antrieb (Getriebe): LEO 4031-2550, (6;7:1)
Klapppropeller: RFM-Cfk17x13″, weiss
Spinner: RFM-Cfk-Scale, 45mm/6mm
BEC-Regler: Hobbywing Platinum Pro 120A
Kabinenhaube: Klappbar wie beim Original!

Radio/RC FrSky
Empfänger/RX: FrSky-X 8 R
Vario: FrSky Variometer
Akku Antrieb: 6S-Lipo, 4’500mAh/22,2V/40C
Stützakku RX:  OptiPower Ultra-Guard 430

Servos Futaba/MKS HV
Höhenruder: MKS HV747, 13.8kg.cm/7,2V
Seitenruder: MKS HV747, 13.8kg.cm/7,2V
Querruder: S3173SVi, 4,3kg.cm/7,4V
Wölbklappen: BLS173SVi, 7,6kg.cm/7,4V

Leergewichte:
Rumpf/Haube/Seite: 1’720g
Cfk-Steckung:    286g
Höhenleitwerk:    218g
Tragflächen: 2’540g
Total 4’764g

Kennung SUI-27643
CMS Modellflugzeuge

Griesalp to Hohtürli

Via Alpina, Section 13 – Part 1

Griesalp (1408m)  – Bundalp (1840m) – Hohtürli (2774m) – Blümlisalphütte (2840m) – Oeschinensee (1593m) – Kandersteg (1176m)
16km, 1550m up  and 1750m down

Today is one of the hardest hikes on the Via Alpina route, almost 1,400m up to the highest pass of this trail (2,774m). The Via Alpina has a total of 14 passes.

Unlike yesterday, today the sun is out and the blue sky smiles at us.

After a hearty breakfast, we’re ready for the big day!
Leaving behind our beautiful, cozy hotel, we went down to the village center. Not that we wanted to go down but the route does not give us a choice. The center is nothing more than a bus stop and a couple of hotels. Like us a bit earlier, many hikers were getting ready for the next stretch.

Crossing the river, the climb started on the other side of the valley. The first stretch was through the woods. Several hikers were on the trail as well.  A bit later, we walked through pasture land and passed a couple of farmhouses to finally reach a restaurant at Bundalp (1,840m). It looked enticing, but too early to have a break, we skipped it and continued.

At this time I told Caroline that we had gone up roughly one third of today’s ascent, only another 1,000 m up to go. Not sure whether it was encouraging or discouraging…

A little bit later, the imposing Blümlisalp Massif and the Blümlisalphütte appeared on the hoirzon, today’s highest point as well as our lunch destination. The hut seemed to be sitting on the boulder, majestic, far and away.

It was very sunny and it seemed a popular route, with a lot of hikers on the trail.

The steep slope was criss-crossed with many paths.

We looked up to the hut on the boulder under the blue sky often. What a fantastic sight! The more altitude we gained, the more of yesterday’s path we could see on the opposite side of the valley, even the Sefinenfurgge pass, yesterday’s highest point .
I always love seeing the  travelled route and pass of the day before. It helps me to understand the exact geography of the area. It is like creating your own 3D map in your head.

The rugged Gespaltenhorn (3426m) and Gespaltenhornhütte at the foot were also visible.  The dutch couple we met the day before went into this direction. That route  seemed not funny….

After we managed some narrow path on the ridge, the famous steps to Hohtürli appeared. The stairs seemed to wind up endlessly.

One step after the other. Luckily no one was coming down and we did not need to cross other hikers on those narrow steps.

The last stretch on the stairs looked vertical! The sweat was streaming down on my face while I was concentrating on the steps ahead of me,  not looking at the steep slope going down several hundreds meters.

After some hundreds of steps, I reached at the top of staircase and Caroline came up just after me and smiled, when seeing the hut in front of us. Done.

Finally at the Hohtürli (= the high small door), 2774m. We made it!

Via Alpina Rotstockhütte to Griesalp

Via Alpina Section 12 – Part 2

Rotstockhütte (2019m) -> Sefinenfurgge (2612m) -> Griesalp (1408m)
10km, 600m up and 1500m down

After a night at the mountain hut, we woke up early. Every time someone went to the out-of-the house toilet at night, the wooden floor squeaked and the noise prevented us from a good night of sleep… We were nevertheless warm inside the hut and Caroline told me that the sky at night was amazingly starry!

Despite the lack of sleep, I was in the fresh morning air and happy to be in this fantastic alpine environment.

The breakfast tactics were simple. Absorb as much energy as possible in form of bread, cheese and hot chocolate to happily keep walking until our final destination Griesalp. There isn’t any restaurant on the way.

Today’s program: 4.5 hour of hiking including a serious 1,200m downhill stretch.

Leaving the hut behind, many other hikers were heading our way. A Dutch couple, three American men and two Swiss women steadily were climbing up the steep path. We could see the Schilthorn (2970m), famous for 007’s “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”. From afar, the Schilthorn seemed to fall off from its own edge.

Looking back in the direction of our overnight hut, the northface of the Eiger with the Eigergletscher Station showed off its glory. Last year, I was standing at that station, admiring the Eiger peak.

On the way we stopped many times to rest and were delighted when Caroline spotted a steinbock high up on the slope!

The impressive peak in front of our hut, which we believed to be called “Rotstock” (in fact it was called just “Horn”) turned out to be sphinx-like from the other side.

From here, the uphill got quite strenuous. The  green meadow changed to  the slippery scree-covered steep slope.  Just up and up!

We finally reached the Sefinenfurgge Pass (2612m), which was a very narrow pass.  We were rewarded with a sweeping view of the Kiental Valley.  It was all of a sudden getting cloudy and the cold wind was blowing over the pass.  After enjoying the view for a short time and saying a goodbye to the Eiger and Jungfrau, we tightened our shoe laces to prepare for the long descent.

And not only was it a long descent but a super steep one with 45-degree steps!  It looked like going down to the hell….

Nevertheless, I was grateful to those who took pains to make these wooden steps. Without them, we would have slid down this unfriendly scree slope…

Managing downhill steps, we jig-zagged on the moon-like surface. Other peaks and glaciers started appearing on our left side. This rugged landscape was forlorn and awe-inspiring.

After a while, the terrain changed to a more greener and friendlier surface.  As Caroline is an Ikebana master and familiar with flowers, I had a pleasant little lecture on alpine flora.

Caroline was getting tired with going down 1200m, which is quite normal. So the moment we found a good-size rock to sit on,  we made a stop,  looking at the other side of the mountains and contemplating which pass we are going through the next day.

We were both happy to arrive in the early afternoon in Griesalp, a quaint hamlet, and to put our feet up at our old, beautiful hotel.  It’s such a luxury to have a good hot shower and our own room for two, instead of no shower and sleeping in a room with 15 other hikers…..

Sitting at the terrace comfortably and having tea, we watched many hikers coming down. They as well seemed exhausted after a serious day of decent…

At dinner we shared a table with a solo hiker from Fribourg, Gido. Caroline coincidentally went to high school near his school and as it is often the case, we had a very enjoyable talk with a fellow hiker.

VIA ALPINA, Grütschalp to Rotstockhütte

Via Alpina, Section 12 – Part 1

Grütschalp (1520m) -> Mürren (1638m) -> Bryndli (2133m)  to Rotstockhütte (2019m), 10 km, 600m up

Back to the Via Alpina Route!

Last October I finished roughly half of the route (the Via Alpina is a trail of a total of 370km) and have long wanted to come back and pick up from where I left.
The image of shining Eiger, Mönch and Jüngfrau have been lingering in my head since then and was excited to come back to this magnificent region.

Today I have a new hiking companion for next three days, Caroline, who is in the same calligraphy class and as well an Ikebana teacher.

Arriving from Zurich by train, we wandered around the small, but pretty village of Lauterbrunnen, teeming with Asian, American, European and Middle-Eastern tourists.  The narrow valley was sandwiched with imposing mountains and it already gave me an Alpin feeling!

We saw an impressive, tall waterfall from the train station so we decided to go and see it – the 300m-high Staubach Falls.

We hiked up to see the waterfall,  walked through the tunnel and kind of watched it from behind. But we got out of it completely wet and had a good laugh looking at each other.

Then we took a cable car from Lauterbrunnen (802m) to Grütschalp (1520m)  to gain 700m in altitude,  to start for a relatively easy hike for the first day.

The trail from Grütchalp to Mürren (4.3km) is easy-going and scenic with fantastic views of Mönch and Jungfrau mountains (unfortunately Eiger was hidden behind the clouds).  On the way we stopped for a nice lunch break at the restaurant terrace with a great view for the Bernese Oberland mountains.
The sun was shining and, surrounded by awesome mountains, I was all smiles having lunch with a good friend!

After going through busy Mürren lined with restaurants and hotels and a short walk on the asphalt road, a real hiking path started, leading into the verdant forest.
The Lauterbrunnen valley was opening up under us and after passing a charming and lonesome farm, all of a sudden it became a very steep ascent leading around the rocky mountain of Bryndli. The valley was 1000m below us, I tried hard not to look down and just concentrate on my steps…

After this challenging climb, to our relief, the trail became even and relatively easy.  As we went slow during the first half, the afternoon had almost gone while the hut still seemed rather far away!  At this altitude the air cools down quite a bit in the evening, so we rushed into the hut as we finally got there.

Caroline and I were happy to arrive at the hut at around 5:30 pm. Finally what we thought to become an easy-going walk, turned into a rather serious hike.

At dinner we shared our table with three friendly Americans from New York and Washington. One studied Zen and Japanese so we had an interesting talk over a typical Swiss dish of Alper Macaroni with apple mousse…

Overnight at a temple, Jimeiin, in Koyasan

We stayed one night at one of the temples in Koyasan. Jimeiin is a quiet, serene temple with beautiful gardens.

We were welcomed by young monks and escorted to our traditional Japanese room, which overlooked two different, wonderful gardens. For dinner, a tasty tofu and vegetarian meal was served by monks and next morning we were also invited to participate in morning prayers at 6:30 am. We don’t need to be a Buddhist or to understand exactly what is happening. We can sit there quietly and simply appreciate that mystic and mysterious experience.

Kumano Kodō III

Kumano Kodō, from Hashinmon Oji to Hongu, stop at Yunomine Onsen.

We have been walking parts of the Kumano Kodo for two days and today is 3rd day.

Yunomine Onsen is a quaint World Cultural Heritage onsen village with hot water steaming down the river. Instead of soaking in a over-50 degree bath (obviously you need to add water), we put our feet in the downstream (still over 40 degrees), drinking beer and eating snacks. A simple, nice and relaxing experience.

Kumano Kodo II

Kumano Kodo, from Hashinmon Oji to Kumano Hongu,
7km, 2h

Starting at 3 pm (due to some car problem), which is late and the over-careful tourism office recommend that we take a torch light, we walked through a very beautiful countryside dotted with hamlet and occasional tea plantation.  We greeted some villagers and passed a couple of self-service stands which sell plum pickles and local tea.

We survived even without a torch light.

Kumano Hongū Taisha

The most beautiful Shinto shrine I have even seen. After walking on the Kumano Kodo for two hours, we arrived at the main shrine past 5 pm.  It was after the shrine offices are closed so there was almost no one in the temple compound.  We sat awed by mystic, majestic shrine with beautifully thatched-roof.

We also visited the biggest Torii (the shrine gate) in Japan. It was gigantic!