Bern, Interlocken, Jungfraujoch, Switzerland

Bern from a Bridge
I arrived in Bern, Switzerland two days ago...I think. I spent about a half hour lost on the way to the hostel, my pack has never felt so heavy. Part of the problem was that the entire center of the city was under construction, so any sense I was to make out of the directions didn't even help. So after going to wrong way for that long, I eventually had to buy something to break the money the bank gave me so I could buy a tram ticket and self correct. I eventually figured it all out, and of course it was really easy once I knew the way. Once I dropped my bag I was free to roam, and roam I did for about of 6 hours. It was a Saturday and everything, even the grocery store closed at 5. So I ended up stuck for dinner and pretty much everything else. But I did have a lovely walk around the entire city, ran into the feeding of the bears, which was really sad, and miraculously, found the correct way back to the hostel. Bern was okay, but nothing to write home about. It is a great place to use as a base to see Switzerland because practically everything is within a two hour train ride away.
Not something you see very day. (Random park in Bern)

Yesterday I hopped a train to Interlocken, with zero plan. I had heard great things, and it was only an hour train ride away. I got there and basically had no idea what to do. I ended up going to the "Top of Europe", also known as Junfraujoch. Three train connections and a very expensive train ticket later, I was let off in a maze of caves and tunnels. I made my way outside and found myself smack dab in the middle of the Alps. The sun was shinning, the snow was glistening and you could just walk around amongst these summits. There was a well groomed path so I decided to follow it for a while. It worked out fine, but once I hit a hill, I could really feel the altitude. By the time I reached the end point, about 45 min to an hour later, I was almost in short sleeves. You couldn't take off your sunglasses because it was so bright and I was sure that I was starting to get a sunburn. No wonder the Alps have no snow. The only thing that is really up there are the glaciers and even those have sink holes, and crevasses and creak at any given moment. You are completely at the mercy of the ice. It was concerning, there really wasn't anything to protect anyone if the rest of that ice shelf to the left of me decided to fall off, and based on the cracking, I wasn't convinced it wasn't going to happen while I was up there. With that said, it was a wonderful hike, and I am so glad it is the first thing I did when I got up there. There are no words to describe what it is like to be in a basin that high in the middle of the Alps. I've seen the Austrian and German Alps before, but actually being up there right in the thick of it was something else.

Me, thinking "I can't believe they just let you play out here without any gear." 

What are those two people doing? Are they crazy? Didn't they see all the crevasses on the way up? Brave souls. 

Happy to have made the small hike to the lodge. 

After you get back in from the hike, there are a number of observation areas, and another outdoor platform, but I think the hike was the best. They also had a really interesting "Ice Palace." It was a series of tunnels through a block of ice, or more accurately the glacier. It was pretty cool to go through, and they had carved some sculptures at various points throughout the tunnels. After exhausting all there was to do up there besides scale one of the summits with a set of ice shoes and a pick, I headed down. I had a much better seat on the way down and got spectacular views all the way to the bottom.

Ice palace
Ice Palace


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