High on a hill was a lonely goatherd…

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Quinn and I had an epic adventure today hiking along the largest glacier in Europe — the Aletschgletscher.  We took the train to Fiesch in the morning and hopped on a cable car up to Fiescheralp (elevation 2212 m). From there, we walked around the Eggishorn mountain — and partially through it. A 1 km tunnel cut through the mountain, for those not so eager to go up and over. At the other side of the tunnel was a little restaurant where, after watching a goat herd go by (with bells on their necks!), we ate some delicious pastries.

After our pit stop, we detoured from our planned hike and climbed down a shallow cliff to go to the edge of the glacier. From above, the glacier was primarily white and brown (from all the dirt and rock that it was bringing with it). From the side, we were able to climb into these caverns of brilliant blue that was unlike anything I had ever seen. We took pictures, but those will have to wait until I have a faster Internet connection… and besides, I don’t think they will do it justice.

Also, I slipped and fell and hurt my shoulder in that area. But enough about that — I only have minor problems lifting things today.

After climbing back up to the main trail, we hiked over to Roti Chumme and for about three kilometers, we were walking along a cliffside over looking the glacier. The glacier was about a kilometer wide, and across it we could see the Aletschhorn, the tallest mountain in the area. Clouds started to form near it’s peak, and eventually we started hearing low rolls of thunder from the other side of the glacier. The storm was still a few kilometers away from us, but watching it roll in was awe inspiring. Twice a brilliant flash of light reached us (and once I was even able to see the bolt of lightning). Shortly after each of these flashes, thunder rolled through the entire glacier valley and reverberated through the mountains. It was like no sound I’ve ever heard before. Quinn took a video of the second one, but again, I don’t think it will do justice to the rumble of the earth.

Eventually we noticed that the storm was heading over the glacier right towards us, so we picked up the pace to try and catch the last ski gondola from Moosfluh down to Riederalp. Somewhere in this part of the hike, we were coming over a hill and suddenly I heard Quinn say “Uh oh, we have company.” I looked, and there was a herd of cows blocking our path. We navigated through them, us looking at them, them looking at us with bells around their necks while they chewed on the grass. One of the bulls definitely looked annoyed at us.

We made it to Moosfluh just in time to get out of the rain and caught the last gondola down. But we weren’t quite done as we had to walk from there to the Mitte lift and take that down to Mörel where we took the train back to Brig.

Oh, and I fainted, collapsed, and briefly lost consciousness on that last lift down to Mörel, but I’m totally fine now.

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