After our short trip to Klosters we did not rest at home after that … or rather I did not get to rest at home after coming home. Instead the next day, we went on another mountain hike … or at least we attempted to do so lah! This time to the mountain that we could see from across the balcony of our very own home! That is right …
Well, the hubby told me that he had always wanted to go up to that mountain to visit a lake that is found in the area behind this mountain range. The lake seems quite beautiful even though it is not very big … at least from the picture that the hubby showed me.
So, the next morning we left for that mountain trip … but not too early lah because after our long hours on the train from Klosters to Davos and then all the way from Davos back to Lausanne, I needed to have a good rest before attempting another hike up the mountain! 🙂
And this time round, we did not take a cable car to go up the mountain. Instead … after taking a short train ride from Lausanne to Territet, we then took a boat across Lake Léman to Saint-Gingolph, which is located at one end of the lake just next to the French border. And from there (374m) … we had intended to hike on foot to the mountain top (2,171m)! We were very ambitious, were we not? … Or rather the hubby was lah! Especially when you consider that it was supposed to take (according to the guidebook) … about 10 hours to hike from Saint-Gingolph on the shore of Lake Léman to the top of Grammont and then go down, passing by Lake Taney (1,408m) to reach Bouveret (387m) on the shore of Lake Léman in order to take the boat back to Ouchy – a walking trip following a kind of half-circle!
Considering what a slow coach I am, it was actually quite unrealistic to think that we could do it in one day … really!! But as a Malay saying goes, “if you have not tried, then you will not know!” So … we tried … and now we knew lah! hehehe … We would have to think of another plan if the hubby still want to visit that lake and get up to Mount Grammont, which is the highest point above Lake Geneva (Rochers-de-Naye, which we visited a few months ago, is just slightly lower and we had to take a train to go up there!)
Anyway … I suppose I do not even have to ask you to make an informed guess as to whether or not we succeeded in getting to that lake or the top of the mountain! 😉 😉
But … it was a lovely walk up even if we did not manage to get all the way to the top and to the lake areas. And … it was even lovelier when we were making our way down towards Bouveret even though it started to rain a little. Along the way, we managed to pick some souvenirs to bring back home … and we really loikeee!!! 🙂
So here are the photos of yet another of our failed trips to see a lake on a mountain (what else is new, huh? But at least we cannot be faulted for lack of trying! hahaha :)) … enjoyssss … PS as usual, you can click on the panoramas to enlarge them or roll over them to obtain background information.
Arriving at the jetty in Territet, a small town just after Montreux … in time to catch the Henry-Dunant to go to Saint-Gingolph, which is just across the lake.
Strangely, everybody seemed to prefer to gather at the back of the boat (far right pic), leaving the front of the boat nearly empty … except for the two of us, who decided that we would rather sit in front than at the back to enjoy a cuppa and have the whole place to ourselves! hehehe…
The other end of Lake Geneva (Lac Léman), just after Villeneuve, as seen from the boat … with the many mountains in the Canton of Valais (also known as Wallis) in the background.
Nearing the shore of the small town of St-Gingolph, which straddles Switzerland and France, on the opposite shoreline of Lake Geneva (from where most of the Swiss towns and cities are to be found).
Arriving in St-Gingolph … which direction to go? Interestingly, I realised only upon seeing this shot taken by the hubby (left pic) that we could have turned left to go to Lake Tanay (which as you can see would take close to 5 hours from St-Gingolph to reach!) … but somehow we ended up turning right instead and head towards Novel (which is on the French side, by the way)!! Hmmmm …
Crossing the bridge to go into the French side (left) from the Swiss side (right)… of St-Gingolph.
And walking uphill heading towards that mountain that you see in the background (on the far left) … wah lau, so high lah! When I first saw where we were going, I did not think I would be able to do it … but for the hubby’s sake, I thought I would at least try!
And leaving the lake shore and (the French part of) St-Gingolph behind us.
Reaching Léman Forest, an adventure camp site, and walking past it, heading into the forest … as we made our way further up.
And then walking through the forest, along the river La Morge.
Along the way we saw a chestnut tree growing near the campsite and a number of hazelnut trees growing in the forest. I decided to pick the two chestnuts (in my palm) that we found there to bring home … but the hazelnuts were, unfortunately, not yet ripe for picking!
From the forested area (on the right of the left picture above) we then got onto a road that would take us to Novel. Interestingly while we were walking on French ground .. just across the green field (that slopes downward) …
… we saw a cluster of houses located on Swiss soil! I suppose we must have been walking quite close along the border while we made our way up to the mountain.
Finally arriving just outside of the French village of Novel. Passing by this house on the fringe of this tiny village somehow reminded me of the times when my family used to drive past houses in Malacca on our way to our grandparents’ place in the village! It really made me miss those times!! I have not been back there for more than 2 years now. 😦
The tiny village of Novel, which sits on a mountain slope …
… with a view of Lake Geneva, the Swiss city of Vevey and the mountains above it in the background on the far horizon (including Rochers de Naye).
Going through the tiny village on our way to Grammont.
Leaving the village of Novel. Apparently, the first of the two lakes we would have passed by (that of Lovenex) lies behind these two peaks (Pointe de Lovenex and Plan du Pré). We carried on for an extra 20 minutes but then decided to call it quits as we would never have made it round those mountains and then climb up the Grammont, then go down to Lake Taney and further down to Bouveret before it got dark (the lake of Lovenex was stated as being 4.5 hours away from this point when we were supposed to be heading to Bouveret by then!).
We are not ashamed to admit that our decision was prompted by the warning notice we had seen only a metre away from where the previous photo was shot, one urging hikers not to undertake any excursion if the weather, their level of fitness, their equipment and the time at their disposal are not all up to the level required to do so safely.
The hubby had noticed on the map a place called ‘Tomb of the Germans’ (Tombeau des Allemands) and had assumed that some fighting must have taken place in the area during World War II. However, he later found out that this name was given to an area visible from Novel where several German-speaking Swiss/foreigners who had hiked to the lake of Lovenex only to find on their way back that they were running short of time to catch the boat to Montreux and had decided to take a short cut by making a descent between the two peaks. Unfortunately, this proved to be a fateful decision as they ended up losing their lives in the attempt. So, better to be safe than sorry lah .. and we were glad to have made the decision to turn back to make our way back to the shore of Lake Geneva! Especially, since it also started to drizzle as we made our descent.
After leaving the French village of Novel, we crossed over to the Swiss side to make our way down to the lake side town of Bouveret, passing through an equally small Swiss village (that of Clarive) on our way.
Along the way, as we made our way down towards Bouveret where we would be catching the boat back to Ouchy, I just could not help but noticed the “extra feature” that I saw on the road and directional signs. As you can see, someone seemed to have placed a pink board in the shape of the raquette shoe in bright pink!! So cute and just like the second pair of raquette shoe that I own (same brand and shape but different colour), I thought … even as it made me wonder the reason for its addition. 🙂 The hubby later told me that this is to indicate a path that people doing raquette can follow in winter, when I mentioned it to him. Ahhh … just what I had suspected. The landscape must be quite different with snow everywhere, I suppose.
Further down the road, we were able to see the beautiful Lake Geneva as we made our way to Bouveret … and so decided to stop at this spot just to enjoy the view for a while.
The hubby checking out the road signs … just to make sure that we are going the correct way … and preferably the shortest, too! 🙂
A pleasant surprise awaited us as we were walking along this stretch of the road …
It seemed that there was quite a number of chestnut trees growing along this stretch. And a number of them had ripened and had dropped to the ground! So … after confirming with the hubby that they were the real chestnuts and not the other variety that looks like chestnut, I started to pick the chestnuts that had fallen to the ground! Well … you would not have expected me to leave without picking some would you? hehehe … 🙂
And in fact, along this particular stretch there were even more chestnut trees, except that there were not many good ones on the ground …
… there were several hazelnut trees there, too, which looked as if the nuts might be ripe enough for picking. So … I got the hubby to pluck some for me lah! hehehe …
And further down the road, we saw that there was an area full of chestnut trees (which unfortunately still were not ripe because I could not find any to pick!) with a fountain as well as an open oven for roasting the chestnuts … plus benches to sit down and enjoy the roasted chestnuts!! Cool … just too bad we were there at the wrong time! Although it certainly made us think of coming back to the area again when the chestnuts have ripened, maybe???? 😉
Near the area above, we got off the main road and turned right to follow a small path into a wooded area, which is a short cut to the lake shore of Bouveret …
… where we also passed some fields and private lands with more chestnut trees growing on these private expanses of land as well as sheep grazing happily on fields that overlook the Lake Geneva. I even got to pick some blackberries along the way here, much to my pleasure. 🙂
But the best part of our walk came next … at least to me, personally lah …
… when we walked past by this residential area in Bouveret that overlooks the Lake Léman. .. with its pleasant surrounding, fantastic lake view and beautiful houses.
I would lurveeee to stay in any of the houses here!!!
Okay, maybe I don’t need a big one like most of them .. a small one would do nicely for me. But … certainly one where I can have a terrace that overlooks the lake like many of them!!! However, since that is not going to happen … so guess I can only dream about it lah!! 😦
Finally, we reached the lake shore in Bouveret and made our way to the jetty. However, since we had to wait another hour for the boat to arrive, we decided to have our dinner in the area …
… and enjoy the view of the lake from there … which is quite different from the view we usually see from home or from Ouchy.
Now … even though we did not succeed in achieving what we had intended to do … I would say that the day was not a total failure lah. We get to see how it had looked like from the opposite side of Lake Léman … and also know now where to go if we want to collect some free chestnuts! 😮
And last but not least …
… got to bring home some free souvenirs!!! hehehe…
PS: Some of the chestnuts were really quite small and have a darker colour (than the ones normally seen in the shop) as these chestnuts were picked from different trees and are therefore of different varieties, I think. But when roasted at home … they all tasted deliciously sweet!!!