20130820-131217

Leysin, Pic Chaussy and the col de la Croix

Freshly returned from the Dolomites I’d got some people in for our local walking program. I think last week had some of the best weather we’ve had all summer, clear and sunny but not too warm for walking up and down hills.

We got some great days out as usual, that’s some of the limestone scenery above Leysin where we got to see some marmottes and chamois with the usual assortment of alpine flowers and birds etc.
20130821-130050
We also paid one of regular visits to a local mountain farm where they make the famous Etivaz Gruyére cheese in the traditional style. From there we went up Pic Chaussy which is always fantastic, this (above) is a view from the top with the Jura in the far distance. It’s another iPhone shot but in panorama mode this time.
20130821-130357
The purple flowers are wolfsbane aconitum which are actually quite poisonous. The other reason this photo (above) is interesting is that you can see where the old lift station was, or rather, you can’t see where it was. A few years back they closed the mountain and blew it up removing the rubble to return the summit to a more natural state. As other stations reach the end of their life this may become a more common practice.

For contrast, here’s three pictures of the old building that was there. It’s not taken from the same spot though but you can see the sort of scale we’re talking about. These were taken back in June 2007. Looking back at those old images I can see the old metal posts lower down that supported nets by the piste have also been removed.

20070624-151506

20070624-160426

20070624-152816

20130821-135154

20130822-105218

We also took a trip over to the col de la Croix, I like this route a lot. Basically we walk along on the south of the ridge to the col de Bretaye before walking on the north side then climbing back over the ridge to the col de la Croix again.

20130822-121455

On the north side (above) you get great views back to Pic Chaussy.

20130822-140620
I can’t help but recall how brilliant this area is for snowshowing in the winter!
20130822-142954