A Swiss Alpine Adventure – Part 3

The next morning we woke up to a moderate snowfall outside. The mountains had disappeared overnight. We cleared the snow off the car and then drove to Rinerhorn, a mountain for skiing and sledging that was a 20-minute drive outside of Davos.

We found the sled shop where you can rent toboggans for 13 Swiss francs ($15). These were solid wooden sleds with a woven blue mesh fabric for the seat and metal slats on the runners below. You had to shift your body and press the runners inward with your leg to turn right or left.

We bought a half-day lift ticket and boarded the enclosed gondola that fit all four of us and our sleds too. After the 15-minute ride, we disembarked and prepared to sled down from Jatzmeder at a height of 2,053m (6,735 ft). Most people had helmets, and nearly everyone wore ski masks. We had neither.

The sled run had many hairpin turns (even a tunnel at one point) and several exceptionally bumpy sections too. The faster I sledded, the more the snow pelted my face until I was nearly blinded. I almost closed my eyes a few times, but decided I didn’t want to go flying into a tree or fellow sledder.

After we made it to the bottom, we took a brief rest. All our faces had turned bright red. Sarah and I decided we had to buy a ski mask, but Mark and Rache decided to opt out.

The second run was much better. Even though the snow still stung my face, I could see where I was going, which made the run much less harrowing. For the third run, we decided to double up on the sleds. Sarah and I were one team, and Mark and Rache were the other team.

I quickly discovered the doubles sleds were meant for a child and his parent. I had the reins up front, and Sarah had the back. Whenever we started moving rapidly, I inevitably got pushed forward until I was bouncing up and down on a thin wooden slat. It was not the most comfortable ride.

Mark and Rache had other issues. They lost control of their sled, which then bonked Rache in the back of her head. She also lost one of her gloves. After that, they were done with sledging and went to defrost inside a restaurant.

Sarah and I switched back to single sleds and sledged down the route two more times. The first time went smoothly with few sledders on the route. The second time a large group of sledders were ahead of us, and many were moving slowly. I nearly ran into several of them.

At the halfway point, I waited for Sarah. The large group passed me by, and still I waited. Finally she reappeared. Apparently she had lost her sled and had to run down the trail to retrieve it. Fortunately it hadn’t slid off the trail.

We finished the last few stomach-churning, bone-jolting turns and made it to the end. It was 3pm, and we were famished. We returned our sleds, and I picked up a doner wrap on the way back to Davos.

That night we went to Allod Park for a fondue feast. We ordered cheese fondue, chinoisie fondue, and schnitzel (breaded pork). There was plenty of food to dip into the fondues, anything from meat (pork, turkey, beef) to fruit (pineapple, pear) and even french fries. After dipping it into the fondue, we had four sauces to choose from: mustard, garlic, cocktail, and tartar. It was a satisfying meal.

After dinner, Sarah wanted to check out a cafe downtown, but it had already closed. So we went back to the hotel and per usual, engaged in our evening ritual of playing Monopoly Deal. The days had gone by too fast. Tomorrow we would head back to Germany.

This entry was posted in Travel.

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