3rd Igorot Cordillera BIMAAK Europe (ICBE) Consultation
5-8 May 2005
by Oskar Meyer
Day trip to the Aare Gorge
Our comfortable coach picked us up right on time from the Friedegg Hotel. After everyone had found their seats and put away their packed lunch boxes our driver could turn the ignition Key and our journey started.
We drove along the left side of the lake towards Interlaken passing through beautiful villages on the way. As we were lucky with the weather we could enjoy the wonderful view of the Lake of Thun surrounded by beautiful mountains. Our first stop was a short one to the spectacular view point "Luegibrüggli" situated just below the "Beatenberg". From here we could see Interlaken and the three world-famous mountains: The Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. Everyone took this ideal opportunity to take photographs of this well known picture postcard theme. Even though the sun was shining it was quite cool so we were all very grateful to get back into our warm coach. We then drove along the new motorway, opened in 1988, which runs alongside the left bank of the Lake of Brienz. We paused only for a short while to take photographs at the motorway picnic area "Iseltwald". As we travelled on through the 3,300 metre long Giessbach tunnel l wondered how many of us realized that the famous Giessbach waterfall was thundering over us. Not long after we arrived in Meiringen and parked in the car-park at the entrance to the Aare Gorge which was our destination. Even this entrance was breathtaking. It makes one realize how insignificant human beings are when we see this remarkable landscape that nature has created during the past 20 million years. From this point on raincoats were required and everyone appreciated any water resistant clothing that they had brought with them, especially äs in the galleries the water dripped on us constantly from above. This didn't spoil our enthusiasm in any way because after each bend we were rewarded with a new and fascinating sight. Over thousands of years the River Aare had worn a path (200 metres deep and 1,400 metres in length) through the rocks. After this visit we were able to warm ourselves up again in the nearby restaurant until we were all requested to once again take our seats in the coach. On our return journey we drove along the right side of the lake passing Brienz and Oberried until we arrived in Interlaken where we could do some shopping. Small groups quickly formed and everyone set off to look around the town. Unfortunately now, due to a change in the weather, it had started to rain and had become quite cool. So once again we were all very glad to be able to board our coach which was waiting for us at 3 o'clock near the Station. It didn't take long before we arrived back in Aeschi but before we left the bus our driver took us to another view point at the Alpenblick Hotelhere, due to the bad weather, which had set in, we couldn't see very far. And so, soon after we arrived safely back at our hotel.
l would like to take this opportunity to thank 3rdIGOROT Cordillera Europe for being able to join them on this tour. l will never forget this.
l would also like to thank Teofila Hofer for inviting me and making this weekend aweekend to remember.
Special thanks go to Lolit and Jürg Hafner for organizing the trip. It was really well done, especially Jürg who gave us special information and explanations during thetrip."
We are also grateful to our driver for our accident free drive along picturesque roads.
Alongside the workshops Jürg Hafner organized special day trips for guests.
Because of this, a small group had the possibility to visit the "Trümmelbachfälle" or Trummelbach Falls, near Lauterbrunnen on Friday morning. This fantastic nature spectacle will stay imprinted in our minds.
In the afternoon, shortly after lunch we set off for the planned trip to the "Blausee". After only a half an hour's journey we arrived at our first stop and then after a ten minute walk we were standing at the edge of the lake.
As we stood looking out over this small romantic lake we could see huge trout swimming and splashing around in the glass clear water. Because it was quite coolwe decided to warm ourselves up with a good cup of coffee in the nearby restaurant. After this we walked around the lake using the well made path. At the bottom of the lake we saw the mysterious and secretive mermaid through the clear, glisteningwater.
For the walk back to the car park we chose a more adventurous path and as we squeezed ourselves between fallen rocks we felt as though we had travelled back into ancient times. It was a wonderful feeling to find this peaceful place only a few hundred meters from our noisy and busy civilization.
After only a few minutes drive we arrived at the construction sight of the newLötschberg tunnel. There couldn't have been a more spectacular change of scenes.First almost untouched nature and second the home of modern machinery and technical equipment, which are helping mankind to make a hole through this huge and imposing mountain. In the future a train will be able to travel the 34 kilometersthrough this tunnel. During their journey l wonder how many travelers will realize what danger the men who work here had faced and what courage they had needed to achieve their aim. We learnt more about the construction work at the tunnel during a very interesting and informative speech presented on site.
Another trip had been planned, a trip to Kandersteg, but as time was running short we decided to set off on the journey back to our hotel where we arrived in time for anenjoyable evening meal.