Loved this converted bus which we saw as we passed the campground

On Monday after a superb cycle – 

  • across to Iserables, 
  • down down down to the valley floor, 
  • quick 20km along the Rhone and back (after the essential coffee)
  • ice cream
  • chair lift back up to Iserables where we watched people below harvesting the grapes and thought about hiking up the old footpath
  • cycle back up the hill to home

 Mike and I chatted about where we would go for our next bike tour and when. Totally spur of the moment  as we had a good weather window ahead followed next week by a much more unsettled forecast we decided to arrange something for later in the week  Talk about impulsive. So here we are on Wednesday at the start of our tour.

This time we decided to cycle the whole of the Furka Pass rather than getting the bus to Gletsch. Then we will make our way to Andermatt then Schwyz (near Lake Luzern) where we will base ourselves for a couple of days before heading back courtesy of the Swiss train service. Our first day was quite short only 200m up to Rhonequelle about 3km in distance. We would have liked to get to Gletsch but although there were rooms available in the one hotel in town no tables for dinner! So we agreed knocking off 200m of the climb was better than nothing. Very glad too as the hotel is charming, our room very comfortable.

As a gentle warm-up we decided to go for a 20km ride in the valley which was lovely, have our picnic by a pretty shrine before collecting our paniers from the car which we parked (for free) by the railway station before heading up the Furka Pass roadl. Had a bit of a panic as the cleat on my shoe had worked loose but Mike sorted it in no time. The church in Oberwald (see below) marks the start of our climb as this is where we caught the bus from a couple of weeks back. Bikes felt much heavier, and I did work up a bit of a glow but the ride up to our hotel was no problem and we came upon it quicker than expected.

Glad I speak some French as the owners speak either German or Portuguese  with minimal French. Some confusion at check in as I think they thought we wanted Room 16 rather than we had checked in for the 16th! But we got checked in and have stored our bikes in the shed and reserved a table for dinner. See below for a video of our ride up to our hotel.

As a postcript

  • Excellent meal of wild venison stew 
  • This is a time when the harvest and coming of Autumn is celebrated. Saw cows being driven down the road in Gina. Beautifully decorated with headdress of wild flowers. Great to see.
  • Amazing to think that this small river that we followed the course of , turns into such a large river downstream – the majestic Rhone.
  • Also surprised to see how ‘small’ in relative terms the source of the Rhone has become – a worry for future generations

Link to detailed route page and map click on route title

Oberwald to Rhonequelle

  • Distance 23.00 km
  • Time 1 h 36 min
  • Speed 4.0 km/h
  • Min altitude 1340 m
  • Peak 1572 m
  • Climb 353 m
  • Descent 141 m
September 26, 2020 1:35 pm