Climbing over Bettmersee to See Better

After getting to Fiesch and realising the cable car was shut, we hastily took a train and cable car to a nearby village, and found a gem of a village and absolute beauty to follow.

Bettmersee 1

Our hike started in the cute village of Bettmeralp which boasts a car-free environment and stunning views over snowcapped mountains.

Bettmeralp 1

Bettmeralp 2

We didn’t hang around in the village, but instead made a beeline for the lake, Bettmersee, which would be our path into the mountains.

It was really hot and I kept applying sunscreen for fear of the typical Englishman getting burnt in the midday sun. So I was shocked to find that Bettmersee was frozen over (Main photo), and worse, surrounded by thick snow.

It was fairly daunting to see the mountain that we’d have to climb. Or rather, not a mountain but a massive wall of rock. But we knew the Glacier was on the other side so we persevered.

Bettmersee plus Mountain

The hike started off very difficult as I kept sinking in the snow, and unlike when I go skiing, I was not prepared for this. I was wearing lightweight trainers, which promptly got soaked through, and I was terrified that I’d put my foot in a crevasse or something. It seems unlikely thinking about it now (I was on or near a footpath around a lake for gods sake!) but I was so scared at the time that I cried! My BF, who had gone first, was utterly useless, and kept shouting to carry on and walk to him. I was frozen in fear half way across the snow field. Anyway, I eventually got through.

We climbed above Bettmersee, finding the most gradual, realistic route we could find to contour the mountain.

Bettmersee 2

However when we got above the snowline onto clear paths and rocks, it got much better. Most of the time when we go for a walk, I shuffle along looking for an ice cream van and asking what we’re having for dinner later. But this time, I was super motivated. I knew there was a glacier on the other side of the mountain and I was determined I was going to see it.

Bettmersee 3

After about 4 hours, we started to hit more deep snow and a really steep bit. I decided it was getting a bit dangerous as we weren’t equipped for snow. I started to assess our supplies (1 fast diminishing water bottle each and 1 bounty bar each) and decided this was probably a stupid idea.

And I should say, I’ve done proper walking before, so I know about emergency rations, bivvi bags, etc.  But obviously when we planned for this trip, we were planning to take a cable car and eat in the mountain restaurant!

So with a heavy heart we decided it would be most sensible to stop and go back. We were both gutted that we missed the glacier, but we walked for 6 hours in total that day, and we went as far as we could safely go. We tried our best 😦  And at least we saw some beautiful scenery on the way.

Next blog: Brig, Switzerland

Previous blog: Fiesch, Switzerland

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