Last night at dinner we met a couple from Switzerland who were vacationing in Pontresina. They told us that we should go to St. Moritz by bus and take the gondolas up to Piz Nair. They were so nice. The woman showed us photos of the rocks and the man went to the front desk to get maps for us.
Staying at the Schweizerhof in Pontresina has a great advantage. They provide a pass for all of the transportation in the Upper Engadin Region to anybody staying 2 or more nights. The couple told us that without the pass. the gondola rides up to Piz Noir would have cost 70 CHF each.
After breakfast at the hotel we headed walked to the bus stop to go to St. Moritz. By the way, Shirley is really good at remembering directions and where we are supposed to be going. It makes traveling really much easier. The bus was really crowded with people, but most of them got off at different stops. We got off at Schulhousplatz.
To get all the way to Piz Noir where the elevation was 3057 meters, we had to ride 3 different gondolas. The sign on one of them said it would hold 200 + 1 persons. I thought that was strange.
The weather this morning was overcast. That was good for hiking (kept cooler) but not so great for photographs although I tried. The mountains were very barren.
We stopped a few times on the way down and picked up a few small rocks to take home. I took some photos of them but am disappointed because the photos just don’t capture the colors or the beauty of the rocks.
We were trying to follow the signs down to Corviglia (one of the gondola stops) but there were not many signs. We got down pretty close to this small pond of water.
Then we realized that we had hiked below where we wanted to be and had to hike back up for a while. We were looking at our map and trying to find our way when a guy working on one of the lifts came out to help us That was lucky or we would have hiked up an extra 100 meters or so longer than we needed to hike.
Anyway we were glad to do some hiking going up since yesterday we had hiked mostly downwards all day. Shirley hiked above me for a bit so I could try to zoom in on a photo of her to show the switch back path through the rocks but they are really difficult to see.
There were two people walking down almost to where we started walking back up the hill so I took a photo to try to show the distance. They are so small over by the first pile of white rocks on the right.
Shirley took a couple of photos of me – sometimes taking my own photos.
I am totally amazed at the bike riders. I can’t even imagine riding a bike over the rocks that were covering the walking paths. We had to be careful not to slip or stumble and the danger of hitting a rock on the bike seems very high.
They were speeding by us on the easier parts of the path when I was able to photograph them, but there were some sections that were really scary.
Of course I had to photograph the lone daisy and the beautiful purple flower.
We finally made it down to the Corviglia gondola which is at 2846 meters and asked a woman to take our photo (although we had walked down about 700 or 800 meters including having to walk back up again) so we weren’t still at the top of the world. Shirley took another one of me at the next gondola stop.
Shirley took a photo of St. Moritz from the gondola as we were going down.
We walked around St. Moritz for a while and had ice-cream cones. Shirley had chocolate but I had a double with a scoop of chocolate and a scoop of raspberry. It was delicious.
After Shirley tasted my raspberry, she decided to get another cone with raspberry.
Then we stopped at the tourist office. He told us to go see the Leaning Tower of St. Moritz.
This is the oldest building in St. Moritz.
We also stopped at a small car show with the Ferrari that Shirley decided she wanted for her next car.
There were several other really cool cars.
I stopped at an eyeglass place to see if they had any really round glass frames. I actually found some and purchased them to save for the next time I need new lenses. What fun.
Shirley took this photo of the bobsled runner.
We took the longest escalator in Switzerland down to the lake and watched the sailboats and people for a bit while before taking the bus back to Pontresina.
This cool, colorful sculpture is right outside of our hotel.
Tonight we went out for Pizza. We were surprised that we needed a reservation on a Monday night. Luckily they seated us. We were at a table that would seat 5. When other people came and were being turned away, we invited them to sit with us. They turned several groups away after that. The pizza and salad were both very good.
Although I don’t think todays photos show the beauty of this place, Shirley and I had a wonderful time today. We love being about to go up to the mountain and hike every day. This trip so far had been fabulous and there will still be so much more.