Up Mount Pilatus

On Saturday we woke up to some disappointing news from the front desk at our hotel – Mount Pilatus was to be closed again for the second day in a row due to high winds.  It was hard to believe because the sun was out and it looked like we were in store for a beautiful day.  So I decided to call Pilatus myself, and they were open!  They just hadn’t updated their web page!  This turned out to be a double bonus, because we ended up having the mountain pretty much to ourselves!  We really were lucky – the mountain ended up being closed again on Sunday! 

Mount Pilatus is a 7,000 foot mountain in the Alps.  It is not anywhere near being the tallest mountain in the Alps, but it certainly provided us with plenty of excitement on Saturday.  Mount Pilatus has a gondola that takes you up the mountain.  You ride up to two different midway stations before riding a separate gondola to the peak.  Between the midway stations, you can sled down the mountain!

We knew before we left that sledding might be a possibility.  However, the boys and I didn’t bring boots with us to Italy.  A pair of Maria’s boots that she wears walking around Florence happened to be waterproof, so she was in good shape.  For a moment we entertained buying boots for the boys, but Switzerland inflation put a stop to that!  We could have rented ski or snowboard boots, but renting regular boots wasn’t possible.  A very nice lady in a sports store took pity on us, so she gave some thick plastic bags with the store’s logo on them.  And of course we had long soccer socks, so we put the bags between two layers of socks to keep our feet dry, and we were ready for the mountain! 

Here is a look up the mountain from the gondola:

Maria and Thomas were a little nervous at the start!  Actually, Nicholas was VERY nervous and he asked not to have his picture taken on this part!

There are only two gondolas that go back and forth from the second midway station to the peak.  They leave every fifteen minutes.  Does there seem to be too much slack in the cable or is it just me?

We’re about to get on the gondola for the trip to the peak!

The view on the way up was breathtaking!

The view from the peak:

We tried our best here not to squint, but it was so bright with the sun and the snow!

Lake Lucerne and the valley below Mount Pilatus

So tomorrow I will tell the story of our adventure going down Mount Pilatus!  And before you groan because you want to read the story now – understand that I need something to write about tomorrow night!  After spending the weekend away, I worked from 8am until 2pm today at the computer – grading papers and preparing for teaching tomorrow.  Then I went to the AIFS school for a meeting and I also visited with some students.  The boys and Maria spent the day doing schoolwork – all of their teachers reading this will be glad to know that they are keeping up!  When I got back at 5pm, we walked to soccer practice.  Not a real thrilling day I am afraid! 

The only real excitement tonight was at soccer when my friend Giovanni realized that the soccer games for the boys this weekend were scheduled at the same time as the big Fiorentina/Juventis match on Saturday!  What were the schedule organizers thinking!?!  I think he and Gabriele will be going to the Fiorentina game!


2 Responses to “Up Mount Pilatus”

  1. Leah Says:

    Everything is absolutely breathtaking! I really wish I could share it with you but thanks for all the pictures!

  2. Mom Says:

    Brings back memories of our gondola trip up the mountains in Banf when it stopped and we hung there in mid air for what seemed like forever. I was terrified not knowing what was happening! My hands were so sweaty I had visions of a rescue being impossible as I was sure that I would not be able to hold onto anything! The view was amazing – once we were on solid ground and I stopped shaking…..

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