Kandersteg Survived – Not Quite Bankrupt Yet

Kandersteg Survived – Not Quite Bankrupt Yet

The trip to Kandersteg was a fantastic success.  I finally got out with Jessie and her Scouty pals on some reasonably high glaciers and even topped the trip off with a summit: the Hockenhorn.  That was the first time over 10,000 feet for most of the children.

Highlights of the week included Walks up to Oeschinensee with the scouts and the Explorers.  What an idyllic place this is.  Even though it is an exceptionally easy access corrie thanks to the cable car, 5 minutes walking gets you away from the busiest “throngs”.

Oeschinensee Kandersteg

Oeschinensee Kandersteg 13th Carlisle Scouts and Explorers Check the water temperature

Here everyone was getting stuck into a bit of cold lake swimming.

Granny Rodelbahn

You are never too old to tango

Here’s granny giving it what for on the Rodelbahn – max speed 2 mph!


The Explorers playing cards and enjoying the ambience of the Fründenhütte, the first alpine hut for nearly all of them.

Yeah man we’re really extreme !!!

Jess Crevasse

Following our bold guides round involved lots of crevasse jumping with our confident group.

Jess gives it some welly jumping one of the many crevasses as the group learned the basics of using ice axe and crampons to travel glaciated country safely.

Eigerwand from Kleine Scheidegg

The classic view of the Eigerwand from Kleine Scheidegg station as we waited for our train to arrive.

Next time I’m here; I wonder if I will have the fitness and the nuts to attempt the old Ogre itself?  Despite the ever more rattly natue of this wall, it still has a fascination, stemming from the old stories of 1930’s epics.

Explorers at summit of Hockenhorn

Explorers at the summit of the Hockenhorn after a steady 4 hour ascent

The Explorers who were still standing enjoy an atmospheric hour at the summit of their first alpine peak, the Hockenhorn.   It looked doubtful that we could get up at one point as the snowfield was bare and icy, and the scout centre in their “wisdom” had sent us out with ice axes but no crampons.  Our guide was a lad from Hong Kong who had probably never seen snow before his training days in Switzerland.  Luckily the “old fox” was able to pick a safe way through the scree below the snowslope and get the gang through.

Descent from Hockenhorn

Descent from the Hockenhorn was really atmospheric as streamers of cloud recirculated down wind of the subsidiary summit

As we descended from the Hockenhorn, the clouds began to break up more and revealed the almost Mars like landscape of the Lötschenpass (2690m).  The geology of this area must be like a mystery novel.

The ascent of the Hockenhorn was the highpoint of the trip from a mountaineering point of view.

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