The round trip by PostBus through four passes of the Central Alps counts as one of my most memorable experiences in Switzerland! The thrill of the ride up and down steep, narrow, winding mountain roads and the beauty of the mountains, valleys, gorges, waterfalls and glaciers is something I will never forget. You wonder how a full-size bus can possibly make it around some of those hairpin bends, and can’t help but admire the skill of the drivers who do this on a daily basis!
It’s a full-day round trip of 208 kilometres, leaving Meiringen at 9:25 in the morning and returning at 18:10 in the late afternoon, but you are never on the bus for longer than one hour at a time without a break for stretching your legs and buying refreshments or souvenirs. All stops have toilet facilities.
My trip started at the PostAuto terminus in Meiringen, adjacent to Meiringen Railway Station. The destination on the bus read „Vierpässefahrt“ („Four Passes Trip“). The bus was completely full, my fellow-passengers being mostly German-speaking, including a retired Swiss lady from Luzern, who was doing this trip for the first time.
The bus first travelled from Meiringen (595 metres above sea level) to the Grimsel Pass (2165 metres above sea level), which took about an hour.
Initially, we travelled through green valleys surrounded by forested mountains, before turning on to the Grimsel Pass road. As we approached this road, there was a collective gasp of excitement mixed with horror, as people saw the road - which seemed to be nothing more than a narrow ledge cut into the side of a rock face - and realised we were about to turn onto it! It was a two-way road, but it seemed unlikely that two cars could pass on it, let alone a bus and a car! But we lived to tell the tale!
Forested mountains gradually gave way to rocky landscapes as we climbed above the tree line. Before reaching the top of the pass, we passed the milky-green Räterichsbodensee (Lake Räterich) and Grimselsee (Lake Grimsel), which are hydro-electric dams, and the picturesque grey stone building of the Grimsel Hospiz, with its red shutters.
Not long afterwards, we reached the top of the pass, where there was a small blue lake called the Totensee (Lake of the Dead) and a hotel/restaurant. It was a beautiful warm sunny day, and there was quite a crowd enjoying refreshments on the restaurant terrace, many of whom had arrived on a motor bike, judging by the large number of motor bikes in the car park. There is also a lovely stone chapel there, called St Christophorus.
Some photos of this sector of the trip are attached.