On the day I had planned to visit Titlis during my stay in Luzern in late August 2016, I woke up to a gloomy, rainy day, and all the local mountain tops were in the clouds.
As I had a Tell-Pass for this part of my trip, and wanted to put it to good use despite the weather, I pulled out my map showing where it was valid, to get some ideas for what to do instead of my mountain-top visit. I settled on taking a scenic ride on regional trains through the Schöllenen Gorge to Andermatt, then along the Glacier Express route in the direction of Chur. The Tell-Pass was valid as far as Sedrun, so that is where I decided to go.
I had travelled along these routes several times on previous visits to Switzerland, but only in winter when it was all under snow, so this was a good opportunity to see it looking green. I just hoped the clouds would be high enough that the views through the Oberalppass would not be obscured!
Things didn’t start off too well! Visibility in the Schöllenen Gorge was very poor due to fog, and Andermatt was no better. In fact, as the train climbed out of Andermatt, which is one of my favourite parts of the Glacier Express route, the town itself could not be seen at all.
However, we soon left the fog below us, and while there were plenty of clouds around, they were high enough not to spoil the view – rather they lent a dramatic touch to the alpine landscape. Then by the time we arrived in Sedrun, the sun was shining!
On my previous trips on this route, I hadn’t taken much notice of Sedrun station, so I was pleased to discover there was a small flower-bedecked restaurant there, with indoor and outdoor seating. As the weather was now warm and sunny, I sat down at a table outdoors and ordered a schnitzel with salad and chips.
One of the locals walked by with his dog, and stopped to have a bit of a chat. After a while, he asked me if I was having any trouble finishing my chips! I was a bit puzzled, then he explained that if I felt like throwing a few on the ground, his dog would be very happy – so I obliged! To finish up, I indulged myself with an ice-cream sundae topped with blueberries, which the waitress told me were from the local area.
Eventually, a train bound for Andermatt arrived, and I boarded it. As we approached the Oberalppass, the weather was still holding up. Although the sunshine had disappeared, and the clouds looked menacing, it remained dry.
So I decided to get off at Oberalppass to have a look around for an hour, before continuing to Andermatt on the following train. At an altitude of 2,046 metres, this is the highest point of the Glacier Express route.
I wandered around enjoying the remote beauty of the area and the constant tinkle of cowbells. The views of the Oberalpsee (lake) and mountains changed constantly as the clouds were moving quite fast, obscuring the mountain tops, only to reveal them again suddenly a few minutes later.
Although I was the only person to get off the train at Oberalppass, there were a few other people up there, most of whom had arrived by car. I had a chat to a couple from Thüringen in Germany, who had come on an earlier train, and was impressed to see several cyclists there as well!
By the time the next train arrived, it was starting to get quite chilly, so I was glad to be on my way again. The rain was falling steadily as we reached Göschenen, and continued for the rest of the trip back to Luzern.
I have attached some photos I took during this excursion. Some of these spots I had photographed on previous trips, when they were snow covered, so I have attached some of those photos as well, for comparison.
For other ideas about how to do part of the Glacier Express route, see the section "Don't have time to do the full route?" on the following page:
For another idea, please see my post of May 24, 2017 - 4:50 AM on the following page: