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The Bernese Alps: Switzerland

The Bernese Alps: Switzerland

The Bernese Alps, often called the Oberland, is a range of high mountains lying north of the Swiss Rhone, between Lake Geneva and the St Gotthard Pass. It includes famous mountains such as the Jungfrau, Monch and Eiger as well as the longest glaciers in the Alps. But there are plenty of valley paths too, to delight the walker, and a wide network of mountain huts offering accommodation. The views are amongst the finest in the Alps.
The principle centres are Interlaken, Grindelwald and Kanderstag, but there are many more delightful villages and hamlets one could use.
Flanking the northern slopes of the Rhone valley the chain of the Bernese Alps is aligned roughly east to west, stretching from the Grimsel Pass above the Haslital in the east, to the Col du Pillon below Les Diablerets in the west, thus forming the largest continuos range of mountains in the Alps. Their more familiar title, the Bernese Oberland, in fact refers to the northern side of the range only - the highlands of canton Bern. But the Bernese Alps proper, among their numerous summits almost forty reach above 3,600 metres, while the huge glacial basin on the south side of the Jungfrau gives birth to the Grosser Aletschgletscher, the largest icefield not only in Switzerland, but of all the Alpine regions. Elsewhere delicate but lofty waterfalls cascade into gorge-like valleys carved out of the mountains by the glaciers of long ago. Lakes fill the lower valleys like small inland seas (the Thunersee and Brienzeree), while more modest tarns lie trapped here and there in scoops of hillside to throw the mountains on their heads as a mirror-like bonus to those who wander by.

ISBN 1-85284-243-1

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