Friday, February 27, 2009

Paris-Lausanne-Leysin: Wednesday 24th February

An earlier start than we have been used to lately saw us on the metro at 6:50 heading to Gare de Lyon for our TGV to Lausanne. A couple of young women came by with a petition to sign supporting orphans in Albania, and just before the train was due to depart a man came chasing one through the carriages calling her a pickpocket – so some excitement before breakfast. The next train to Aigle was a pretty trip around the lake. The train up the mountain to Leysin went once an hour at 4 minutes to the hour. It steamed up the mountain once the cog wheels kicked in and there were beautiful views down the valley with clear blue skies and lots of snow on the ground. The trip takes about 25 min

See the little train at the start of it's journey up the mountain (just above the houses)
Arriving at the last of three stations in Leysin we headed off into a good layer of snow on the roads. The directions we had may have been easy when the roads were clear of snow, but pulling suitcases through snow was not easy – and we had left the suitcase snow tires at home! We looked a bit odd trudging down the hillside with suitcases when everyone else was walking back up with skis after a day on the slopes

Suitcases in need of snow chains

Eventually found our accommodation and we headed out for an explore. In some ways it is an odd little ski village in that it is quite spread out and has no natural town centre. In the late 1800's it changed from a farming area to being a centre for tuberculosis and health clinics. Outdoor tourism and education took over in the 1950's when antibiotics became common.

View from the balcony of our chalet

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