Switzerland and Germany

We are enjoying our week RCI accommodations in Switzerland. Getting use to the altitude is interesting. We decided to take a hike in the mountains and search for the illusive “Moufflon”. To us English folk, this is French for mountain sheep or ram. See pictures. We took a tough hiking trail and were fortunate enough to see them. We were determined to get as close as we could and began scaling up the mountain to get a close encounter. Interestingly, the males stood their ground protecting their herd until we approached, but at approximately 150 yards from them and then they ran and the herd disappeared into the mountain bush. That was cool and would have to rate as one of the most memorable events we have experienced so far, as it was just them and us, at 2000 feet in the Swiss Alps.
Next day we went to the city of Geneva for the day. We walked the old part of the city and drove by the United Nations building. The highest fountain in the world blew straight up in the air as we arrived but was turned off due to windy conditions. Strange.
The following day we went to a triple tour attraction. The first stop was the Nestlé’s chocolate factory where we gorged ourselves in more free chocolate samples this time in Switzerland. Drew had so many chocolates in his hand that they all melted in his hand and he ended up washing them down the drain them. Next was Gruyere Castle from the Twelfth century. It was pleasantly well done, as we have become sort of experts in castle refurbishing and presentations.  Then it was off the Cheese Factory in the pretty little town of Gruyere. Again the tour was very educational and interesting. More free samples! Cheese and chocolate! Yummy!
During the trip, the kids keep asking us would we ever consider living in the place we are visiting.   Montreux, Switzerland was the first we answered “absolutely!” Beautiful, beautiful small city pressed between the Alps and Geneva Lake. This was also the home of deceased rocker Freddie Mercury of Queen. There is a cool statue of him right on the boardwalk. All this wonderful touring has been accompanied by perfect weather, with sunny skies and temperatures ranging from 21 to 24 C.
On our final tour day we went to the largest mountain in Europe called Mount Blanc. It was not that far from the resort and proved to be a well worth the 150 km trip. Over 4800 meters tall, Mount Blanc’s peaks are covered in snow (hence it’s name). We decided to pass on the Gondola ride to the top of the mountain and opted for a trip to the nearby glacier called La Mer De Glace, which is 400 meters thick in the middle. Each year, they actually drill giant holes in the glacier and create and art like gallery inside. Inside there was a old Swiss man with an acting Red Cross St-Bernard dog who was selling photographs of tourist posing with his dog. The kids really thought that was great.  Check out the pictures once we get them on our blog, it was really neat. The Glacier is re-drilled every year because it moves a centimeters an hour and eventually destroys the existing tunnels. The glacier is in an alarming 10 meter a year recession. They have a sign were it was in 1980 and it is inconceivable how much it has melted.
Switzerland and our accommodations was fantastic, we loved it all and hope to return someday. We are now departing for Germany to spend a week in our second RCI accommodation in Mitterfels Germany. Stay tuned for Oktoberfest updates! Ziggy Ziggy Ziggy Ziggy Hoy Hoy Hoy !


10 responses to “Switzerland

  1. The architecture really is Art work everywhere in Europe. When I lived in Calgary, someone new fr Europe asked me where the Chateaux-Forts were. My answer was are you kiddin’? The whole country was started in Quebec city in 1608, we are a baby country compared to the rest of the world.


  2. Hello McLellands
    So very jealous of you all right now, so very happy that you are fulfilling your dreams! Thanks for all the blog entries, and all of the pictures! Jessica, Jayden says hello!


    • mcclellandfamilyof4

      Hello Harty family for the MCClellands,

      Things are going pretty good and we are presently in Istanbul Turkey. We were having breakfast this morning in our tiny little hotel downtown and struck up a conversation with a woman and her friend staying in the same hotel and are holidaying from Canada. Turns out she grew up in Swift Current and is Kevin’s first cousin Bridgette. Small world eh ! She said to tell you that we met in jail, but it isn’t really appropriate when you are in Turkey because it could be true ! Jessica says hi to Jayden and we hope all is well with you all.

      Take care Darren and Family


  3. Hello from Pattaya Thailand!

    Finally I have had the internet set up bandwidth and wherewithal to view your blog.

    AMAZING! What a fantastic adventure.

    We are really looking forward to following along your adventures and meeting up with you in Asia.

    Looks like Thailand may be our base until next spring, but who knows.

    Enjoy the rest of Europe!

    See you soon!

    Jan and Chris


    • mcclellandfamilyof4

      Hi Jan, Wow ! you are in Thailand ! How do you like it there ? What are you planning to do ? We will keep your email if you could pass on a phone # we could SKYPE you.

      We are on are way to Spain today for a week. It sure is going fast !

      Take care, and we hope to see you in the early spring . Darren


      • Hi Again…. Happy Thanksgiving!

        I am on Skype at janice.wood.

        We are living in Pattaya – kind of an icky place, but I have a job teaching at a private kindergarten if I want it and I figure it will be a good thing to have on a CV and good experience. That will go until the spring.

        So we will be seeing you on the Asia leg of your trip for sure!!!

        Your experience sounds amazing! I am so envious.

        Until next time!


        from Chris and Jan


      • Hello McClellands!
        Yup, that is Kevin’s cousin alright! Her mom had told us she was in Turkey
        (not sure why and don’t wanna know….if you know what I mean….) but I
        thought the odds of you actually running into her were astronomical if at
        all possible or I would have mentioned it… funny how that works eh? I
        had heard that Bridgette loves it there, how about you all?
        I’ve been keeping an eye on your blog (actually both eyes) and I wish I
        were you. It must be quite the adventure. Your photos are awesome! Keep
        them coming! You all look well, as I hope you all are!
        Take care
        God Bless you all
        Jessica- you look like Tinkerbell in the photo with the wings, thats what
        Jayden thought!
        Thanks for the email
        Terry, Kevin and Jayden


  4. Hi Guys, looks like you guys are having an amazing time in Europe! Better to be there than here right now since it just snowed yesterday, Oct 8th! Booooo!!!! It is way too soon for winter but that’s Saskatchewan for you. Anyhow, hope you are all well and we are enjoying your blogs…keep them coming…..Tina and Hayley


  5. Happy Thanksgiving!! Had the chance to review your blog and we are glad to see you are all enjoying the experience. Riders are tied with Calgary for 1st place in West, they play each other on upcoming Saturday in Calgary. Take care….


  6. Happy Thanksgiving McCllellands!! Looking forward to hear how your trip is coming along! we all love reading your updates.
    Kim, Marty and Braydon Cobb


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