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Grindelwald - First

Wetterhorn, Bernese Alps

Much harder trail
18 August, 2006

Second morning in Wengen was again positive surprise – clear skies and sun. We were anxious to go again for a mountain walk to enjoy the beauty. After the breakfast, where we again enjoyed delicious Swiss cheese with oven-fresh croissants, we were ready for an adventure. We asked again advice from Theresa and decided that today’s destination will be First near Grindelwald. At the chosen trail there is Lake Bachalpsee, which was promised to be a true pearl in the mountains at 2200meters.

We took a cable car from Wengen to Männlichen and as a start of the day climbed with the trolley to the Männlichen peak, this is just 20 minutes from cable car station. First part of the trail is quite nice and easy, but then the route starts to climb up. It was quite good exercise to go there, trolley made it even better. But the view was also true beauty.

Next, we took another aerial cableway from Männlichen to Grindelwald. The ride was about 25 minutes long; we even feed our baby during the trip. Those cableways are very comfortable and during the rides there is a lot to see. We also dreamed during the ride how perfect it would be in the winter to ski here.

Then down in the Grund (the cable car station) we were a bit confused because so far the moving around has been very easy, just follow yellow signs. But now there was none directing to next cable car from Grindelwald to First. It appeared that it was quite long walk and it was climbing up (although at the road). We also walked through the downtown of Grindelwald, it was nice, but crowded.

The Grindelwald-First lift, or Firstbahnen Grindelwald, took us to the elevation of 2168 meters. This three-stage lift was once the longest chair lift in Europe, carrying passengers for a distance of more than 5 kilometers. Now there are comfortable cabins, which take you to the top in 25 minutes.

After reaching the station we went to the 360˚ panorama restaurant where thanks to the excellent weather we enjoyed spectacular view of the Grindelwald Basin and several famous mountains like Wetterhorn, Eiger and Schreckhorn.

Now it was time to walk, because we wanted to find beautiful picnic place at the road. After climbing with the trolley at the stony road for half an hour we decided that we do not go until the lake, because otherwise we will not get back with the last cable car. For future we know that for hiking in First big-wheel stroller or baby carriage is needed, city stroller is not good enough. We found the picnic place near the cafeteria, which is in use in winter and enjoyed salads we have brought with us.

On the way back we stopped at one of the middle station at the cableway to enjoy the view on Oberer Gletscher. There was also a possibility to hire a scooter and ride down to Grindelwald. We did not try, but it seemed as a great fun.