No Joke

A Scot, a German, and an American walk up to the ticket booth of a mountain cable car in Switzerland.

Sounds like the beginning of a cultural joke, right? Well, don't hold your breath for the punch line because the joke is on us.

"A one way ticket, please. We plan to hike back down."

The clerk glances down at our casual footwear. "No you're not. You need special equipment for that hike."

The three of us had mistakenly thought we could climb down mount Säntis wearing Pumas. (Ha!) Not gonna happen. The great thing about cable cars in Switzerland is that they are a perfectly acceptable alternative for ascending and descending a mountain. Despite the fact that most Swiss are quite sporty, it's not expected that you actually hike up mount Säntis to enjoy its vistas. In fact, riding to the top of a mountain in the comfort of a cable car, having a coffee at the panorama restaurant, catching views from different vantage points, and riding back down is a lovely way to spend the day. No nasty slips or falls or sweatstains.

Unfortunately, this particular day, the clouds were so thick, we didn't see much from the top except for a guesthouse and the weather station. The clouds started to disappear just as we boarded the cable car for our descent, which is when I took most of my photos. At least the trip wasn't too painful on my pocketbook as I paid 1/2 price with my Halbtax card. I'd definitely like to go back on a clear day.


  1. WOH! You really thought you were climbing down that mountain with just Pumas? You're braver than I am. Even the cable car looks a tad scarey!

  2. Hi Amanda,
    Loved those photos, clouds or no clouds. That's one mountain we are looking forward to checking out - maybe in Spring.
    Have a good week.

  3. HA! I love that I am not the only one. I am always trying to do things with the wrong shoes, including mountain climbing once. NEVER AGAIN. Thank goodness this kind soul clued you in. Buy some hiking shoes, then try again! :)

  4. Fly Girl - yeah, not sure what we were thinking!

    Vicky - Yes, it's an Ostschweiz "must-see." I love that while riding my bike to Lidl I can spot and distinguish between the Hoher Kasten and Säntis peaks!

    Jessica - too bad even hiking boots aren't enough to climb Säntis. you need sticks, maybe even rope... :)

  5. I have spend more than one afternoon sipping coffee on a mountaintop... it's such a "normal" thing to do here! Now that I'm back, I'll have to get used to riding in those cabins again, trying not to look down until I get up :-)

  6. Elisa - that sort of thing is exactly what I imagined living in Switzerland would be like. I have got to do it more often!


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