Monday, September 3, 2012

The busy days... (part 2)

In my last post, I told you that my busy days were over. The wedding has past (beautiful ceremony) and still I haven't find the time to write something untill now. Originally this post was planned to go up ages ago, but sometimes life just catches up and you have no choice but to accept it's wishes and commands. But enough of that. Let's head over to my wonderful vacation from 2 weeks ago.

We planned to ride to our destination in 2 steps. Along the way - a bit further than halfway -  we would stop and go camping for one night. Bit as it turned out, everything went so smooth we decided to do it in 1 day. So we arrived a full day ahead of schedule at our destination: Chamonix (FR). That 'little' town below the Mont Blanc. It really is a lovely town and our campsite was just at the corner of the Mèr de Glace. I didn't even give my Other Half the time to set the tent to take pictures of our breathtaking view at the Mèr de Glace and the Mont Blanc.

The corner of Mèr de Glace
The Mont Blanc

As nightfall closes in and the clouds begin to gather, you really get the most amazing views of the mountains surrounding the town.

The first two days we just hanged out at Chamonix. One reason for that was because we arrived a day ahead and the other reason is that we couldn't go to our place the next day untill 4pm. Day 3 was our first hiking-trip-day. And i have to say, we kicked it off real good. It was a beautiful track, with it's ups and downs (litterally and figuratively). My OH even saw some real wild animals, but everytime I tried to locate them, they vanished or I just didn't see them! The first hiking-trail was one of the more difficult ones, according to the map. But I have to say: except for the beginning and the end, it wasn't bad or difficult at all.

Trail to Le Lac Blanc

If I'm not mistaken, that first hike lead us to Le Lac Blanc. 2 Lakes made purely out of ice water from the glacier. That ice water is really ice and ice cold! You know the funny part? When we were up there, 2 people just jumped in and began to swim a few rounds!

Le Lac Blanc
The Mèr de Glace viewed from Le Lac Blanc

The same day, after our first hike, we went to the Brévent, one of the mountains across the Mont Blanc with a terrific view at the Mont Blanc (ofcourse). We decided we had hiked enough for the day, we took the téléphérique, instead of walking up the mountain for several hours. Now, what you guys need to know about this specific téléphérique - an elevator on cables - is that it didn't just go up the mountain along the side. Nope, that was just the first part (wich was terrifying enough for me). The second part, you hang god knows how high above the ground, while two cables lead your cabin across, from one mountain to another. I'll tell you this: I didn't leave that pole in the middle of the cabin one second. I can handle hiking along the abyss, because I controll my own legs, but depending an a device (wich was really, really safe by the way) to take you across one, that's a whole other story! But, just look at the picture, it was worth it!

At the Brévent with the Mont Blanc on the background

Day 4. A day I will never, ever forget! Starting at Chamonix-town we hiked all the way to the Mèr de Glace. Dear readers, I definatly died at least 3 times along the path! But, Jesus, what a lovely and rewarding route! Lovely and rewarding, but oh so steep! And do you know the hardest part? At the beginning you think: ow, this must be the hardest part. Just hang on and it'll be over. And for a moment it does. But here it comes... Ones you get out of the trees and hit the rocks, that's where the real challenge begins. That was my first breakpoint. My OH encouraged me, so I did get to the first stop for some refreshments and ice cream (the best I've ever tasted and oh-so-welcome!). But it's not over yet. There is still a stiff climb ahead of you (I broke down twice). Even though, now I'm very, very proud of myself that I could do it, despite the times that I was so exhausted that the beautiful view couldn't even destract me of my suffering.

It's a good thing that after such a long and difficult hike, the reward matches up with your effort. The Mèr de Glace is something you have to have seen to really believe and appreciate it. At the picture below you can see some caves cut out in the rocks. Well, all that rocky-surface? That's ice. I'm not kidding. If you look real close, you can see the clear blue glow at the border of the cave. They cut the cave out, every year, because the Mèr de Glace crawls 30m a year. The other holes you see are the caves from the previous years. How amazing is that? A real river of ice, moving very slowly 30m a year.

The Mèr de Glace

Next time, I'll show you some more of Chamonix. We just did soooooooo much it's hard to put it all in one post, even though I'm just highlighting everything!

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