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Back to the Alps


After a week in Lausanne training, Ross and I headed back up into the Mountains to Dieter Wolf’s place in Davos.

One of our first missions was to go to a supermarket and get some food so we could save some money and have a home cooked meal! Mission 1 complete and after a complete day of rest it was time for Mission number 2. We took a small amount of gear and headed up the Sertig valley with the objective of getting up high, so we could run along the ridgeline back to the house. All up about 2-3hours running…. well I wasnt so sure of that time estimate… but anyway… luckily I brought some food with me!

Ross at the top of the Sattlehorn (2982m)

The weather wasnt too bad to begin with but later in the day the thunder storms were supposed to run in, so we ideally wanted to be back by then. The running was quite easy to begin with but it wasnt long before the alittude got to us. at about 2200m we pretty much gave into to the idea of running up hill, so it was a fast walk. We skirted around a glacier then straight up quite an easy but steep gully, which lead us straight to the top, and a high point of 2982m according to my watch… not quite 3000m but oh well another time. The ridge at the top was quite exposed and we had to scramble a little bit across, around and down the cliffs until we got to a point where it was fairly dicey for us to go much further. Back a little from the top of the cliff we were faced with was a nice scree escape route which we didnt waste any time in going down.

Once down onto safer ground we could run quite easily down hill. Traversing across the hillside we saw some Chamois hooning down the hill running away from us. Then a bit further down we figured out what the high pitch squeal was we kept hearing, a Marmot standing guard above it’s hole. We stopped and checked them out for a bit then moved on. After about the tenth Marmot we saw we pretty much had lost interest. A bit further on we stumbled across a strange little hut built into a rocky little valley. It was a cool little spot out in the middle of nowhere complete with a water source. Eventually we traversed across the hillside and into the correct valley we needed to be in and then it was a bash down through the undergrowth dropping about 300m until we hit the track.

Some orienteering and intervals were next on the agenda and after a bit of  rest we tackled a local map, followed up with intervals later in the day. Intervals at alitude (1500m) proved to be a tough experience! It was really hard to breathe and it felt like we were moving quite slow but the times were not all that bad.

The highlight of the week in terms of orienteering was a long course up at Flüela Pass. Ross planned a course that was mainly down hill, which meant a run up hill to the start. Lucky for us we managed to hitch hike a ride to the top of the pass with a guy which could not speak a word of English, and us we couldnt speak a word of Swiss German but he seemed very friendly and probably had an interesting story to tell his family when he got home! The map was one of the coolest I have ever run on, it was a pity it was so late in the evening and raining hard out.

The last couple of days in Davos we did some scooter riding down the Sertig Valley, a sprint around Davos and some more intervals before making our Journey back across Switzerland to Lausanne, via Solothurn for some training along the way. Another really cool map!

So we are all back in Lausanne now counting down the days until WOC starts…not long now, 5 more days!

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Categories: Orienteering, Running

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