Monday, October 03, 2005

Junfraujoch Revisited

My intentions to create a nicely ordered travel report have fallen under the wheels of getting back to work. (Sorry, Boq!)

In the interim, I want to add some visual imagery to my previous post about riding a train to the Top of Europe:

JungfrauThe valley below JungfrauView from Inside the Eiger

... And from the top :

The EigerGlacier river

Traveling to a snowcapped saddle between two Alps was definitely a great experience. The ride up on the Junfraujoch Railway is part of the whole experience :

The Jungfrau Railway, the highest railway in Europe and one of the most interesting of all mountain lines, was constructed in 1896-1912 from the designs of Adolph Guyer-Zeller of Zürich. It attains a height of over 11,000 ft., thus bringing the most unathletic into the upper regions of the expert climber. Most of the line is on the rack system (Strub's patent), with overhead trolleys (steepest gradient 1:4), but there is also a short section beyond Eismeer on the ordinary or 'adhesive' system (gradient 1:14). The power is generated in works near Lauterbrunnen and Burglauenen, whence it is transmitted by high-tension lines. The gauge is 3 ft. 4 in. The first section of the line is in the open air, but beyond Eigergletscher it runs through a great tunnel (4-3/4 m. long, 10 ft. high, and 10 ft. wide), piercing the limestone and gneiss rock of the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau. From the Jungfraujoch the intention was to carry up the line for 2000 ft. more, leaving the summit to be attained by an elevator 242 ft. high, but there does not seem any immediate prospect of completion of this scheme. Telescopes are provided at the stations for the use of visitors.
(Jungfraujoch Railway site)

Let me tell you, the height of the Sphinx, in the saddle between the peaks, was high enough to enjoy. You can see it at the upper right in the picture at this site. Oh - there's a lens cap up there, on the rocks under the platform. I waved bye-bye to it as it bounced over the edge away from me. I'm prolly lucky that the Hubster didn't make me go get it !!!