Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hiking the Hinter Lauterbrunnen Valley

The upper part of the Lauterbrunnen valley has been turned into a preserve, both natural and cultural, and we decided the next day to hike a bit of it, to see a few of the 72 water falls.
Billboard map of the place














Rustic chalet with solar power














A few of the waterfalls














Bain of alpine hikers; and cows














Although the scenery was beautiful, the trail good, the
wildflowers abundant and gorgeous, this hike turned out
to be more about berries than anything else; here, the
first of the explosively delicious wild strawberries

















More waterfalls














Thus














Part of the smelter of a late medieval silver mine














But then we ran into one of the largest deposits ever of
blueberries/myrtilles/huckleberries/bilberries, whatever; no
human or ursine competition; end of hike
















We bagged enough for dessert, breakfast, and then some;
we never hike without plastic bags















It's a beautiful trail, amply cared by Tourism Stechelberg














And Vicki's knee is holding up well, despite
the weight of the berries

Gimmelwald

Vicki's new knee has been doing fine in all the city walking we have been doing, but it was time to try it on the trail in a more rough and vertical environment. So we decided to hike from the valley up to Gimmelwald, on the cliffs above, capital of the Rickie Stevie League of Cities, but also the site of pleasant other memories for us.
Vicki on the trail


















Heading up the trail


















Looking across the valley toward the big
mountains



















Achtung! Falling stones!














A glacier spilling over from one of the big mountains














Finally we reach the outskirts of Gimmelwald














Thus














Looking down to the campground and Stechelberg; not to
over-do it, we took the cable car back down















Back in the valley, looking up

Return to Lauterbrunnen

Our stay in Lauterbrunnen two years ago was marred by a lousy campground, Camping Schutzenbach or somesuch, and we moved on to Grindelwald. But before moving, Vicki had taken a hike to the end of the road and noticed another campground, Camping Rutti, in Stechelberg, which we decided to try this time. It was a good choice.
Our site at Camping Rutti


















Valley view














Ditto; not the Staubbach, but pretty good














At the campground, a cruciform tent! Is it facing east?!

Mountains

We left Basel thus edified and drove to a stellplatz that turned out to be free parking in an RV sales and service center lot down the road toward Bern. The next morning we proceeded on south, and, topping a small hill, beheld
The Berner Alps...Eiger, Monch, Jungfrau, etc. 














Thus the museum phase of our summer trip ends, and
the mountain phase begins
 

Basel Museum

Basel is one of the $wiss cities we had not previously visited, it was sort of on the way, and we were particularly interested in its museum. The museum has a seriously enforced no fotos policy, but I did snatch a few of the more interesting/compelling items. Its collection of Holbeins, elder and younger and siblings too, is the largest there is. And there is much else, right up to present.
A Cranach Paris' Judgment (same model again)














I wasn't able to "document" all my pix; I
think this is a very different Cranach
madonna and child




















As I said, there are dozens of Holbeins; here's Younger's
Erasmus















And a genre piece whose title I don't remember...damn!














And this, Junior's Entombed Christ, unusual if not
completely unique; early 1500s















Another unidentified (by me) but worthy 16th century gory
piece















And another I've got to get the title/artist for
(help me, art fans!)



















There was plenty of more recent stuff, a lot of Impressionism
and Post-Impressionism















Including this guy














Quite a few Picassos; story goes the museum wanted to
purchase a major Picasso, the local fiscal conservatives
got it put on the ballot, and the artsies won; Picasso was
sufficiently gratified that he gave the museum another
half dozen of his works


















Even a couple Dalis: here his Burning Giraffe














Courtyard of this fine museum, with copy #1,743 of Rodin's
Burghers

Monday, July 30, 2012

Freiburg Augustiner Museum

I really liked this museum. It is just a city museum, but it is superbly well done. It has collected much of the old regional art, much of it 14th and 15th century, so old that we will never know the artists, apart from "Master of the Upper Rhine," or "Master of Lake Constance," etc. It makes wonderful use of the very old Augustine monastery. And it preserves most of the great and very old art from the Freiburg Cathedral. I could post scores of pix...
Main hall, statues, gargoyles, etc. from the cathedral














A beautiful 14th century Pieta


















A Hans Bladung Grien madonna and sleeping
child, 1520




















Grien's Cupid and Flaming Arrow; early 16th














Martin Schaffner Last Judgement, c. 1500














Cathedral stained glass: "the sorrowful man"
was a genre piece in the later middle ages;
here's Mary as the sorrowful Madonna; ouch




















From the cathedral treasury, a giant silver altarpiece














A marvelous tapestry on the sins of women; Vicki insisted
on individual pix of each sin















Higher view of the hall; the statues various
saints and biblical figures; the gargoyles
(later), the seven cardinal sins, etc.




















Old organ


















I never miss a circumcision; such a large knife?














A buxom 16th century Eve; interesting how
tastes change; this is about midway between
the skinny maidens of the 16th and Rubens'
full-figured beauties of the 17th; FWIW;
AND, Vicki asks, how come Adam gets a fig
leaf and Eve doesn't?






















French-frying St. Vitus


















More cathedral windows preserved now in the museum















And a final view of the hall, with gargoyles