Highlights: Gstaad, Zweisimmen (church), Wimmis (Castle), Spiez (Castle)
Route 9- Section 3 (Gstaad 1050m-Spiez 628m)
Stats from SwitzerlandMobility.ch: 52 km (12 km unpaved). Height difference is G-S: 460m, S-G: 900m. Their site has the full profile.
September 2016 (1-day trip)
Summary: Section 3 brought us from Gstaad in the Saanenland region, to the town of Spiez on the shore of lake Thun. Apart from an initial ascent of about 200m in height, the rest of the journey is an almost constant descent during the remaining 45 km, with just few gentle hills.
Gstaad is one of the VIP alpine villages of Switzerland (see also 9:02). Its center harmoniously combines typical Swiss chalets, full of red and white flowers, with expensive restaurants and shops (there’s even Prada!). From luxury to farming, Gstaad is also impressive for the plenitude of cows (about 7,000 or 1 per inhabitant). The typical cow of this region is the Simmental cow. We were lucky to arrive during the descent of cows from high pastures, an age-old fall ritual during which the cows are walked through the village with bells and crowns of flowers.
From Gstaad the route ascends for about 6km flanked by gentle and green mountains, sparsely dotted with chalets. The first 15km (paved) from Gstaad (1050m) to Zweisimmen (947m), are shared with the Mountain Bike Route #1 -Section 15 (Alpine Route).
Past Zweisimmen, the route continues for several kilometers on an unpaved trail next to the local railroad and the small river Simme. Railroad and river, more or less close, will accompany us for the rest of the journey to Spiez/Lake Thun. The proximity to the rail tracks and stations may be convenient if one has to cut the trip short.
- BIKING THROUGH SWITZERLAND (with an electric bike)
- Route 9-Section 1 (Montreu x-Bulle).
- Route 9: Section 2 (Bulle–Gstaad)
- Route 9: Section 4 (Spiez-Meiringen)
- Route 9: Section 5 (Meiringen–Sarnen)
- Route 9: Section 6 – cycling Sarnen to Zug