Friday, August 08, 2008

My Mom Rocks!

We enjoyed another summer visit with my Mom & John. I had the fun of downloading the SD cards from all of our camera's and it was great to have John's photo's which capture pic's we might not ever see otherwise.

This is from my camera - thanks Bart - and reflects our mutual love of the long short while hiking. It's cold enough on the glacier but not so cold - about 45-48 degr. F - and we were doing most of our hiking at a lower elevation which was around 75 F. So the shorts on the CA natives made sense. We aren't trying to make a fashion statement. Here's where we get to the Rocky part. I got my Mom's OK to post some pic's of her. Most of you have heard how she has rock/mountained climbed for the past 20+ years now. With the help of John's pictures, you can now see her in action.

These pic's are from a Via Ferrata (VF) route in Muerren. VF's are a route comprised of ladder rungs, cabled walkways, etc... that allow climbers to scale route's without the use of belay partners. They must clip into the route via use of short ropes and carabiners and it can tire out the hands clipping in & out so often. But it is necessary for safety - these routes still require the use of common sense, skill and safety precautions.

Lauterbrunnen is a long way down!
Tightrope walking! She has clipped onto both cables at shoulder height and is crossing the ravine on the single foot cable. Requires a lot of balance - both she and John said it would be a very uncomfortable slip and recovery if you lose your balance.
The Schwartzhorn VF - lot of loose rock plus hiking - an 8 hr day.
These are a couple pic's from John's camera on his Eiger trip. The 'normal' approach to the Eiger summit is from the Mittelegge hut, not the North Face. The North Face approach is from the bottom front of the mountain of which I've posted pic's of before. So the climbers exit the Jungfraubahn at the Eismeer station and then must hike, via crampons & ice axe's to the Mittelegge Hut.

Not a sight your average tourist to Switzerland will ever see - and I'm happy to look at the pic's. I don't know whose this profile is. Note the ice axe's in the rack - they aren't allowed in the Hut. Hmm - a little altitude and the climber's go crazy?

And the Eiger - up close and personal. Pretty cool.
Hope you enjoyed the pic's.

We are off to Italy tomorrow for a last trip before school starts on Aug. 20. You may say, "But you've been on vacation all summer" - it's all been with other people. So we are going, alone, just the 4 of us.

To stay for a week on a wine estate between Florence & Siena - Tuscan/Chianti region.

I AM SO EXCITED. B keeps asking "Is there air-conditioning?" I keep saying "probably not." They don't do a lot of air conditioning in Europe. But the owners, who are American, said they were just there last week and it really cools down in the evening and confirmed no, no air conditioning. They have room fans. AND I AM SO EXCITED.

Don't know that we'll take the computer so it may be a week...Ciao!

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