I know people like to complain about phones and social media but I also appreciate the fact that I can go to the mountains and bring some tiny e-friends along in this phone of mine. We can chat, point out stuff we see, be social, just like when I’m here with friends in person. Sure, we might not be *best* friends but I’m enjoying the company of all of you so thanks for that. 😄

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The Bisse du Rho starts innocently enough. The further up you go, the more obvious is the historic root: to divert a water source and bring the water into the next valley. These days, hiking trails have been built next to these old water ways.
In the local German dialect these are known as Suonen; Bisse is the local French word for these water chutes.


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Further up, these water chutes are more hazardous – these days the hiking trails are secured but think about it: how did they build these water chutes in the old days? Lying on their bellies on wooden planks, driving in the wooden poles for another one or two meters…

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Love the plant life, too. Sadly, I have no idea what these are. I’m guessing the purple ones are all orchids? These are the pictures of the rarer plants I saw at the end of the valley.

Also I hate how iOS keeps suggesting The Valley for the valley. There is more than one valley, you idiots.

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Driving down one side The Valley and up another takes about 1.5h. Today we spent at least 3h in a car. 😩
In the Val d’Anniviers we took a chairlift from Chandolin up to La Tsapé and walked 20min to Lac Noir.

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Before reaching the Lac Noir, there was another lake to see on our left, the Illsee. I’m not sure how impressive the panorama is once it’s uploaded to Mastodon. 😅

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My stepmom is in a neighboring valley and sends me this (from the Gemmi pass).

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Today we went for a walk along the Bisse du Tsittoret. Another water canal to bring water from a steep valley with no agriculture to a neighboring valley where it is needed. Small gates regulate the water flow. Every owner along the way has well defined sluice gate opening hours.

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At the top of the water fall is the end of the valley – this is where all the water is collected. Sorry for posting three very similar pictures. I just can’t pick my favorite one.

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Today we went to Hospice de St. Bernard, famous for its dogs. In the winter of 1935 they had 24m of snow up there, I heard. The hospice now also has a museum, a dog station, a hotel, a coffee shop, a souvenir shop, there’s another restaurant, and more places to stay and and eat and drink on the Italian side.
Also, a long drive down to the valley floor, to Martigny, and up the other valley – and back again. More than 3h in the car. 😓

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We looked down the Italian side from St. Bernard and it was glorious. On the way back we stopped at a tiny town called Sembrancher – people repurposing and reusing the old wooden stables and granaries. At least that’s what I think they used them for.

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Last day in the mountains. Again, a long drive down and back up – then the cable car from Vercorin up to La Crête du Midi and a walk into the Réchy valley…

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@superruserr I just type from-to into the time table on sbb.ch, the Swiss railway site. It’s 3h22 from where we live near Zürich by public transport and costs a bit more than $50/person one way. I’d use booking.com for hotels if I didn’t already know the hotel I want to stay in.

@kensanata Lucky so-and-so!

I also like to hike in sandals. Good to see your dirty feets delving into Earth as human ought.

Enjoy, suffuse, abide...

@Shufei ever since I read Born to Run I’ve been a big proponent of sandals. It was good enough for the Roman Legion it’s probably good enough for an IT nerd. 😅

@kensanata Is it legal and/or possible to camp off the trail in yon mountains? I’ve been fancying a hike up and past Berchtesgaden for a while, but don’t know much about the CH forestry.

@kensanata Dann werde ich einfach sehr ruhig sein, wo ich campe, haha.

@kensanata why is it called black lake? i thought noir was french? this is swiss.

@nergal I don’t understand the question. Switzerland has four official languages?

@kensanata i am guessing german, russian, welsh, and french?

@kensanata romansh and italian? never saw switzerland as being that affected by italy

@nergal @kensanata ;-) - I did meet a team working for the Swiss Federal government who were one each of German Swiss, French Swiss, Italian Swiss and French. To keep things appropriately neutral the manager was Irish Swiss!

@edavies it’s weird to consider that there are far fewer romance speakers than Portuguese, Serbian or Croatian speaking people. Language number four is a super tiny minority, sadly.

@kensanata instead of making a damn, they use a lake? how is water piped? pumps?

@kensanata think i see the artifices serving as rims and walls

@kensanata I have a theory about Switzerland. It's not a very good theory but it came to me while riding on a little Swiss mountain train (from Saanenmöser to Montreux) while discussing handling units in some aeronautical software with my then boss.

It's that Switzerland results from a feet/metres fuck up. Namely, the country was designed in metres but then had to be inserted into a hole specified in feet so had to be scrunched up to fit.

Whatever, the result is rather fetching.

@kensanata Spectacular view. Is this rest of snow I see on one picture?

Critisism, intended to be constructive 

@kensanata I think the second video is much more satisfactory [¹] as it follows the water down for most of the clip.

If you look at videos by professionals or more-experienced amateurs (e..g, serious YouTubers) they almost never use panning shots unless it follows somebody or something moving. It's to do with not drawing attention to the edge of the screen, I think. Whatever, pans like that make me fidget.

[¹] Apart from the orientation. Tempting with such a vertical thing but that's not enough excuse.

@edavies yeah the amount of work required to make good videos far exceeds my patience that’s for sure

@kensanata the third picture is a beautiful view. Nice photos. :)

@kensanata The top left one is Lilium martagon (Turk's cap lily). The top right is indeed an orchid, I don't know which one. The bottom left I have sadly forgotten; bottom right looks like Laburnum alpinum (golden rain)

@kensanata Never seen anything like the ones with the brown cones in.


Wonderful ones, it is always amazing to look at the artwork nature is constantly delivering.

And it is pretty sad to realize we destroy most of it.


Someone found that Google Translate was rendering the Finnish for "railway station" as "Caltrain station". Not sure if they've fixed that yet!

@kensanata pflanzen-bestimmung.de/en website that enables you to search about plants describing their properties

@_1751015 @kensanata Many thanks for that. I was just able to identify a plant that PlantNet didn't even consider among the suggesions (which are often wide to the point of being useless).

@kensanata The first one is, in french "Lys Martagon". It's a protected variety (at least in France). The second one is some kind of orchid, and the rest, no idea ;-)

@kensanata oops, sorry, didn't read the thread; you already got the answer!

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