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reveries of an amateur long-distance hiker

June 3

June 3rd, 2016

June 3
Flueli-Ranft to Emmetten 25 km

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We could not find a place to stay in Beckenried (very expensive lakefront town) so we had to catch a bus from there to Emmetton. It will take some maneuvering to get back on the trail tomorrow, but that’s always part of the walk. An uneventful but pleasant day as the trail worked its way down a valley connecting a series of lakes. Instead of walking the valley floor, we stayed up on a low ridge, crossing pine forests and more pastures. On days where the hiking conditions are less than optimum–it rained most of the time–there are sometimes moments that surprise and remind you that’s why you are out walking to begin with. Often it’s a particular view–trees, rocks, cliffs, waterfalls, wildflowers, moss–but sometimes it’s just happenstance good fortune. One difficult part of trekking in Switzerland is that simple quick food is often hard to find. Towns have restaurants with full meals and table cloths, not a place for a wet muddy hiker who just wants a bocadillo and a pint. Today, walking through Stans, we passed places that seemed too nice for our manure-laden shoes. Then we passed an unassuming pasta shop, stopped and went in. The young cook spoke some English, welcomed us to the wooden picnic tables, served up big bowls of pasta with asparagus, olive oil, and sundried tomatoes washed down by a home-brewed beer from Kern (a village just down the road). All the tastes were perfect, and we cherished every bite and every swallow. Those are the moments walking creates.

T. Hugh Crawford

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