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caught up and repeatert by the echoes of the vast cliff of the Wetterhorn, and return to the ear refined and softened, yet perfectly distinct, as it were an aërial concert warbling among
The view down the valley of Grindelwald, from the top of the Scheideck, is very striking; its green pastures contrast agreeably with the bare wall of the Wetterhorn. Beyond it on the 1. rises the sharp crest of the Eigher, resembling the up-turned edge of a hatchet; and the pointed cone of the Schreckhorn appears above the Mettenberg. On the top of the Scheideck (6711 feet above the sea-level), stands a chalet, weather-tight, affording one or two beds for such travellers as are driven to sleep here; and a cup of coffee or hot milk for those who desire to warm themselves after their cold morning's ride over the mountains.
The prospect in the opposite direction, into the vale of the Reichenbach or of Rosenlaui, is not remarkable. High upon the rt. appears the glacier of Schwarzwald, between the Wetterhorn and Wellhorn; further on, between Wellhorn and · Engel-Hörner (angels'peaks), the Glacier of Rosenlaui lies embedded. An hour and a half's walking from the chalet, partly through a wood of firs, brings the traveller abreast of this glacier, which lies about a mile to the rt. of the path in the midst of a forest of firs. It is smaller than those of Grindelwald, but is celebrated above all others in Switzerland for the untarnished purity of its while surface, and the clear transparent azure of its icebergs. This peculiarity arises doubtless from the character of the rocks around it; these in decomposing, do not turn into black gravel or mud, which stains and disfigures the Grindelwald glaciers. A steep path on the I. of the glacier leads in about 1/2 an hour to the summit of a cliff, which projects midway into the icy sea, and bends its course considerably.' It forms a good point of view.
The guides usoally halt for an hour to refresh themselves and their beasts at
4 The Baths of Rosenlaui, a homely inn, called the Steinbock, erected over a source of mineral water, which supplies 5 or 6 rude tubs of wood, serving as baths, The number of guests who resort hither for the use of them is very limited. This house is distant about 1 1/2 mile from the glacier. A few yards behind it, the Reichenbach torrent issues out of a clest in the rock. The path to Meyringen runs by the side of this stream, first crossing a charming little green plain, carpeted with soft turf, like that of an English lawn, and dotted with chalets. The view up the valley from this point deserves particular notice; it is a favourite subject for the pencil of ihe artist. The Wetterhorn, the Wellhorn, and the craggy
peaks called Engel-Hörner, form a mountain group unrivalled for picturesqueness.
Below this the valley contracts, numerous waterfalls are seen dangling from its sides : one of them, from its height and tenuity, is called the Rope-fall (Seilbach); and now a bird's-eye view opens out into the vale of Hasli, or Meyringen, which in comparison with the narrow glens of Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen deserves the name of a plain, though bounded by mountains high and steep.
The latter part of the descent leading into it, iş both difficult and dangerous, unless the horses are very sure-footed, owing to the steepness and ruggedness of the path and its being paved with smooth and slippery blocks of stone. On this account travellers are usually invited to dismount and descend on foot. The stream of the Reichenbach performs this descent of nearly 2000 feet in a succession of leaps, the longest of which are the celebrated Falls of the Reichenbach. The upper fall is situated about 100 yards to the l. of the road near the village called Zwirghi. A small fee is exacted for the liberty to cross the meadow between it and the road, and a hut called Belvedere is built beside it. But it is best seen from a rocky headland shooting out in front of the bare amphitheatre of clitl's over which the cataract dashes, and just above the struggling torrent, hurrying downwards after its fall. A little lower is another, but inferior, fall, and by a third, still lower, the stream gains the level of the valley, and hastens to join its waters to the Aar. The lowest fall is not more than 50 yards from the
Baths of Reichenbach, a new inn, on a very extensive scale, situated directly under the road leading to the Scheideck, beneath a hanging wood and in grounds that remind one of an English park. Though provided with hot and cold baths it is less resorted to by invalids than by passing travellers. It is a good house, not dear; table d'hôte at 1 and 7. It is distant about a mile from the village of
2 1/4 Meyringen-(Inns : Sauvage, good; Bär, Ours).Of late these houses have been, to a certain extent, deserted for the above-named Baths of Reichenbach, situated on the opposite side of the valley. There is another good inn, the Couronne, on this side.
Meyringen, the chief place in the vale of Hasli, lies on the rt. bank of the Aar, and contains about 700 inhabitants. The picturesqueness of its situation is much praised. Brockedon says, “ The vale of Meyringen concentrates as much of what is Alpine in its beauties as any valley in Switzerland.” Its precipitous and wooded sides, streaked with white cascades almost without number, and here and there overtopped by some snow-white peak, are indeed beautiful
features. Yet the flat plain, 3 miles broad, half marsh and, half dry gravel, from inundations of the river, are unpleasing from many points, and as a dwelling-place it has serious drawbacks from the danger to which it is exposed of being swept away or inundaded, if not buried by the neighbouring torrents. It was to guard against such accidents that the stone dyke, 1000 feet long and 8 wide, was constructed; but its protection has not been altogether effectual. The chief cause and instrument of all the mischief is the Alpbach, a mountain torrent, pouring down from the height behind the village, out of a narrow gorge. The district in which it rises, and through which it takes its course, is composed of the rock known lo geologists as the lias marle. Being very sost it is easily disintegrated and washed away, so that the torrent, when swollen by rain or snow, collects, and bears. along with it heaps of black sand and rubbish, intermixed with uprooted fir-trees, and is converted almost into a stream of mud, on which masses of rock float like corks. A torrent of such consistence is easily interrupted in its course through the narrow crevices, which it seems to have sawn for itself by the force of its current; it then gathers into a lake behind the obstacles which impede it, until it is increased to such an extent as to bear everything before it, and to spread desolation over the valley through which its course lies. A catastrophe of this sort, in 1762, buried a large part of the village of Meyringen, in one hour, 20 feet deep in rubbish, froin which it has hardly yet emerged. The church was filled with mud and gravel 10 the height of 18 feet, as is denoted by the black line painted along its walls, and by the debris which still covers many of the fields and gardens around. Ju 1733 an inundation of the same stream carried away many houses.
The intelligent traveller Hugi, from whom the above particulars are derived, recommends travellers to visit the Fall of the Alpbach about 9 in the morning, on account of the triple bow, or iris, formed in its spray, when the sun shines on it. The inner iris forms nearly a complete circle; and the outer ones are more or less circular as the water in the falls is abundant or not. The spot whence it is visible is. within the spray, from the cataract, so that those who would enjoy it must prepare for a wetting.
On a rock above the village rise the ruins of the Castle of Resti; it belonged to an ancient and noble family, to whom the praise is given of never tyrannizing over their humble dependants. The men of Hasli are celebrated for their athletic forms and strength. They hold Zwingfeste, or wrestling matches every year, on the 10th of August, with Their neighbours of Unterwalden; and on the first Sunday in.
September with those of Grindelwald, The women, again, enjoy the reputation of being prettier, or rather, less plain than those of most other Swiss valleys. Their holiday costume is peculiar and not ungraceful, consisting of a boddice of black velvet, reaching up to the throat, starched sleeves, a yellow petticoat, and a round black hat, not unlike a soupplate, and about the same size, stuck on one side of the head, and allowing the hair to fall in long tresses down the back.
Five roads concentrate at Meyringen: 1, lo Brienz (a char road); 2, to Lucerne, by the Brünig ; 3, over the Susten to Wasen on the Si. Gotthard road (12 stunden); 4, to the Grimsel; 5, to Grindelwald, by the Scheidek. The magnificent fall of the Aar at Handeck on the way to the Grimsel (Route 28), is about 14 miles distant. Travellers, not intending to cross the whole pass, may make an interesting excursion thither from Meyringen; as they may also to the summit of the Brünig, about 6 miles distant, whence there is a beautiful view of the vale of Hasli on one side, and of Lungern on the other. (Route 19).
Meyringen to Interlachen by Brienz and the Giesbach
Fall. 3 1/2 stunden to Brienz, and 3 3/4 thence to Interlachen by water=23 3/4 English miles.
There is an excellent char road down the valley, passing numerous cascades leaping down the wall of rock. Alter proceeding for about 4 iniles along thcl. bank of the Aar, it crosses the river by a wooden bridge, just at the point where the branch of the Brünig road, leading to Brienz, descends into the valley. The Aar pursues its course through monolonous marsh and flat meadow land, but near its influx into The lake of Brienz, the forms of the mountains on its 1. bank, above which towers the Faulhorn, is grand. In skirting the margin of the lake the road crosses vast heaps of debris covering acres of land once fertile. A torrent of mud, in 1797, destroyed a considerable part of two villages near Kienholz, and a landslip from the Brienzcrgrat, the mountain immediately behind Brienz, overwhelmed in November 1821, 40 acres of land, and swept 6 persons into the lake. It is 1 1/2 hours' drive from Meyringen to
3 1/2 Brienz-Inn: weisses Kreutz, Croix Blanche, clean) -a sinall village ai the E. end of the lake, on a narrow ledge at the foot of the mountains, remarkable only for its beautisul situation and its vicinity to the Giesbach Fall.
Lake of Brienz.–Giesbach Falls. A boat, with 3 rowers, from Brienz to Interlachen, stopping at the Giesbach, costs 63 batz=about 9 Fr. fr.
There is a very rough road along the N. shore of the lake; the guides with the horses may be sent round by it, and desired to meet the travellers close to the bridge at Interlachen. It takes 25 minutes to row from Brienz to ihe landing-place close to the outlet of the Giesbach, where tra vellers begin to ascend the steep height leading to the Falls. They are a succession of cascades, leaping step by step from the top of the mountain; and though inferior in height to the Reichenbach, surpass it in beauty, and in the adjuncts of a rich forest of fir, through the midst of which they break their way, The Giesbach is one of the prettiest of waterfalls; there is nothing wild about it, and the immediate contact of green turfy knolls and dark woods, has the effect of a park scene. It is possible to pass behind the middle fall by means of a gallery constructed beneath the shelving rock, from which it casts itself down; and the cffect of the landscape seen athwart this curtain of water is singular. The cottage opposite the Falls is inhabiled by the schoolmaster of Brienz, whose family and himself are celebrated as the best choristers of native airs in Switzerland. He is now a patriarch of 61, and most of his children are married ; but he is training his grand-children to the same profession of songsters. The concert, accompanied by the Alpine horn, with which travellers are saluted on their departure, is very sweet. Good specimens of the Swiss inanufacture of carved wood may be purchased at the Giesbach. There is a path from the Giesbach to the top of the Faul horn, a walk of nearly 5 hours. The lake of Brienz is about 8 miles long, near the mouth of the Giesbach, 500 feet deep; but in the deepest part 2100 feet. Its surface is 10, or according to some statements, 30 feet higher than the lake of Thun.
PASS OF THE GRIMSEL, -MEYRINGEN TO OBER-GESTELEN
To the Hospice 6 1/4 stunden = 20 English miles.
Thence to Ober-Gestelen 9 1/4 stunden 30 1/4 English miles.
Ober-Gestelen to Brieg 10 3/4 stunden = 35 English miles.
A much frequented, but rather difficult, bridle-path. It is a good day's journey of 8 hours to reach ihc Hospice from