Finally, the long awaited day is here – we are traveling up the mountain to view the spectacular Matterhorn! Looking out from the balcony of our hotel we see that it is raining, but no worries, a little rain can’t stop us from our journey. We headed down to breakfast then on to our meeting point for the 9:00 start of our trip. Bad news awaited us – the cable cars are not going all the way to the top of the mountain due to high winds. 😦 There is hope; however, our excursion has been delayed until 12:30 in hopes that the weather will clear and we can travel the full height of the mountain.
With some extra time on our hands, we took off for a walk around the town of Zermatt. There is a main street with many shops and restaurants and although it rained fairly hard the whole time, it was fun looking at the souvenirs and seeing what the town had to offer. It was still raining at 12:30 and word had come down that the cable cars still weren’t going to the summit due to high winds. It was decided that we would still journey up the mountain and go as high as was allowed with hopes that the higher elevations would open up.
The view from the cable cars was incredible even with the rain still falling. Our pictures certainly aren’t what we hoped for, but the memories are still there of watching us climb in elevation with alpine lodges below us, mountain streams flowing from the melting snow, and even an occasional deer. Several times our view was obstructed by clouds but that didn’t dampen our enthusiasm for the moment. About halfway up the mountain we disembarked the cable car as that was as high as they were allowed. Our group decided to wait at least half an hour in hopes of continuing on but it was not to be, winds continued to be too strong. One thing that we had talked about before coming on the trip was arriving at the summit and drinking some Swiss hot chocolate so we celebrated our ascent to the midpoint with hot chocolate and it was all good!
Our descent was completely cloud covered with very few views; however we can still say we experienced the ascent to the Matterhorn. Ironically, the skies started to clear out and brighten as night began to fall and we had the clearest views of the surrounding mountains of our 2 night stay.
Our tour tomorrow takes us into Italy for a cruise on Lake Como and a visit to the town of Stresa before heading back into Switzerland and spending the night in St Moritz.