Friday, October 7, 2016

Friday 7 October - Meiringen and Sherlock Holmes.

Which ever way we choose to go Meiringen is a long way around.  We went out from Zurich changing trains at Bern, Spietz and Interlaken Ost.  The transfer times were reasonable yet it took us four minutes to walk down the train at Bern to find first class.  These trains are enormous. There was a change of gauge at Interlaken to the meter gauge Zentralbahn which has been completely re-equipped with new trains in the last couple of years.  Most of the new trains are equipped with the Riggenbach rack system.
One of the new Zentralbahn trains.  This one is not rack equipped and is restricted to working between Interlaken and Meiringen where the line is level.  It is also equipped with wheel scrubbers to clean off the aviation spirit residue from the jet fighters which will otherwise accumulate and affect the signal system
At Meiringen we took the Meiringen Innertkirchenbahn which only has one car and provides a basic service every half hour.  They will be getting new trains in a couple of years.  Much of the line has been relaid and reballasted.  There is talk of building a tunnel for trains and power lines through to Goschenen or Andermatt.
The MIB has only one car.
The journey to Innertkirchen only takes about ten minutes so we went out to the end and returned to the station in the outskirts of Meiringen where it was a short walk to the lower station of the funicular railway up to the Reichenbach Falls. The funicular was the easy part.  You can see the falls from the platform close to the station but there is a steep path, with many steps and rough in places, to get a better view of the falls and the surrounding countryside. Paul made it all the way to the top and I managed most of the climb - at least to a really good viewing platform.  The Swiss people must be really fit.  Couples with young families were marching up, the grown ups with rucksacks and many with baby carriers as well.

These are the falls where Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty met their deaths.
Meiringen with the river Aare running across from right to left.  The water is a muddy white

The weather was good with a fair amount of sun and the views were excellent.

We went back down and took the little train the one stop into Meiringen and then had to decide how to get back to Zurich.  We briefly considered taking the Post bus from Innertkirchen to Goschenen and then train down the Gotthard Pass but eventually decided to take the Zentralbahn over the rack to Luzern and SBB back to Zurich.  There was just enough time to visit a model railway shop close to the Luzern station where we laughed at some of the prices but Paul managed to find some Swiss detail items.

This is our last day at Zurich. Tomorrow we transfer to a hotel in Neuchatel.

Click here to see pictures taken in the Meiringen area

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