2nd of August 2017 - 10:40hrs - I am where I wanted to be!
I am on top of Bella Tola in the Swiss Alps, 3025m above sea level.
Since last year, I had thought about getting a bit higher while hiking. I am not a climber and not a skier, but I still wanted to get above my "magic line" of 3000m. Therefore I read a lot about recommendations which mountains are "hikeable" and I also bought a book with a lot of hikes in higher areas. (I bought a German book, you can shop it here.*)
I chose my mountain and I started to work on it.
The day and night before...
As I had chosen Bella Tola in the Swiss Alps to be "my" mountain, I drove to Vissoie in the Val d'Anniviers on the 1st of August 2017.
On this evening we spent the night in our tent on the beautiful Camping d'Anniviers. This campsite is tiny and simple, but a lovely and calm place and the ideal spot to spent a few nights in the canton Valais.
In addition to the fact that there was a firework (Swiss National Holiday) and as I was super excited I slept not really good and was awake at 6:30 in the morning. But my hiking companions were ready - so we could start early!
(By the way: I was not hiking alone but with my two favourite hiking companions: Felix and Ioma.)
The actual hike
We started off a bit lazy by cable car - simply because the hike was supposed to be a 5hrs hike and we didn't want to add a lot more hours by hiking from 1600m to 2100m first. (Additional this would mean to have a total elevation gain of ~1425m one way.)
On top we first had a delicious breakfast including boiled eggs, wonderful dark bread and Swiss cheese. :D (I just loooooove breakfast!)
The actual hike started from 2189m above sea level and took us gently in big curves up to the Cabane Bella Tola. From here we crossed a beautiful high plateau always leading a big uphill.
There were some cows on the trail, but there was enough distance in between us, and as I kept Ioma close to me we didnt' have any problems!
After the plateau the trail got a bit steeper and the landscape changed. Less grass, mre stones - in total landscape was rougher and it started to look a bit like a foreign planet. Around two hours after the start I crossed my "magic line" and reached 3000m. This feeling was already awesome, but there were still some minutes to go to the mountain top!
The moment when I finally reached it was amazing: I felt strong, proud, happy, a little tired but all over all: I was overwhelmed by the fact that I had settled this goal for me and reached it!
So, obviously, I have a new goal by now: get to the second summit of 3000+ and the third, and the fourth...
Finishing the hike
I love to have picnics during the hike. Just stopping in the middle of nowhere having some cheese, nuts and bread. Maybe fruit or cereal bars... This is just perfect!
Another great choice is going to the alpine huts and having a big portion of whatever is on the menu.
At the end of the Bella Tola-Hike I walked back towards the small restaurant (Cabane Bella Tola) I had passed on the way up and they had wonderful home made tarte, so I just sat in the sunshine, relaxed my feet and enjoyed chocolate and apple tarte :)
Is there any better way to finish a hike?
I don't think so...