Thursday, 22 August 2013
Switzerland - Day 2
Soon all the road after a good breakfast, topped up the fuel tank with some of the Euros we had left on the Post Office card after the last trip to Majorca, always nice to be able to do that, it's as if you aren't spending real money! At this point we had covered probably about 420 miles and we have been pleasantly surprised by the fuel consumption of the X-Trail as even fully loaded we were still getting about 49 miles to the gallon which I reckon it's pretty good.
The journey from the hotel to our campsite in Kandersteg was excellent, the weather was lovely and because in the past we have passed this way in darkness it was brilliant to be able to see the snowcapped Alps as we approached our destination. As an added bonus on this section of the journey we suddenly found that we were approximately 50 miles closer to our destination than we had originally thought. The reason for this was that I had had the SatNav set to avoid toll roads, as all the Swiss motorways are toll roads the original distance indicated had been calculated based on using minor roads only. As soon as I switched the “avoid toll roads" option off the remaining distance to travel miraculously shrank by 50 miles.
Finally arrived in Kandersteg in the early afternoon on a beautiful warm and sunny day, Switzerland really is fantastic when the weather is like this and the mountains look at their absolute best. We soon got checked in, it was nice to see that the campsite is still being run by the same pleasant couple who still recognised us even though it has been a number of years since we were last year, they make us very welcome.
Managed to find a really nice pitch a little way above the reception area, the campsite is arranged in terraces and we reckon it would be nice to be a little higher up in the hope that this would mean that our camping area would have the sunshine for a little longer. We camped close to a few low trees which should provide a little shade should the weather remain hot.
Spent a little time putting up the tent and generally getting everything sorted out. Doing all this is quite a performance but definitely well worth it as we have a really excellent position and having free use of the vehicle, it being completely separate from our living accommodation, we will almost certainly not move from this spot for the duration of the holiday. It will be great to be able to just drive off to other towns or villages for a day now and then without having to disturb our living accommodation at all as one would have to do with a camper van. The arena and I have both pondered at length the pros and cons of caravans, camper vans and now camping and it will be really interesting to see how this trip works out as it should allow us to make better decisions about what we would like to do in the future.
The sun went down on our campsite at about 7 o'clock and the temperature has dropped quite rapidly but we were perfectly well prepared for this, the procedure will be reversed in the morning as soon as the sun comes up. It is always a bit of a surprise to see what a difference elevation makes in terms of how chilly it gets at night or in the mountains, hopefully we are adequately prepared, we'll know more about that in the morning!
So here, hopefully, begins a new experience and an excellent trip.