thanks to Victorinox and React and many supporters like Heimgatner, Intersport Metzger, Velothek, Schweizer Jugendherbergen, Flyer, individuals and failies, we have reached the first 12 canton peaks in a first phase after cycling about 1000 km.
Note: In the last days winter came in the mountains. After 12 TOPs we take a break until there is more snow for the higher peaks. As soon as the avalanche situation allows it comes the second phase to the remaining 14 TOPs by ski.
4 more TOPs: SO+JU+NE+GE:
After spending the night with Joëlle and her mother Brigitte Ruf in Rickenbach, there was a surprise for Dario before we headed up into the Jura heights. The road to the highest mountain of the canton of Solothurn, the Hasenmatt with 1444 meters above sea level was partly so stony that we had to push the bikes. On the summit we then enjoyed the birthday cake.
For the next TOP, the highest point of the Canton Jura, we had to go far down again into the valley to Moutier and then again up the next mountain range to Mont Reimeux 1302m. Gabi Bolliger accompanied us to Biel and her friend Guido was already waiting for us with an excellent dinner. The solar catamaran is also located in Biel. Another TOP example. We knew it from the TOPtoTOP Climate Solution Award. As an ambitious fisherman, Vital was in heaven as we passed by a fishing store.
The next day we got reinforcement from Christina Hartmann up to the highest point of the canton of Neuchâtel. The highest point is somewhat in front of the summit of the Chasseral, this due to the run of the cantonal border. On the Chasseral there is another TOP example. In the center of landscape protection it is vividly shown how we should deal more sustainably with our landscape.
From the Chasseral we went down to Le Landeron to the famous violin maker Claude Labet, who also made violins in New York and Rome. Sabine did an interview and learned many life lessons and his idea of sustainability. A highlight was then the overnight stay in the youth hostel in Avanches. We felt very comfortable and strengthened thanks to the fantastic breakfast.
In heavy rain we reached the Zimmermann farm family in Cuarnens. We had last seen them 20 years ago, when we were allowed to stay overnight with them on Swiss TOPtoTOP 1.0. At that time, farmer Daniel told me that he wanted to become energy self-sufficient. He proudly told us about his solar system on the roof. But also about the challenge to build a 10KW wind turbine. He researched for a long time and overcame many bureaucratic hurdles in these years. Now the wind turbine should be here since July. But it was transported overland via Russia and not by sea. By chance, after years, the wind turbine arrived by truck the next morning before our departure!
In the same region in Lucens is also Isover, which supplied us with insulation material for the TOPtoTOP Arctic Base.
The approx. 80 km from Zimmermann’s to Geneva was often downhill. Our friend Christian is a dentist and invited us to stay with him. When we arrived, he just checked all our teeth. He has three horses and lives among other things in a circus wagon on a large meadow, so to speak a green oasis in the city of Geneva. He accompanied us with his special bicycle, in which he also transports his dog, to the highest point in the canton of Geneva, about 40 km return. This is the border stone 141 to France in the municipality of Moniaz. We had brief contact with the residents of the house next door 20 years ago. It was a nice reunion and today they hardly wanted to let us move on.
We followed the Lake Geneva. Thanks to Andri’s good reaction there was no accident. Many migratory birds gathered in the vineyards. Like clouds they darken the sky. From Morges we went up again to the family of Irmela Mantel. She and her children have sustainably rebuilt an old farmhouse. Our children loved the many animals and we loved the organically grown goodies. We continued through hilly terrain towards Vanil Noir, the highest point in the canton of Friburg.
In the evening we looked for a place to stay in Bulle and decided to sleep over at Annemarie’s place. Later we learned of the death of Dario’s father. It was a shock and the next morning we set off to see him…. (see previous blog).
In the last days winter came in the mountains. After 12 TOPs we take a break until there is more snow for the higher peaks. As soon as the avalanche situation allows it comes the second phase to the remaining 14 TOPs by ski. We plan to continue in December and use the remaining time to help the start of a solar project in Africa as a follow up of the project we realised before.