Into the Heart of the Alps

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July 2013

Most Recent Entries

Strolling Mont Blanc's Balcony, July 7, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 10, 2013

Our final day of trekking, and the final day of real vacation (the next two days will be transition/travel days). I'd say our trek designer saved the best for last, except it's all been pretty fantastic.

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A Most Perfect Day, Thanks to Random Kindness, July 6, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 10, 2013

Today's trekking instructions started with about 2500' of uphill, lots of it on roads and through inhabited areas, just to get to the beginning of the good stuff -- an optional loop that led to spectacular views in a different direction than we'd seen so far. No cable car or ski lift options to gain some of the altitude. We were not happy, because after this many days of long trekking hours and steep ups and downs, my hips, knees and stamina are no longer at their best. The high country part of the day seemed out of reach for me.

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Improved Weather Today, July 5, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 09, 2013

The trekking route for today was not our favorite -- a lot of road walking, a destination (Lac Vert, Green Lake) that was not too special, hot sweaty conditions. That said, the clouds have totally lifted and when we did have views through the forest cover, they were pretty spectacular. Also, the architectural variety walking through little hamlets created more of a cultural experience than is usual on a wilderness hike.

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Trekking is Not All About The View, July 4, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 08, 2013

There may have been fireworks in the sky celebrating Independence Day, but we couldn't have seen them anyway. Awoke again to low clouds and misting rain. The rain had stopped by the time we started hiking, but the clouds played games with us all day. By the time we finally got to our night's lodging, the sun and views were out.

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When It Rains ... , July 3, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 08, 2013

The rain showed its many personalities today -- raining steadily when we woke up, drizzling and misting throughout most of our hiking day, pouring down during our final slog back into town and up to our lodgings, and finally turning into fog as the evening lengthened.

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Trekking the "On Foot" Way is Almost Easy, July 1-2, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 03, 2013

Yesterday was a transition day. Drove about two hours from Aosta, Italy to Annecy, France, through the Mont Blanc tunnel. Returned the rental car (and LadyTomTom, much to Bob's chagrin as he tried to find his way back from the gas station to the car rental place without her). Took the train to St. Gervais les Bains, and the luxury trek treatment started. We were picked up by a "taxi", a lovely local lady who will be driving our luggage from hotel to hotel as we hike every day. (BTW, our Mont Blanc trek is supported by On Foot Holidays, a British tour company.)

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Both Mountains Were Out, June 29-30, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 02, 2013

We arrived into the Aosta Valley, the Italian side of Mont Blanc, in very low cloud cover and rain. Really, there are huge alpine peaks ringing this valley??!! Spent the afternoon shopping for trek-related essentials and doing laundry. Once the rain was done, we walked into the old town (literally walking through the old Roman gate to get into the old town) and became part of the lively Saturday night shopping and eating out scene. Aosta has particularly impressed us with the seamless integration of old and new architecture.

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In the 'Hood With Brangelina, June 26-28, 2013

Written by: Michele Straube | Date Posted: Jul 01, 2013

These three days in the Valpolicella region have been an off-the-beaten-path adventure that turned out to be filled with wonder-ful moments (as these types of adventures usually are). And because we are generally away from tourist crowds (certainly from American tourists), it's been most relaxing.

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