Swiss NP — genuine mountains

(June 2018)

This is not the highest fragment of the Swiss Alps – because the peaks rise here barely just barely over 3,000 meters. But this particular fragment in the south-eastern corner of the country, accessible only thanks to the amazing Rhaetian railways (about which later), is the only national park in Switzerland — a country where mountains are nearly everywhere. The only and one of the oldest in Europe, because it was founded in 1914. The only one, probably not because the Swiss do not like nature protection (they do it in many places in many other ways) – perhaps the only one, because nothing else has a chance to match it.

Because valleys and slopes are wild here. There are not many trails. In contrast to the large amount of emptiness of space and terrain, this gives the impression of genuineness. A genuine wind, a genuine murmur of genuine water in a genuine stream, a genuine gully of loose genuine stones, a genuine view far into a genuine valley where there is nothing but genuine mountains.

I could only have one day here, but what a day it was. A steep trail took me again and again to the edge of the abyss over a huge valley, which it showed revealing it from the forest, and finally led me slightly above its upper edge traversing the mighty slopes of Murtarol and finally falling to a bridge on the stream to reach the only mountain shelter in this area. I drank black strong cold coffee there, surprised that I could afford it. And a quick return this time through a protrusion on the ridge of Murtarol called Bellavista (2039 meters above sea level), which name is also real – because, really, the view of the characteristic series of mountains forming the Engadine Valley will remain in my eyes probably forever.