蓝湖和险峰 Bright blue lakes and rugged mountains
Jöriseen lakes in the Silvretta Alps, Switzerland
Today we're exploring a place of otherworldly beauty: the Jöriseen, a group of alpine lakes near Davos, Switzerland. On sunny days, the lakes glow an ethereal blue, contrasting with the dark, jagged Silvretta Alps that encircle them. The sunlight is reflected in the water by 'rock flour'—silt-sized rock particles generated from the grinding of bedrock by glaciers.
The Silvretta Alps sit across the Swiss-Austrian border and are themselves surrounded by glaciers in an area known as the 'Blue Silvretta.' If you want to enjoy these stunning views up close, you'll have to work for it. Bring your best hiking boots, plenty of water, and some strong legs.
托尔金笔下瑞文戴尔的原型 Tolkien's Rivendell inspiration
Lauterbrunnen Valley in the Swiss Alps
For Tolkien Reading Day, we're visiting the Lauterbrunnen Valley in the Swiss Alps, which is believed to have inspired the Elven sanctuary of Rivendell in J.R.R. Tolkien's novels 'The Lord of the Rings' and 'The Hobbit.' Like Tolkien's mythical Elf settlement, Lauterbrunnen Valley has a bit of storybook appeal, with an unusually narrow valley floor hemmed in by steep Alpine cliffs and dotted with numerous waterfalls. The valley remains a popular tourist destination.
The Tolkien Society organized the first Tolkien Reading Day in 2003 to celebrate and promote his works. They selected March 25 as it is the day that the Dark Lord Sauron was defeated, and the Black Tower destroyed in 'The Lord of the Rings.' Tolkien's writing continues to provide fodder various entertainment forms, with Amazon's 'Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power' debuting in 2022.
Berchtesgaden Alps, Germany
Rising out of the Bavarian mists near Germany’s border with Austrian are the Berchtesgaden Alps, which surround the market town of the same name. This pristine mountain landscape is popular with mountaineers and hikers, who have plenty of peaks to choose from. Berchtesgaden National Park, established in 1978, accommodates nine mountain ranges over 81 square miles, including the dominant Watzmann, one of Germany’s tallest mountains which reach 8,901ft (2,713m) at its highest point.
Berchtesgaden is the only Alpine national park in Germany and protects a varied landscape including deep forests, rugged cliffs, and glaciers as well as green valleys and pastures – complete with diverse plants and wildlife. Also hidden somewhere beneath that thick cloud lies the emerald-green Königssee, one of Germany’s highest and most photogenic lakes, nestled within steep mountain walls.
A walk by the lake
Surrounded by gigantic peaks and located in Ramsau at the foot of the Reiter-Alm, Hintersee Lake has fascinated many landscape artists and poets.
The most beautiful footpath to the lake leads from Ramsau through the Zauberwald (Enchanted Forest), and along a wild mountain stream. Take a walk on the theme trail leading around the lake and presenting information on the romantic-period painters of the 19th century. The lake has provided the setting for many an Alpine movie.
A very precious river
Autumn has settled here on the banks of the Chéran, a river of the Northern Prealps, a small region of Savoy, France. Nicknamed "the pearl of the Bauges" because of its remarkable character and the beauty of the landscapes it crosses, this mountain stream is conducive to many activities, including one you don't expect!
Gold miners have been visiting the Chéran since the middle ages – the 24-carat river known as one of the purest in the world - however the inhabitants of the region are confident that there will be no gold rush here.
Mountain mists over Bavaria
If the forecast in Bavaria calls for 'nebel'—you'll know that means fog. In modern German, the word for 'November' is 'November.' But an older German term for this month was 'Nebel-mond' which translates to English as 'fog month'—it's the time of the year when fog is most likely to roll in. In some parts of the world the topography and local climate make fog a regular feature of the weather, especially during certain times of the year. That's called 'fog season.' San Francisco has a fog season. Tampa, Florida, does too. Is there a fog season where you live?