EAGER TO SEE THE EIGER
Made it to Interlaken, Switzerland and getting on my layers! I’m not in Hawai’i anymore!
The majestic mountain range in front of me constitutes one of the most emblematic sights of the Swiss Alps. The three mountains of the ridge are Jungfrau which translates to “virgin,” Mönch “The Monk,” and The Eiger “The Oger.”
Growing up in a family of mountaineers and hearing many a campfire about The Eiger, I have always dreamed of finally being in it’s powerful presence. The Eiger has the biggest north face in the Alps, made of rock and ice. Since 1935, at least sixty-four climbers have died attempting the north face, earning it the German nickname “Mordwand,” meaning “murder(ous) wall.” I’ll probably leave climbing the North Face of the Eiger until my next lifetime. 😉
CHOCOLATE WILL SAVE THE WORLD
I’m a CHOCOHOLIC and I got to meet the Swiss “Miss Willy Wonka,” Tatiana, and make my first chocolate bar at her irresistible candy land, The Funky Chocolate Club. ???? Next time you visit Interlaken, Switzerland you too can make you own chocolate there!
Surf’s up in Switzerland!
TEAMED UP WITH THE FRIST OLYMPIC SNOWBOARDER
I have to brag about my new friend! Ueli Kestenholz won the first ever Olympic Medal in Snowboarding, is a two time Snowboard World Champion, and a two times X-Games Gold medalist.
He also pioneered Speedriding/Speedflying accomplishing the first descent of Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau in one day AND the Matterhorn … AND he surfs big waves too! Thanks Ueli Kestenholz for showing me your world! Next time we’re bringing out the pink parachute.
My favorite mode of eco transportation in Switzerland is tobogganing off piste!
Both Zermatt and Saas-Fee are car-free towns and it’s incredible to zip around on small electric vehicles and know that no exhaust fumes are affecting our lungs or the earth!
Many mahalos to Niche Snowboards for making eco rides! My local friend Tiina and I had a ball on the Sonnett and the Minx 2016 models.
And it wouldn’t be a true Alison’s Adventure with out a few runs in an Odina Eco Bikini made from 25 recycled plastic bottles.
BRING GOOD GEAR!
As a Hawaii surfer girl, my #1 concern was staying warm in the alps! Thankful to Patagonia, Victorinox, Zeal Optics, Hestra Gloves, Keen Footwear, and Ridge Merino for keeping me warm and cozy!
Check out the awesome blog from Ridge Merino. I answered five questions on Living the Dream and Going Green!
MADLY IN LOVE WITH THE MATTERHORN:
When I was about 7 years old, living in a tiny tent with my wild parents in the most remote and exotic corners of the earth, I woke one morning and told my papa, “I want to quit traveling and go to Disneyland!” He was very confused and asked me why I wanted to go to Disneyland when my life was an adventure through REAL Disneyland? I replied: “I wanted to see the MATTERHORN!” Awhile later, I was overjoyed when my Grandma took me to Disneyland during a layover in California, but my childhood dreams were quickly crushed as I was thoroughly confused why the snow on the Matterhorn was fake, how you couldn’t ski mountain, and I was utterly terrified by the fiery eyed Yeti monster at the top!
Now, years later, I’m absolutely overwhelmed with awe and gratitude to be flying through fresh powder in the powerful presence of the real Matterhorn mountain in Zermatt, Switzerland!
Got to feel my inner Indiana Jones, or Jane, today during a Gorge Alpine adventure through an incredible canyon with cascading waterfalls and jagged monster icicles!
The few hour adventure ended with a 100ft rappel into the river surrounded by puffy powder islands!
VALENTINES DAY IN SWITZERLAND
This was a special Valentines Day for me as I fell in love all over again with the an old lover – THE MOUNTAINS! I was born during a blizzard on the floor of a log cabin high in the Rocky Mountains and spent most of my childhood trekking and skiing through the Andes and the Himalayas, but the day I met a surfboard, my life changed forever! Now I won’t let another winter go by without doing some serious snow-bonding. I’m head over heals for powder, literally, all the way down the mountain.
A photo posted by Alison Teal (@alisonsadventures) on
SAAS FEE – HOME OF FREDI THE GREAT!
Fantastic grand finale to my Switzerland Adventure: going off piste with the Swiss legend himself, Frederik Kalbermatten!
I got to fly through perfect powder while Fredi launched off of anything he could find around me and sometimes over me!
He is not only one of the best snowboarders in the world, but a loving father, dedicated husband, and entrepreneur in promoting sustainability alongside his wife Nicole with their company, Atreebutes.
Thank-you Switzerland, our new Swiss Ohana, and the snow gods for blessing us with an incredible adventure! With a soul full of love, a head full of magical memories, and a tummy full of chocolate, I’m excited to now share with the world the Swiss secrets to peace, happiness and achieving your dreams!