That was the weather forecast for today while preparing to leave for the Zermatt Heliport. A great day for a helicopter flight! Very excited too because I’ve never been ridden in a helicopter. Guess was waiting until today, when I’m in one of the most beautiful places on the Earth!
Each day that I’ve been in Zermatt, I see more and more of this amazing territory from different angles. First, by walking around the town, a few hikes, then the train ride up to Gornergrat, paragliding yesterday, and a helicopter ride today. The vistas today were jaw-dropping!
The helicopter ride was easy to arrange, just phoned to schedule a time, then arrived at the heliport this morning. Like with the paragliding, no forms to fill out, just pay and you’re all set.
While waiting for the helicopter, just saw a empty deck. (Very excited – waiting for the helicopter to arrive.)
Then saw a helicopter in the distance that swooped up to the deck and landed. Just like that! In like 10 seconds. I took the picture below after returning from the flight. (Didn’t have time before)
Was introduced to our pilot, Peter. It was just myself and one other passenger for the flight.
Again, I had faith that the pilot, who I knew was going to take good care of us and offer an unforgettable experience. (And I was right!)
After getting settled in, we took off – about as fast as he landed earlier. Before we knew it, we were up in the air and headed up the side of the nearest mountain.
View of Cockpit
Shadow of our Helicopter in Snow
Our flight plan was to visit the surrounding peaks, then return. I had no idea of what to expect during the flight. As I have mentioned before, we see the Matterhorn from Zermatt and a peak at of some of the surrounding mountains, but until you get some elevation, you don’t see the variety of snow-capped mountains. And we were off…
(Note: I just included a variety of pictures below – some are labeled and others are included just because of the amazing view.)
Starting to Climb
Footprints of Climbers in Snow
Even Peter was taking pictures of the Matterhorn! He said today was a perfect day for this flight and a great day for taking pictures. I agreed!
Top of Matterhorn
See the Climbers?
Italy Side (better view of climbers)
More climbers in above picture
View of Gornergrat
At this point, I stopped taking pictures and just enjoyed the ride. So much to take in!
A ride of a lifetime!
This museum is more than about the mountain, but describes the lives of those who lived here before the mountain made the town famous. Very hard lives back then, in very challenging weather – but through hard labor, teamwork, and ingenuity, made it work. Now have more appreciation for the remaining older homes (very small, compact, and useful). Also, a lot of the archaeological history of this area – very enlightening!
Old Homes in Zermatt
Zermatt still has a number of the older homes located within the town. Some are here and there – and some more are bunched together. Here is a link to learn more about these homes (rather than have me explain): http://www.zermatt.ch/en/Media/Attractions/Old-part-of-the-village
I walked around tonight and took pictures of a few of them. (Many sit o flat stone slabs balanced on stilts to keep out mice.)
Have my tickets for my return trip to Zurich – just staying the night there before heading off to Budapest on Thursday. This will be the third time staying at a Mövenpick Hotel (Amsterdam, Stuttgart, and now Zurich) – love them!
My hosts here in Zermatt have been excellent! Got me settled in and made me feel welcome. The flat has been perfect for me – compact, efficient, and quiet. I look forward to returning in January.
Just a Couple More Matterhorn Pictures
When out for my evening walk, found a couple of new views of the Matterhorn. Enjoy!