Cycling Schwyz to Zug View back to Grosser Mythen

For a bit of a stretch of the legs, Jules and I jumped on a train with our bikes and headed to Schwyz for a fairly gentle cycle ride. The chosen route was the second stage of route 51, from Schwyz to Zug.

After a bit of hassle buying the ticket on the train (with the conductor waiting slightly impatiently, we made it to Schwyz. We stopped in the centre of town for lunch (we didn't start very early) and suitably refreshed we headed off towards Zug, following route 51.

The first half of the route wasn't the most picturesque. Although the views of the mountains were good, the route follows the main road for quite a long way, which was a bit noisy and not the most pleasant. From Arth the route continues along the side of the lake, sometimes on a dedicated cycle-path, but often on the road without a dedicated cycle-lane which meant that the cars came a little close at times.

All in the 28 km took us 1hr30, with no real breaks along the way. Given the amount of good cycling around I don't think we'll be rushing back to this route.

Cycling Zug to Zürich - August

View over the Zurichsee from above PfaeffikonFor a slightly longer cycle ride, Jules and I headed to Zug to start a two day route back to Zürich. We broke the trip down into two days - the first from Zug over to Einsieldn following route #99 and the second day from Einsieldn to Zurich, following routes #9 and #66 via Rapperswill.

We started in the pretty old town of Zug - our speedy progress slightly impeded by the Saturday market, then climbing steadily out of Zug, following the well marked Herzroute 99. We stopped for a coffee near the top of the Zuggerburg, and had lunch in Unteraegeri, at restaurant Seefeld, which was perfectly pleasant, with nice views of the lake.

After lunch continued climbing steadily on the aptly name panorama weg, with wonderful views of the mountains, stopping for a break at a little cafe near Altmatt with nice views, but the most wasps we'd ever seen in one place. After the break we set off for one last climb (felt like we'd been climbing all day) to drop down into Einsieldn, and to complete the surprisingly tough 40 km in about 6 hours including breaks.

We stayed in the St Georg hotel in Einsieldn - perfectly pleasant 3*, and had a wander around the town on Saturday evening and the monestary on Sunday morning.

On Monday we headed off on route #9, across the Sihlsee - with very pretty views to the mountains - before heading on to climb over the Etzel and then dropping down to Pfaeffikon and over to Rapperswil. We stopped on the waterfront for lunch, which was very hot - 30 degrees in the shade and much more in the sun. Suitably refreshed we headed back on route #66, stopping at our favourite bench outside of Meilen. We arrived back at about 4pm, having been on the road for about 5 hours (including breaks) for the 55km..

Cycling GrifenSee & ZurichSee - July View over the ZurichSee from above Meilen

Looking for a good ride a bit closer to home, Jules and I headed out to do a route around the GrifenSee and along the side of the ZurichSee.

The route was a bit of a mish-mash, following route #29 around Dubendorf, along the side of the GrifenSee before heading over the hill to Meilen and back along the #66 to Zürich. Overall the route was OK, mostly on quiet roads, with about an even mix of off-road and busier sections. There were a couple of hills on route - the largest being the ridge to Meilen, but the total height gained/lost wasn't very much for a day out.

The route was about 32 miles in total, and took us about 2hrs45 of pedaling, plus a couple of stops for food and drink. It was quite hot which meant that we were going a bit slower than we might otherwise have done, but we can't really complain about that!

Eglisau to Zürich - July Cycling along the path next to the Glatt river

With a lovely day forecast and keen to try out Jule's new bike, we set off to Eglisau to cycle along the Glatt back to Zürich.

The route was very easy to follow (once we found the turn off to route #29 along the Glatt) and we made good progress along the banks of the river. The path was pretty good – tarmac or hard packed gravel for most of the route, well signed and without any notable ascents. The path is somewhat shaded by trees for a lot of the time, so we didn't get too hot in the sun. We made such good progress that we decided to turn off the Glatt at Ruemlang to head over to Katzensee to see the lake. We did a circuit of the lake and stopped for a drink in the baden to recover our strength for the last leg back to town. The new bike worked pretty well, and was perfect for that kind of cycling.

All in all the route was slightly over 35 miles and we spent 3hrs10 pedaling plus about an hour for breaks and rests. Frozen water bottles were a great idea for the day, as the temperatures got above 30C at times..

Cycling Zurichsee - June View over Zurichsee

With blatant disregard for the forecast temperatures (over 30C), Timmy-boy and I headed out for a quick lap of the Zurichsee after work one evening.

The plan had been to follow route 66 from the foot of the lake to Rapperswill, then cross over the dam (route #9) and then follow route #32 back to town, but like all good plans, this one didn't survive very long. We lost the route 66 somewhere around Kuesnacht and ended up just cycling along A17 instead, which was fine with a good cycle path. Crossing over the dam was fine, but we lost the route 32 in Pfaffikon and ended up cycling up an unnecessary hill on the A8 before realising our mistake and heading back to Wollerau. We picked up the route #32 again for about 100 yards before losing it. After that we dropped down to pick up the A3 back to town - at least that way were weren't going to get lost again!

All in all the route ended up being about 70km, and took us the best part of 3hrs30, including stops for drinks and to cool down a bit. It was a good, fun ride, but quite long for an after-work trip.

Cycling Tuerlersee - June View over Tuerlersee in the sunshine with reeds in the foreground

For a bit of a trip out, Jules, Diana and I headed off for a cycle ride around Uetliberg. The plan had been to follow a route from bikemap.net from Zürich via Waldegg, Buchenegg, Sihltal and back to Zürich.

As with all good plans, this one quickly went out of the window. We did stick with it until Aumueli, but then the appeal of going to see Tuerlersee convinced us to carry on along route 51. We stopped at the Tuerlersee for a bite of lunch and a quick swim for yours truly before carrying on. We decided not to follow the busy road back up to Adliswill, and instead took a fairly long, off road route up to Albishorn and then along the ridge back to Adliswill. If we'd known how much extra effort this would be, we probably wouldn't have taken that route - the going was very hard up the hill, and along the ridge was not cycle-able in many places so it turned into a bit of a slog. Still we had a good day, albeit with a fairly serious mechanical problem on Jules' bike necessitating the removal of the front dérailleur!

All in it was a 28 miles, with 2,500ft ascent/descent and we were pedaling for about 3hrs30 which doesn't quite tell the full story of how much effort it was!

Rheinfall - May Side view of the Rheinfall waterfall

With a lovely day forecast, Jules and I headed to the Rheinfall near Schaffhausen for a look at the waterfall and a gentle cycle ride around the local villages.

The journey there was pretty easy - we took the direct train (which was a good plan, because a lot of other people had the same idea), and arrived in Schaffhausen late morning. From there we picked up the route 752 from  veloland.ch. The route itself is about 20km of pretty easy cycling through the local villages, with only one slight navigational challenge around Neurheinau - quickly corrected with a mobile phone and a local map.

We stopped for lunch at the somewhat touristy and overpriced Restaurant Park am Rheinfall, but we sat outside and had a lovely view of the waterfall whilst eating lunch, so we can't complain very much. All in all it was a very pleasant potter about, briefly crossing into the danger zone, and a relaxing day out.