So we woke up at 4:00am to head out to Zermatt. It should be about a ten hour drive and then we take a taxi or train into the town... so we loaded up the car and headed out.
Bet all you Californians didn't know that San Bernadino was so close to Zurich!
We brought our friend Heidi with us to help out with the kids, so we were totally excited to drive through Heidiland.
We drove through Lichtenstein. There wasn't much to see, but we were excited to say we have been there!
"Hey! We're in Lichtenstein!"
Once we entered Switzerland, the GPS crashed. Hmm... should have taken that as a sign of things to come, but we reset it and kept on going. Chris may look a little frustrated in this pic, but he held it together surprisingly well considering...
There was so much snow that even though it looked beautiful, we couldn't enjoy most of the view because there were too many clouds.
Hmmm... are we going to be able to make it through?
When we looked out the windshield and saw nothing but white we figured we were in trouble. About an hour away and the road was blocked... time to turn back! Unfortunately, the GPS would not find us an alternate route, and the google maps had sent us the same way, so we weren't really sure where we were going to go...
Everyone was so done with the car, so we stopped to have lunch. Elora thoughtfully brought her map so that "I can look at my map and help us find out which way to go!"
The waitress told us about a train we could put our car on to get over the mountain, and it would be leaving in about 45 minutes. So Amy and Heidi were practicing their "horking it down" maneuvers so they would be ready when the food came.
That is the biggest cowbell I have ever seen. They must have bigger cows in Switzerland.
Amy excited to read her German menu!
So we tried to go get on the train, and found that it was full, the next one not coming for another 5 hours. So we turned back, drove around through Zurich and tried to get the GPS to find a different route. Which it didn't. So we bought a map, and Karen got to navigate us to a different tunnel that had a train for us to drive our car onto. We are all sort of out of practice with the good old fashioned way of traveling, but in the end, it worked out better for us!
Hanging out in the car while the train drove us through the tunnel. We were all so done with the car, but once we hit this tunnel and knew we were close, it rallied our spirits a bit! To everyone's credit, there was surprisingly little whining and crying, even though it definately would have been justified considering...
Finally we reached Tasch, last stop for cars heading to Zermatt. The man working at the taxi station gave Amy a free drink.
We all loaded into the taxi for a 25 minute ride up the mountain into Zermatt.
Then we loaded into an electric taxi. Cars are not permitted in Zermatt, except for the electric taxis that drive through the town. We headed to the rental apartment...
And whew! Finally made it... at 7:30pm. What a day! We cooked some pasta, which Ollie enjoyed while sitting on the floor in the kitchen. The kids were so happy to be out of the car that they ran around the apartment giggling for two hours before we could get them to calm down enough to go to bed. Not the most promising start to our vacation, but at least we got here in one piece, and didn't forget to bring any vital items...