06 September 2015
We discuss possible hiking routes for today. Some are rejected because the new snow would make them more difficult. Finally, we choose an easy hike up Vadret da Morteratsch (Morteratsch Glacier) to the Chamanna da Boval (Boval Hütte), another SAC hut.
The weather is fine—perhaps a bit cool and breezy but it makes for comfortable hiking. At the start of the hike there is an interesting interactive sculpture. It’s purpose is to let visitors know that glaciers are not quiet; they make a variety of sounds. By striking the provided mallet against different parts of the sculpture you can produce sounds that attempt to mimic those of a glacier. It’s a very interesting piece of science and art.
The hike climbs along and near the lateral moraine of the glacier at a modest incline for much of the distance only becoming moderately steeper towards the end.
We have a long lunch with hot tea at the hut before leaving to begin the descent. On the way down, we search for a way to descend the lateral moraine to the glacier below but much of the moraine consists of unstable rock and dirt. We find a way, finally, but are now too far down valley of the glacier. In previous decades, however, there would still be ice here but this glacier has retreated several kilometers in the last 150 years. There are signed markers showing the location of the toe of the glacier from 1850 to present. The retreat is astonishing.
We are dropped off at the hotel and bid farewell to our companions as they must return home that evening.
We take another walk around the narrow streets of Pontresina before having dinner at our favorite restaurant. I’m not usually one to photograph my food but this Apfelstrudel is amazing!