Sleeping in straw: Swiss trail number 99.

Author:Welti, Rene
Position:Off the beaten track: swiss trail number 99
 
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The sunrise from the family Ziegler farmhouse window gave me one of those "it's-great-to-be-alive" mornings. Overlooking Lake Uri with Fluclen, Alfdorf and the Uri Alps in the distance, the barn is located along the signposted trail on National Swiss Path number 99; an easy 45-minute scenic summit trail hike South of Seeltsberg at 800m / 2400 ft. I could smell the dew from the alpine flower green pastures in front of me and heard the groans of the traditional Swiss brown cows as they were being herded into the barn next to my bed of straw. This scenic central Swiss region, scenic hike and overnight stay in a farm house, is a great way to combine a beautiful and easy hike with a fourth generation Swiss alp farm family. It is something anyone can do. The place is easily accessible with public transportation as you just have to plan and research the Lucerne boat, funicular and Swiss local postal bus schedules.

The panoramic national "Swiss Path" ("Weg Der Schweiz") on the sign posted trail number 99, created in 1991 as one of the "700 Years" Switzerland projects, identifies the historic beginnings of Switzerland. The 35 km trail recognizes each of the Cantons making up Switzerland. A round granite stone marks the date each Canton entered the Swiss Confederation representing each Canton. The distance between each cantonal stone marking is proportional to the Canton's population, and the order is determined when the canton joined the Swiss federation. One literally walks through the history of the country.

Close to nature family's

In this neck of the woods, I recently experienced sleeping in the Ziegler converted barn with a touristic group from London. To prepare, I wanted to know how this sleeping in straw thing really works. On the Ziegler family's website, I read that wool blankets and sheets were provided. Thus, I knew there was something on-site available to cover the straw, and that it was my choice to bring along a sleeping bag or a linen cover. Since I wasn't sure if a linen cover was going to keep me warm enough, I decided to pack my own sleeping bag, just in case. When I arrived at the Zieglers, I was pointed in direction of the recently converted barn where the sleeping stalls were located. I walked inside and found a perfect spot. I threw my blankets over the straw that made for a nice flat bed. I then unpacked my pack, threw my sleeping bag over the wool blankets and had my sleeping...

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