1 December 2016 – Mileage: 35
Something told me, that there will be a lot of road walking. So, I chose not to wear the Cascadia’s, instead I opted for a pair of Asics Gel Kinsey, an asphalt shoe. Big mistake.They are way too big for my foot. They gave me enormous blisters. At least their damping works better for me than the Cascadia’s.
I start in the morning on 9 o’clock. The first 7 miles are my running path, nothing to report about it. Thick fog until after Adliswil – no wonder, the sun never shines in Adliswil.
I was afraid, that I would get cold in my clothes. That was the biggest success of this hike. My clothing doesn’t work. It performs. Never I was out for 12 hours in temperatures near or below freezing point hiking with more than 3.3 mph. Never did I get a comfier feeling.
My new daypack arrived yesterday, I did chose the 35-liter variant, you already know the brand. I bought one of this hilarious platypus bladders, complete with a hose and of course I fill in 2 liters of this obnoxious sports drink – I use only one liter. These things are impossible to clean if you are not a big fan of chemicals. Although it is equipped with silver ions to stay clean.
A big Redbull and a huge cold coffee provide the additional load and make sure I pollute enough plastic and aluminum into the world. I carried the Redbull 23 miles. And I had again to much food. I carry trail mix since four outings. Never eat of it. To avoid being forced to walk near the busy road all the time on a small pavement where there are hundreds of cars parked and sometimes trucks I try to reach Horgen over a hill. This are some 4 extra miles and a lot of height but I don’t care.
After 7 and a half hours I am in Rapperswill. This is a little bit more than half the way as the lake is somehow shaped like a quarter moon and I followed the longer side down. Even on the first of December there are enough open public bathrooms on the lake. I can even allow myself to skip those where you must pay. The most fascinating one is in Horgen. Everything is electrically steered. You still must do your business yourself but otherwise you just must touch a lot of buttons that turn from green into red. Everything is at least bomb proof. People are still bathing in the lake.
Although I can utilize my phone with my gloves through the liveproof casing, I can’t feel the switches on my headlamp with the gloves. It’s a problem, as you need to switch from redlight when in towns or near houses to the white beam when outside. You must switch all the time.
I did five hours of night hiking. Once I came across two horse riders. I just can’t identify them soon enough as horse riders, because their horses are not visible from a distance. As they come closer, all their horse equipment reflects, they even have small lights mounted. When your eye has no points for reference it’s extremely difficult to estimate the distance. So, I was thinking these were joggers and far away. There horses got irritated. I jump into the field, pointing the beam down and I wait. There horses are no longer afraid and the riders don’t seem angry. Lucky me.
I need other headphones. Mine keep to jump out of my ears. There is a mechanical problem with my eyewear and the hangers.
I listen to Irish rebel songs. You can say what you want but I do find the resolution of the conflict in Ireland fascinating. Of course, it would have been even better not to start a conflict in the first place or to keep it on nonviolent ways. They were shooting at each other but they kept a sense of humor all the times. There were people murdered under the definitions of the Geneva conventions as they were ambushed by the SAS and could have been arrested easily instead. The bombings the IRA did carry out were also not 200 % complaint with the Hague Conventions and sometimes incredibly cruel. Still, no comparison to the so called Islamic state. They seem to do a competition for the biggest atrocities and the most barbaric acts mankind can think of. Putting people in cages and burn them or submerge the cage. The conflict parties in Ireland talked to each other even through the biggest bomb blasts. And they found a way of living without killing each other. Former Terrorists got back into normal life or serve now as elected lawmakers. Nobody got their wish list fully through. But they were successful in moving the conflict to where it belongs. Into the parliaments, discussions and into voting. Away from the street where it harmed innocents and bystanders. Some people will find these songs offensive, but again some of them are funny. Like “my old man’s a Provo” or “my little Armalite“.
Here in Switzerland we have our own homegrown form of Al-Qaeda. They do not murder people like their role models, but they use Islamic religion as a tool to try to shock people in order to get prominent and into media. If you have a closer look to these people, you will soon find out, that they are still disorientated and they didn’t know what to do to give their lives a sense. So, they dress up like Muslims, read the Quran, fall short in interpreting it and they talk BS like “stoning a woman to death is part of my religion”. There are thousands of Muslims in Switzerland. 99 % of them don’t want to have anything to do with these morons. Like a Christian with common sense would like to distance himself from a Christian fundamentalist who kills doctors, because the doctors assisted in abortions.
I bailed in Männedorf, after 35 miles. My legs, knees, hips, ankles are in perfect shape, nothing hurts, I feel that I could walk some 30 miles more. I just don’t want to get more blisters.
I will come back to this route soon. It is 9 o’clock in the evening, temperatures are below freezing. On the railway station, there are two young men from African descent. Probably refugees from eastern Africa. An older man walks in circles around them. They are dressed extremely thin but I know that in Ethiopia and Somalia the temperature can drop below freezing as well. They don’t shiver and they seem to be happy. I keep an eye on the old man, ready to intervene, if he says something bad to the refugees.