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July 24th 2017

Over the Flüela Pass back to school

I finished my first day in school of the “Cuors intensif Vallader” (The intensive course Rhaetian roman language)! At 9 o’clock this morning I gathered along with over 130 “students” in the auditorium of the school building in Scuol, all eager to learn and improve our knowledge of the Vallader, spoken in this part of the Engadin. Before we were officially welcomed many of my last year’s fellow students met again – much to our delight. Once sitting in the classroom it soon became clear that for many of us (including myself) the basic knowledge of Vallader had rather ebbed away… This promises a lot of hard work over the coming five days with not much scope for hikes. Some consolation: at the moment the weather is not very inviting for outdoor adventures…

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Scuol: The school building in Scuol, February 27th 2017 – today it was raining…

Yesterday I travelled from Sargans to Scuol, not by the fast and direct way (by train through the Vereina railway tunnel), but with a detour over Davos and with the postal car over the Flüela Pass to Scuol. This is a trip I had wished to make for a long time! It was a extraordinary experience. Again I was fascinated by the fact that on the pass top (at 2.383m) there is another European watershed: the water on the Davos side runs through the Flüelabach into the Rhine (and the North Sea) and the water on the Lower Engadin side runs through the Susasca stream into the Inn (and through the Danube into the Black Sea). Also the fact that this Pass was already in use during the Bronze Age (a bronze spearhead dating from this period has been found) and that nowadays we can rather easily cross the pass on a well maintained road (built in 1867) from Davos to the Lower Engadin appeals to one’s imagination. The Flüela Pass is only opened during summer: since the opening of the Vereina railway tunnel in November 1999 it is no longer necessary to keep the Pass open during winter (the region is very prone to avalanges).

The area is unspoilt and magnificent. From the pass top into the direction of Susch there are a few side valleys to the Val Susasca Valley, of which the Val Grialetsch is very impressive, in its end Piz Grialetsch (3.131m) with its glacier.

Below an impression.

The following days I will be spending my time studying Vallader. But I will be back in short notice. A revair – see you later!