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A retreat before the restart: a few days in the On Mountain Hut

French adventure enthusiasts 'Les Others' love telling stories of new experiences found off the beaten path. In a guest blog, they discuss their recent trip to the On Mountain Hut and share some stunning photos too.

  

Summer has flown by without us noticing. We’ve hardly had time to enjoy the long days, the terraces filling up with people and the glasses emptying and yet it’s already time to get back to work. But before letting ourselves slide into autumn, we wanted to take refuge in nature - one last time.

 

The invitation from our friends at On came at just the right moment. Last year, we crossed Switzerland - their playing field - following the Via Alpina trail. This year, would not be a record distance but instead a short break in the form of a retreat in a special place: the On Mountain Hut.

 

Perched above the small town of Maloja near Saint Moritz, the birthplace of On, the Hut is a cabin designed by their staff - proof of their unique expertise in using the materials of our Swiss cousins. The ideal place for a breath of fresh air before going back to the daily commute.

  

Back to the Source: The On Mountain Hut
On was born in the Swiss Alps. This summer, we are going back. Back to some of the most beautiful, challenging and rewarding natural landscapes on this planet. Back to the source.
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Onboard the red rack railway, we keep our noses pressed to the glass as we cross viaducts, winding through alpine pastures. It arrives right on time, of course.

 

We start our journey in the valley under a continuous sheet of rain. Amazingly, the downpour stops before we even reach the path. It is a two-hour climb to reach our palace. The air is cool and our legs warm up quickly. The only sound is that of our footsteps. We breathe.

   

   

Finally, we see it. Or is it a mirage? The metal-clad On Mountain Hut blends harmoniously into its surroundings. All the materials used here are recyclable and electricity is provided by solar panels. At the end of the season, the Hut will disappear without a trace. A wood-burning stove and a large bay window make us look forward to the evening ahead – staring face-to-face with the summits.

 

As soon as we have dropped off our things, we set out to explore the area. The mountain range here can almost be considered “the roof of Europe” – as the water here ends up in the Black Sea, the Mediterranean and the North Sea. We follow a ridge with views over the whole valley. Far below us are the church towers of Swiss villages. Opposite, a glacier continues its slow descent, ending up in an immense turquoise lake. We experience the strange feeling of running above the clouds...

    

 

Surrounded by rocky peaks, we embark on the slope. We get carried away, speeding up and stepping quickly between still slippery stones and packed ice. The magnificent landscape flashes past. Only a few cows are there to observe us, a little surprised by the interruption to their quiet day. They needn’t worry, we’re just passing through.

 

Back at the Hut, our hands are swollen by the cold air that comes with the end of summer. We warm up with a good broth, admiring the view. The fire crackles in the stove; it’s time to bring out the cheese and uncork a good bottle of Swiss wine.

 

Outside, it starts to rain again, and we appreciate our comfortable shelter even more. We drift off with our minds at peace.

 

It is still early when we wake up to discover the amazing view from the large bay window. It’s hard to beat! The light is already hitting the summits, promising a fine day ahead. All that remains is to do up our laces and rush off for a new adventure...

 

During our stay at the Hut, we ran with the Cloudventure Peak shoe and the new On Anorak.

         

 

         

 

This article was originally published on the Les Others website.

 

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