Our last weekend in Europe found us back in Switzerland. We paddled Thursday and Friday on the Inn River while waiting for our weekend-warrior paddling buddies to be free to join us. The Inn has multiple sections and is “roadside” which made for good hitchhiking for us. Once we launched on the river though, we rarely saw the road, and the canyons seemed quite remote. Don hitched a ride with a couple in a converted 4×4 firetruck RV, and was coveting their ride. (Perhaps until we never got over 45 kmh going up the hills. Maybe our rented 2.0 liter VW TDI is a bit more appropriate for driving the roads in the Alps, but they had a nice mobile house)
One of the highlights of the Inn was the Finstermuenz section, which flows from Switzerland into Austria (yes, carry your passport) and besides having great big powerful rapids, ends with a float under a the Finstermuenz castle bridge.
Happily the crux falls has a kick ass eddy above it. I suppose it’s runnable, maybe the Bomb Flow boys would go…but it looked like a high likelihood of reconnecting HARD towards the bottom. The portage was fun though, and you can slide off the shelf and catch the last part of the drop. Very pretty canyon as well.
On Sunday Peter caught up with us again, along with Fredy and another Phillip, and we paddled the Reuss River. They all said we were quite lucky to find it with water in it, as it has a few dams on it and rarely runs. Philip #2 has been paddling in Switzerland for 30 years, and it was the first time he was able to get on it!
Old Roman bridge on the Reuss River, Switzerland
We have been very impressed with the bridge and tunnel building throughout Switzerland. I guess they’ve been practicing since Roman times…
Everyone else had to go back to work, but we had Monday free before we had to catch our flight out of Milan. We thought since the Reuss was so fun, and rarely runnable, we would camp out nearby and paddle it again while we had the chance. There was even a upper section starting at the “Devils Canyon” that had some amazing slides between portages that looked really interesting from the bridge.
But while we were camping it rained a bit that night…