This is Switzerland: Piling on at Pilatus

on Wednesday, September 25, 2019

We boarded a boat at Lucerne to Alpnachstad (See). Once there, we rode the Pilatus Cog Railway to Pilatus Kulm. This is the world’s steepest cog railway with an average grade of 38 percent; the highest at 48 percent. The train took us 6,982 feet above sea level. It uses the Locher rack system (engages center rack with cogs on each side instead of on top, providing stability, and no teeth can jump out of rack). The 2.86-mile line takes 30 minutes to climb, but 40 minutes to descend. It uses transfer tables instead of switches to move from one set of tracks to another. In operation since 1889, the line was electrified in 1937. The ride takes you through forests, stone bridges, and tunnels. At the top of Pilatus, in addition to a lovely view of the Swiss Alps, you can eat lunch and shop. My head has been spinning with souvenir shop fodder. It seems to me one will never forget these mountains or incomparable train rides whether you have a magnet on your fridge or a mug in your cupboard as a reminder or not.

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