Stage 2 (Via Jacobi) Stans – Geneva – Mountain bike the Camino Santiago

July 2013, Stans (Switzerland). The quest continues.

This stage has a length of about 300 Km in 5 days. It starts in Stans Lake Lucerne, passes the Lake Brienz, Lake Thune and Lake Geneva where the Via Jacobi ends in Geneva. There are two amazing cities Thun and Fribourg on the Camino, if possible stay there overnight.

Map by (c)

Day 1. The weather and the forecast is great when we start very early in the morning by car in our home town. Reaching the Switzerland border it starts looking rainy, and as we finally reach Stans, we are in the apocalypse. No way to go somewhere except in a hotel today. We skip the reservation for the first hotel Lungern and book another one at the Lake Lucerne. It pours the entire night and even when we start in the next morning it is very wet.

Lake Lucerne Camino Panorama Via Jacobi mtb

Lake Lucerne after the apocalypse

Day 2. The morning starts wet on the Camino, and the way climbs up to the Lake Sarnen, where the sun prevails. There is a nice foot way direct on the beach. No trails at all today, but relaxed cycling.

mtb Camino Via Jacobi Lake Sarnen

View back to the Lake Sarnen

After a final climb we reach Lungern and its lake.

Day 3. Behind the hotel door a steep way up to the Brünig pass starts. From 700m up to 1000m.

mtb Camino Via Jacobi Steep uphill in the morning light

Steep uphill in the morning light

There is a lot of traffic on the pass street, luckily the Via Jacobi disappears into the mountains after 1 Km.

mtb Camino Via Jacobi Uphill on stairs

Uphill on stairs

The following kilometers are very nice, first a uphill on stairs, then a steeply passage on a wet mtb level 3 root trail.

Down on 560m again, we reach the Lake Brienz where the Camino snuggles very nice on the south side of the lake.

Lake Brienz Camino Via Jacobi mtb

Lake Brienz

After Interlaken, the Camino climbs partially awesome into the mountains. Since it is already late, we choose the chicken way along the lake on the street and reach Thun, what a lovely place!

Thun Camino Via Jacobi mtb Panorama

Thun Via Jacobi in the evening light

 Day 4, heading to Fribourg, the next lovely city. Up and down trough nice farm land.

Switzerland farmland Camino Via Jacobi mtb

Picture book like Switzerland farm land

Only one hiking pilgrim on the way today. Fribourg is a very nice old town, with old towers and a great location above the river. Stay there if possible.

Day 5, course to Lausanne at the lake Geneva. The night in the hotel was already very warm, the day starts even warmer.

Fribourg Camino Via Jacobi mtb

Via Jacobi Fribourg

Heading to the small fortification city Romont, one of the places on the Camino that you can see one hour in advance and one hour after you already left it, since it snuggles nicely on a hill with a fortification wall around it.

We reach Moudon (550m) at about 2 pm, and it is terribly hot, more than 30°C. The way climbs now up to 900m, in the hottest time of the day. Very hard, but then thanks to our bikes we are very fast down at the lake Geneva in Lausanne.

Day 6, final day for us at this stage, and also the last for the Via Jacobi that ends in Geneva and continues there as Via Gebennensis. The Camino follows the beach of the lake very nice, and the weather is also perfect.

mtb Camino Via Jacobi Lake Geneva

Relaxed cycling along the beach

mtb Camino Via Jacobi Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva

Thanks to we get a reasonable priced 4* hotel directly at the central station in Geneva. It is so luxury that they even don’t have a bicycle room. Since we have no locks with us, we must take the bikes into our room in the 8th floor. We push them trough the entry hall over the carpet, dirty as they and we are 🙂

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Next: Stage 3 (Via Gebennensis) Geneva – Chavanay



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