a charming week we wandered up the valley of the Rhone, and then,
branching off at Leuk, we made our way over the Gemmi Pass, still
deep in snow, and so, by way of Interlaken, to Meiringen.
Leuk is a city located in the valley of the Rhone River, which flows
down out of the Alps into France, and on to the Mediterranean Sea.
Leuk is surrounded by picturesque mountains that rise abruptly from
the valley floor. Nearby Leukerbad, at a much higher altitude, is
a famous ski resort and spa. The steep Gemmi pass leads up across
the Alps, to the town of Interlaken and the tiny hamlet of Meiringen.
Conan Doyle was one of the first to practice the sport of downhill
skiing in Switzerland. He had seen skiers in Norway, and wondered
if the sport might be good for his wife's tuberculosis. Later, he
wrote about his adventures on skis for an illustrated article in
The Strand Magazine, "An Alpine Pass on Ski" (1894), in
which he freely, and humorously, admitted his ineptness at the sport.
Doyle and his first wife Louise in the Alps, in 1893
Swiss boys staring at Conan Doyle and his friends might never
have seen skis before
Once, I remember, as we passed over
the Gemmi, and walked along the border of the melancholy Daubensee....
The Gemmi Pass leads past the Daubensee, a small, high altitude
lake (over 7,000 feet above sea level).