Whenever I drive to Bavaria on the Swiss motorway between Yverdon and Bern, I see this nice mountain with its huge telecommunication tower from far. This autumn I finally climbed it starting from Erlach, a small town on the western shore of Lake Biel, one of the three lakes north-west of Bern that are all connected by channels and can be cruised with tourist boats.
Before reaching the base of the mountain at Nods, where the real ascent starts, one has to master a hill (by swiss categorisations) with various road options in order to reach plateau de Diesse. I chose to ride via Neuveville, Preles and Diesse. After leaving Neuveville, the road reaches immediately two digit percentage slopes and one gains quickly in altitude. The views over the town with its vineyards towards lake Biel and the Alps in the background already promises for what will come later …
The gold, yellow and orange colored tree leaves made for a prefect autumn decoration on a sunny October day. There was a bit of (fast) traffic on this first stretch, but after Preles it all got much quieter and more scenic with beautiful small farmer villages. The road after Nods is well tarmaced but gets narrower as one approaches the col de Chasseral.
After the col on the way up to the hotel there is usually a toll station as the last kilometer of road is a private road, but I couldn’t sfanee it – probably they only charge in summer. I had lunch on the terrace of the hotel, sitting in the sun and enjoying the fantastic views over the three lakes to the Alps.
Before descending I cycled up the last stretch to the communication tower which is nearly as high as the Geneva water fountain. Motorised traffic is not admitted to go there 🙂