Out and about on e-bike in the Upper Engadine

E-bike is a great way to get around in the Upper Engadine, taking advantage of those sweeping valley paths that are cross country loipers in the winter, and helping you climb the steeper sections of woodland.

Ahead of us is a view that could be a Turner landscape: emerald blue water in soft focus amid dusky summits, those in the near distance sharply defined, but melding into misty haze in the distance. Not that I can pay too much attention to the view: I am hurtling downhill on an e-bike and trying to avoid tree roots and pedestrians. 

We hired our bikes earlier this morning at Colani Sport, a family-run sports outfit in La Punt, and found our pedals, so to speak, as we cycled out of the village past the park and followed the river towards Bever and then Samedan. Just outside Bever we encountered congestion: a herd of bullocks was enjoying the only patch of sunlight in their field, which happened to be on the cycle path/road. Later we passed horses grazing by the river and all the way, trains intermittently chugged past.  

On the edge of Celerina, the 15th-century church of San Gian looked like brushed gold on its hilltop in the morning sunlight. We skirted around its base, passing a wood chopping yard where I inhaled deeply, that delicious scent of pine oozing into my nostrils. Then it was a steep climb - thank goodness for our e-bikes! - into the loose woodland around Lej da Staz. On its throne high above we could see the elegant Muottas Muragl funicular station. The lake was dark green, almost black in tone.    

Up and down, up and down we went as we passed Lake St. Moritz and Lej da Champfér in quick succession. Which is where we find ourselves now, zooming downhill towards Lej da Silvaplana. We're planning to picnic in the buttery light and listen to the waves gently lapping. From there it will be a gentle route onward to Sils, but I've a feeling a headwind will be accompanying us for the return journey. Better check the battery levels on our e-bikes!

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