We discovered this amazing nature trail a couple of weeks ago when I was looking for a short hike close to home that could entice FriBoy. He thinks humans don’t need to walk because they have cars, bikes and other vehicles for this purpose, courtesy of evolution.
I am obviously trying to teach him that walking is as necessary and useful as breathing but since I can’t use pragmatic and rational arguments yet, I settle for the fun part: if you walk you get to pay more attention to your environment and observe all these cool animals and plants.
In this case it worked because this trail had the promise of observing nature up close and even watching some animal species. He expected to see lizards and was a bit disappointed that we didn’t see any, but instead he got to watch dragonflies which was quite magical for him. He thinks these insects are special and his excitement is barely containable when he sees one. See his project on dragonflies here.
My pleasure was in discovering such a beautiful and unique nature reserve so close to home, only a 10 minutes drive away from Fribourg. This site is quite special in Switzerland because of the particular ecosystem that has developed here after the last ice age, 18,000 years ago when the Rhone glacier covered this territory. Around 14,000 years ago temperatures began to rise, the glacier retreated, leaving a trail of small lakes and a very moist land where a rare type of forest (rare for the Swiss climate and geography) has grown: the marshy forest. Apparently willows, birches and alders are unusual in Switzerland.
Dogs are allowed but on a leash. It is also advisable to wear long pants and use protection against ticks, as this place is like paradise for them. Ticks prefer moist and high grass. We found four huge ones embedded in our dog’s fur.
Bird watching was a fun activity, we could see families of ducks and swans and their nests. You can also observe several amphibian species and all the rare and unusual plants are marked.
There’s also an observation tower where you can climb and have a nice view of the marshes, and many benches where you can sit and have a picknick.