Packrafting in its full variety (Switzerland)

Packrafting was born to cover wilderness boating, where transportation is limited and expensive. Excellent for long treks in trail free terrain. Take the boat and let the boat take you where no one goes. I like that.

However, if we stayed to that heritage, there would be no use of packrafts in Europe. Quite the contrast, as there is a long tradition of public transportation, packrafts open up the joy of a true mix of means of transfers.

To proof one can have fun that way I tossed in 8 Rivers, 7 days, 6 forms of moveing, 5 Cities, 4 languages, 3 Thousand meter elevation, 2 people, 1 Country

The slides still lacking the descriptions, but that comes in German anyway. So the Alpacka community gets the first glimps:

Hope you enjoy,


Wow sven, fantastic !

What Jules said!

Great pictures. So far I’ve only taken my Alpaca out on Lake Zug. I suppose that was the first packraft voyage there. :slight_smile:

Most probably! When did that take place?

To clarify on the contents of the trip:

8 Rivers: Lake Schiffenen, Saane, Aare, Sense, Simme, Kander, Lützschene, Aare gorge
7 Days: September 11-18th.
6 modes of transport: Alpacka canoe style (Dory/Explorer as double, Alpacka kayak style (Llama single), Train, Bus, Car, Hike
5 Cities: Bern, Fribourg, Thun, Interlaken, Zürich
4 Languages: Swiss German (not to understand by me!), French, Retro roman, Italian
3 Thousand meter elevation: actually just 2158 (Kaiseregg)
2 People: See Picture
1 Country: Switzerland

I learned and liked:

  1. Switzerland is well infrastructured to get around easily, yet leaves enough room to explore.
  2. Switzerland is different enough from Germany to feel foreign, yet easy to travel (no language barrier, choose 1 of 4)
  3. Switzerland is modern, yet surprisingly archaic in some places.

Plus: September is a very nice time to visit. Warm, not hot, enough, not too much water.

Experience yourself!


My wife and I did the trip on Lake Zug at the end of September. She actually had the alpaca first as I was paddling my feathercraft to start out with. Sadly we forgot the camera. :frowning:

The ‘grand canyon’ section of the Vorderrhein looks quite interesting. Though it’s been many years since I’ve done any real whitewater. I’ve got a couple books and the TCS map of paddling/rafting areas.

We like the speed of the feathercraft, but you can’t beat having a little boat you can put into a backpack and carry around on the train easily. In fact, you could use the train to get in that section of the Vorderrhein at least two to three times in one day. :slight_smile:

I’m planning a trip to Europe this winter and I’m wondering if this option could open up a whole new element to my travels: Do the rivers freeze up during winter in Switzerland, or in Germany? If not, are they floatable? I’m planning on hitch hiking most of the time, but I’m thinking, if I brought along my packraft, things could be much more fun and interesting. Of course, winter packrafting here in Alaska would be more like pulling an inflated sled across the ice, but what about over there? Does anyone have any insight on this? Thanks!


They hardly freez up, but you might :wink:
It’s possible to boat in Winter, but requires very good cold water cloths. Preferably a drysuit.
Things get easier beyond the Alps, even can have good water levels (snowmelt).
Easy floats on lager rivers are always possible (Rhein, Main, Elbe etc.)
Plan your route, see what water ways are there and get back for detailed Info.