During "Alpaufzug" the cowherd is led through the village and up into the hills for Summer grazing. The best milking cow leads the pack and wears a flower wreath.
We visited Gimmelwald
in the month of May
where it can look like this one day:
. . . and like this the very next day:
The cows were not here in May, but the sheep certainly were.
They, too, donned cowbells.....
The cowbells, at least for the cows, can cost up to $1,000 for the bell and another $1,000 for the highly decorated leather strap.
Upon arrival, as we made the magnificent climb up to Walter's Mittaghorn Hotel (cabin), the sheep greeted us rather noisily in traditional Swiss fashion and led us up the hill.
The baying of the sheep and the ringing of the bells will live in my mind forever whenever I think about Switzerland. I have a short video below so you, too, can experience it.
(Walter is an unbelievably great cook!)
My other posts on Switzerland: