Alpine flower notes: Alchemilla

Alchemilla alpina

Lady’s mantle Alchemilla A fascinating plant that is easy to overlook, lady’s mantle can be seen flowering across the Alps from spring through to autumn. There are many species worldwide, but the most common in the Western Alps are alpine lady’s mantle (Alchemilla alpina)…

Alpine Wildlife Notes: Grey Wolf – Canis Lupus

Female Wolf

The grey wolf is one of the three large predators that disappeared from the French Alps towards the end of the 19th century, the other two being the lynx and the brown bear. However, in the past few years, small numbers of wolves have…

Alpine Wildlife Notes: Alpine Ibex –Capra Ibex

Alpine Ibex

With its large curved horns and incredible climbing ability, the Alpine Ibex is one of the most instantly-recognisable animals in the Alps. Also known as the Steinbock or Bouquetin, this species of goat lives wild in the European Alps and can regularly be spotted…

Tales of the Alps – The Devil’s Bridge

Pont du Diable

This story recounts the legendary origins of the Pont du Diable, or Devil’s Bridge, in St. Christophe-en-Oisans.  Saint Christophe-en-Oisans is a sleepy alpine hamlet halfway up the Veneon Valley. The inhabitants keep livestock in the high pastures, or welcome the visitors who come for…

Alpine Wildlife Notes: Alpine Chamois – Rupicapra Rupicapra

Chamois

The Chamois is a species of goat-antelope found across the mountain ranges of Europe and Asia. Native to the Ecrins region is the Alpine Chamois – a small goat-like animal with a distinctive white and black striped face. Chamois Description: The Alpine Chamois is…

Alpine Wildlife Notes: Alpine Chough –Pyrrhocorax Graculus

The Alpine Chough is one of two species of birds commonly referred to as choughs. The other is the red-billed chough. The alpine chough is a common sight in the Alps both summer and winter. However, the red-billed chough is less frequently seen in…

Tales of the Alps: L’Escalade, Geneva

Painting of the battle

How one old woman saved the city with a pot of vegetable soup… In this series, we look at some of the more interesting tales of the Alpine region. Some, like the battle of the ‘Escalade’, are true. Others have their origins in myths…

Alpine Wildlife Notes: Golden Eagle – Aquila Chrysaetos

The golden eagle is arguably the most famous of all raptors, and has been revered throughout history. In ancient Greece the golden eagle was Zeus’ messenger and animal companion. The Aquila was the symbol used by ancient Roman legions. It is currently the national…

Alpine flower notes: Colchicum autumnale

Colchicum Autumnale

Autumn crocus: Colchicum autumnale For the final Alpine flower article of the year we take a look at Colchicum autumnale. This is one of the few Alpine flowers you can still see flowering in mid-October. The delicate pink blooms flower across the Alps, and…

Alpine Wildlife Notes: Bearded Vulture – Gypaetus Barbatus

Bearded Vulture Close Up

In this post, we look at the Bearded Vulture, or Ossifrage (‘bone-breaker’ in Latin), the rarest in the Alps. This bird is known for its unique feeding strategy that helps it to survive in the harsh mountain environment. Description: The bearded vulture is the…