My camera has an issue with its autofocus. I thought I had found a way to manage it, but looking at the pictures from my Switzerland trip, an awful lot of them are unusable. Real pity, too, because a lot of them are quite nice unless you look closely. So I'm not yet sure what I'll do about them, or about the camera for that matter - try to fix it or buy a new one, as I've been pondering for quite a while now. Decisions, decisions…
Anyway, this one came out okay, even if the lighting is bad. Don't blame me; this is on the north side of the Gotthard pass, I.e. by definition mostly in the shade cast by a giant mountain range that separates Central Europe from the Mediterranean area.
Göschenen is, of course, a stop along the old Gotthard railway line, which travels up the increasingly narrow valley before disappearing into the summit tunnel here. (Don't confuse this old Gotthard tunnel with the new Gotthard base tunnel, which is way longer, way further down the valleys on either side, and allows crossing this continental divide much quicker and without major grades). The valley actually continues beyond Göschenen, but from here it becomes a mountain gorge, full of sheer cliff faces. Still, for millennia, this was the quickest way to cross the alps - and there is a railway line.
The Schöllenentalbahn, as it's known, used to be its own company but is nowadays a short appendix on the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn Network (one half of the Glacier Express line, though that train doesn't pass through here). It runs with short shuttle trains, consisting of three cars and a locomotive - anything more is not allowed. It's Meter gauge and cog wheel all the way, and the steepest part on the entire network. The end is on top of the mountain range in Andermatt (there is no corresponding railroad to get back down on the south. Someone should really build that). The line is really short; trains take ten minutes up and fifteen down (the speed limit is lower downhill for safety reasons). Still, it's definitely worth a visit.
This here is a typical train that arrived from Visp. It left several of its cars behind in Andermatt, taking only the bare necessities: A cab car (always on the uphill side for safety reasons) with first class section; a new low-floor car for accessibility; and an old normal second class car, the best choice for railway fans because you can lower the windows there to take pictures. If your autofocus works, that is.