In July 2016 the Crazy Mountain Balance Camp took place in an amazing remote valley high in the mountains in Switzerland. Mountain hiking, Yoga and meditations, crazy group games, hot tub, swimming in wild mountain lakes – this adventure will bring you back in balance!
Welcome to the world of CrazyCamp.org!
This event has taken place in July 2016 and is history. So you can not sign up for this event anymore.
Immersed in overwhelming mountains you will reconnect with nature and reconnect with yourself!
We’ll have a mountain hut just for our group in a remote valley in the Alps, at an altitude of 1.500m and far away from “civilisation”. In the daytime we will be hiking in the overwhelming mountain landscapes with picnics and swimming in wild mountain lakes. Yoga and meditations in the fields and at the mountain tops! Also we will learn things about the unique culture of the Swiss summer farmers. In the evening we will organize crazy group games, cook and eat together, gaze at the starry sky while having a glass in our outdoor hot tub etc. The Crazy Mountain Balance Camp will be an amazing adventure!
We will be in a simple mountain hut, far away from the noise and rumble of cities and villages, in the middle of beautiful nature: mountains with peaks of up to 3.200 metres above sea level, canyons, rivers, fields and forests. There are no villages in this valley; there are only some summer farms here and there where the farmers make cheese from the milk of the cows that stay on the high fields during summer (more about seasonal migration in the Alps here).
From our hut, it is an almost two hour walk to get to the nearest village. In that village there is a bus stop; the bus connects to a railway station. There is no public road for cars in our valley. The hut can be reached by mountain bike as well.
See pictures of a previous Crazy Mountain Camp at this same location here on tumblr.
The wooden hut is simple and reflects the life style of the summer farmers. All beds are in one big sleeping room. There is an open kitchen with a wood stove and there is a toilet. Outside is the hot tub. Please do not expect luxury things like comfort, personal privacy or mobile network coverage. There will be max. 14 people in our group. No smoking in the house or in the hot tub.
Mind & Body
Although just being in this absurdly beautiful, remote mountain valley is already a good reset for your stressed brain, we will be actively working on bringing back balance to your life. Every day there will be yoga sessions and meditations – in the hut in case of bad weather, but more likely in the fields around the hut, at silent mountain lakes, on mountain tops…
Most of these sessions will be guided by Michaela (see picture gallery below). Michaela participated in the 2015 Crazy Mountain Balance Camp and there I noticed her talent for engaging both beginners and more advanced people in these mind & body activities. Therefore I asked her to join again in 2016 and I am very happy that she said ‘yes’ to that! On top of this all, Michaela is a professional massage therapist so she will enrich our experience even more with massage workshops and individual massage sessions.
To accommodate a more important role for Mind & Body, the Crazy Mountain Balance Camp is 7 days instead of 5 days.
A good part of the Crazy Mountain Balance Camp will be dedicated to mountain hiking. Not mountaineering; no ropes, crampons or helmets. More info on the trail classifications (T1 etc.) here. Please do read!
There is a hiking program set up but it is not an obligation to participate; if you are a seasoned mountaineer you might prefer to go rock climbing by yourself instead of hiking with our group. And also if you want to spend your days relaxedly searching for berries or spotting birds, feel free to do so. In general everybody is expected to participate in the group life at the end of the day and in the evening. (faq)
The program might look something like this:
First day We’ll all meet in the afternoon at the bus stop in the village. Walking up to the hut (T1). Luggage can be brought by car (but not all the way to the house, still some 5 mins to walk with luggage).
Second day An easy hike that is not over steep slopes and always on non-challenging trails (T1 and T2). We will visit the cheese production facilities of one of the summer farms, have a picnic in the fields, enjoy the magnificent views and do a meditation during the hike, bonding with the mountains . This day will allow all ‘lowlanders’ to acclimatize to the altitude.
Third day No big hikes; rather chillax, do some meditations and yoga sessions. Also we will explore our creativity, expressing ourselves interacting with the mountains and trees, through for example photography, making rock structures, or whatever inspires us. It’s about the process, not about the result.
Fourth day A long hike, technically more challenging also (T3, small parts of T4). We will leave early in the morning, hike to an incredibly beautiful mountain lake, picnic, meditate and have a swim. If we feel fit, we will hike to a 2.500m high summit, and we will hike back to our hut. In total this excursion will take us some 12 to 14 hours.
Fifth day Again no big hikes but again chillax, meditate, do yoga. Michaela will do a massage workshop with the group.
Sixth day From the hut we will directly ascend a summit that is ‘only’ 2.350m high, but the ascent is steep. The hike to the summit (yoga at the summit!) and at the other side down (intermezzo: swimming and sunbath at another lake) and then back through the valley will take us some 12 hours again. (T3, small parts of T4).
Seventh day Vacate the hut in the morning, than yoga and a small hike. After this hike and a last meditation: the farewell group hug!
Weather conditions in the mountains can change fast and often. For this reason, the program can be changed according to what is safe and enjoyable.
Please keep the following in mind: the Crazy Mountain Camp is more a social event than a sportive event. The ‘weakest’ group member will set the pace. If you are a very sporty guy/girl that gets nervous if you have to hike a bit slower and/or have a pause more often than what you’re used to, you might be a problem for yourself and for the group.
Although the Crazy Mountain Camp is intended to be a relaxed, non-competitive event, mountain hiking is a sports activity that demands some extra attention for two reasons: altitude and safety. You don’t really need to have experience in mountain hiking, but you will need a fair condition, good mountain hiking shoes, a daypack, a water bottle, rain protection and a pullover. A pair of hiking poles is helpful but not a necessity. If you suffer from vertigo or acrophobia, our hiking program will not make you feel happy.
What if I love mountains but don’t want to join that ‘serious’ hiking?
I really like the whole idea and I would really like to join, but I’m really not into all this T3 and T4 hiking. Are there options for me?
Yes there are. You can make easy hikes for example to the village. Also some of the summer farms have a little terrace where you can have a drink or taste their cheese. For these kind of hikes you don’t even need mountain hiking shoes; good walking shoes will do the job, but forget about flip flops, heels and mocassins. If you’re into nature photography or drawing landscapes, you will find a multitude of subjects within 500 meters from the hut…
Most probably you will not be the only one that will not join the bigger hikes.
There is space and time for workshop-like activities, so if you would like to share some of your knowledge or skills, feel free! Maybe you want to teach us some capoeira, do a photo session, or make us sing the traditionals of your native culture? Just some ideas… it really can be anything. Another fun activity that we’ll be doing together is… cooking! (and cleaning afterwards…)
Your participation in the cost for these 7 days and nights is EUR 375 per person for accommodation, food (that we will cook together), guided yoga sessions and meditations and tourist taxes.
or EUR 319 if you are female and you choose to use the Gender Pay Gap Compensation (faq)
That is cheap! However, don’t come if you are only interested in an affordable holiday. The Crazy Mountain Camp is all about the group, spending fun evenings together, doing crazy games, and enjoying the mountains together!
What is included/provided and what is not?
+ Simple lunch (sandwiches, leftovers of yesterdays dinner)
+ Dinner (we will cook together)
+ Coffee, tea, milk, water, juice
– Snacks, fruit, energy bars, energy drinks, soft drinks, alcoholic beverages
+ Guided yoga sessions and meditations
+ Massage workshop and individual massage
+ Hot Tub
+ Tourist taxes
– Sleeping bags
+ Unforgettable fun
If you are a couple, please understand that in the Crazy Mountain Camp you can not behave like a couple. In general the beds are allocated through a lottery (faq) and we’re all sleeping in one big space. And you are expected to participate in all activities and group life as individuals and not as a couple. Yes you will be hugging – in the numerous group hugs! So be prepared to sit each at the other side of the group table during dinner, and accept that someone else than yourself might be giving your partner a massage of the sour muscles.
How to get there
We will be in the very heart of Switzerland, in one of the Cantons that founded Switzerland (Federal Charter of 1291). Zürich airport is at 100km, Basel airport at 155km, Geneva 330km, Milan at 215km. Excellent train connections (and then one bus) from mayor cities in Europe.
From Benelux (and NRW or Alsace) there is a ride share available (faq), approx. EUR 80 two-way per person. Most probably, as time passes by, ride shares from other directions will be added.
Switzerland is member of the Schengen agreement. If you can travel in any other Schengen country, you can travel in Switzerland.
Don’t miss these 7 nights in the mountains!
LET’S MAKE IT HAPPEN TOGETHER!
If you want to participate in this event, then you’re out of luck… It is a past event! Please check out the other upcoming Crazy Camps or sign up for the newsletter and I’ll keep you updated about new Crazy Camps.