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Poste 13. Mon Repos

Mon Repos, (my restful place) is a typical rustic farm house. Its wooden facade retains a sentence, protected by glass. In 1901, Alfred Cérésole and Albert Gos left traces of their friendship with Emile Javelle:

“The thought of you, dear Javelle, in this place that I treasure, follows and embraces me. Here you were happy, enjoying supreme peace, here where your noble heart loved to return.“ Alfred Cérésole A.G. (Albert Gos)

Alfred Cérésole (1842-1915), was a Vaudois, a pastor and poet, who was passionate about mountains and popular traditions. In “Le vieux Zinal et son premier registre“ written in 1902, he went through the old register of the first inn and found the trace of those that stayed there including the well-known mountain climbers Tyndall and Whymper but also of writers Eugène Rambert,Emile Javelle,and the Geneva painter Albert Gos.

Albert Gos (1852-1942) made his first appearances in Zinal, in 1875. After studying painting in London and Paris, his exhibitions in Switzerland and abroad were highly appreciated. His paintings showed the beauty of the alpine world, especially the Matterhorn. The successful climb of the Matterhorn by Whymper in 1865, made Zermatt an attraction not only for climbers but also for painters looking for grandiose subjects.

Emile Javelle born in 1847, French, was a French teacher who settled in Vevey. In 1870, he climbed the Matterhorn and became the second member of the Swiss Alpine Club (SAC) to achieve this ascension seen as a considerable achievement. Beginning in 1870, he came to Zinal repeatedly and in less than ten years, he climbed the great Valais peaks, among them: the Weisshorn, Zinalrothorn and the Dent-Blanche. He was president of the Diablerets section of the Swiss Alpine Club in 1874-1875.

A great mountaineer and very sensitive writer, he had the merit of discovering the beauty of the high mountains. He died of tuberculosis in 1883 at the age of 36.

After his death, his stories were collected in a book, “Souvenirs d’un alpiniste”, which was published in 1886 and became a true classic of Alpine literature.

A letter written by Emile Javelle to a friend on July 15, 1872 begins:

“Finally, my friend, here I am in Zinal, eight leagues from Sierre and a thousand miles away from the world’s problems; Zinal (...) a haven of peace such as there are few left in the Alps.

You surely want to know, why I came back again this year : because nowhere else have I found as at the end of this lost valley (...) such a sense of deep peace at the foot of such magnificent grandeur (...) But you do not know of this place from where I am writing, nor do many others. Zinal has such a beautiful place in the sun but indeed remains unknown to the world ; guides barely mention it, nor do we see any print, or photograph representing it, and yet in all of this wonderful Valais, it is indeed one of the most beautiful places.”

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After a few meters, below a barn-stable, there is an old house.

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Poste 13. Mon Repos
3961 Zinal
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