Report - - Drains and Sewers in Lausanne, Geneva and Barcelona (Big, 2 Parter) | European and International Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Drains and Sewers in Lausanne, Geneva and Barcelona (Big, 2 Parter)


I Go Where The Drains Are
Regular User
*Sorry for mega images. Just started using Imgur as a host* (Dont worry, they'll be small once 4K comes in) Please 'Right Click on image and Open In New Tab' to see properly sized if the massive size offends.

You could call this a Curly Pilgrimage. Following in the footsteps of that Ultra Drain Finding, Shock Absorber Haired, Gold Leotard Wearing Tripper from Oz, i set about doing a bunch of Durhns she'd found in Switzerland and Spain over the last few years.

Of course, i started by fucking things up for myself. Got off the train in Lausanne, drank half a litre of Rum; drunkenly approached a group of revellers asking about the smell of burning plant matter and if i could acquire some; followed squad up n down so many Swiss hills until id (proper casual, like) drunk the other half litre; lost a few hours wandering around and came back to some kind of NMDA receptor function as the sun came up... Sans wallet, earphones or one joints worth of dank. FUCK!!

Wasted a day getting my self Moneygrammed some fresh Swiss Francs, while lamenting lost perception alteration and lack of aural oscillation, then, fully recovered the next day, set out to earn some fucking evil foot blisters.

The Core Attraction in Lausanne is the magnificent Louve/Flon System... but ill get to that. Id done the Louve arm in 2015, so i was here, this time, in Lausanne to do the Flon arm and a few of the other Steep culverts. Steep is the key word in this report.

I started with the Mebre.
Clean Water, Rushing.... Not so many Sidewalks. No Worry. Das Wut the Wudoors Fuh.


Blasting light coming down. Turned out it was a greenhouse inspection point... in someones backyard.



So fuckin Euro.
The traipse headed downhill, n while no actual STAIRS appeared, shit got decent STEEP.



Needed a shit real bad after. Tried a local refugee camp. Ended up at a shopping centre.

Next was the Flon. This is the Eastern arm of the main system under Lausanne. The system was built a VERY long time ago, to cover a cholera epidemic, the Flon is the more recently completed arm that i didnt have time to see two years ago. Due to Lausanne sitting on a big fucking hill, the entire system is very steep with, id estimate at least 30 big elevation drops between the two arms and the tunnel they converge onto. This incorporates, on the Louve side many steep slide/stairway combos and on the Flon side, a few Waterfalls. The bulk of the system was constructed in 1860, with older sections from 1830 and the newer bits from the 1950's.

As a precursor, heres a few pics from the Louve i took in Jan 2015.
Of note is this massive section.... it sits under a viewing window in an underground carpark. This was me impersonating Paddington Bear...

And 10 seconds later after i heard the sudden THRUM of the overhead Sodium Argon, actuated by a curious viewer overhead.

This time i had time to visit topside, n see the window myself:

The view down... (no wonder i wasnt seen....)

The Louve is STUFFED full of mega slides, stairs and features... to photograph them all is something i leave to others. In 2015 i only grabbed a few:

The Grand Chamber.


But this time it was The Flon i was seeing. To clarify, both tunnels are essentially fed with nice clean Swiss rivers.... on the rare occasion the diversion structures that now send both rivers into small electricity generating Hydro schemes overflow into them. Otherwise.... ITS ALL POO! The nice clean rivers were diverted a few decades back, because both tunnel systems funnel to a treatment plant that struggled to cleanse the wastewater when additionally burdened with river water that doesn't need treating.
So in i went, in bare plain normal shoes. And soon i was alongside a deceptively safe seeming burl of high speed sewage.
You have to leap the flow a few times, which is a bit scary.... as while you never go near the flow during normal traversal, if you FALL IN.... You FUCKING DIE.

The Flon has more new concrete bits and some mad crazy waterfalls along with about 8-10 fall structures.
This is a newer concrete slide.... Well, concrete tunnel as the entire trench bed is mean arse granite. This is a mere glimpse of this particular slide edifice.... Its full height stretches vertically far higher... 86 steps high, each step around 5 inches between. That's an 11 metre drop!

One of the few Flon Branch drops with dual stairs. The stairs on the right are essentially pointless as most of the drops feature steps only on the left.

Along the way the sound of high speed water is briefly eclipsed by the belting sound of falling water... The Shit Fall. This thing is DIRTY! The displaced air and spray is kinda fucking gross... But its impressive as hell.

In due course you reach the confluence of the two tunnels, which is the least interesting feature as both tunnels get small for it and the Y junction is set at an angle that's awkward to photograph. Downstream its big and the flow wide and scary, even though most of the drops become far smaller.



An amazing system, even tho the endless aeration of sewage gave me Assmilk in 2015.... Even tho it gave me Assmilk this time...

You leave this system smelling bad.... Despite having never once stepped in poo, the constant blast of sewage stench created by all the elevation changes infuses your clothes, your hands smell of straight underground dank, from holding onto so many grotty railings as you descend or ascend so many slippery staircases.

As such, the Vauchere was a nice clean finisher. A nearby culvert, that im not sure Curly looked at. Its like a mini... neigh, MICRO Flon. With just straight clean stream flow! Aired me out nicely!
Love me some scenic downspouts.

Bendy Stairs.

And Lightspeed drops.

A nice breezy finish.
The next day i was off to Geneva to get my plane to Barcelona, but 7 hours early, so as to wander around, find some sick 2010 throwback Maximator and do the local large culverts. Curly had spotted these as well, but her trip had been marred by rainstorms. She didnt miss much. Big concrete tunnels, but a nice jaunt regardless.

The L'Air and Driz rivers meet under the Stadium rail corridor just south of the famous Geneva River Junction. Typically Swiss, you need waders to get in, then wander along dry concrete walkways the rest of the time, in the L'Air at least.
A pit with sturdy plank walkway meets you just in from the Billboard sized 'You Will Die' signs outside.

Main concrete culvert, with the Drize coming on via two tunnels, both gushing too much water to have me bother following them farther than a few hundred metres. The smaller one was an 8ft diameter fibreglass pipe. So fucking slippery. Pic of the larger junction was blurry cos Maximator.

Big concrete tunnel. Despite how it looks, the flow in this was CLEAN. i crossed sides quite a few times, never fearing the horrendous shit-slip of the Louve/Flon.

Id seen the outfall on the river earlier. This is as close as i got to it. The whole thing dumped unceremoniously into this pit, with grab chains but no further walkways. I could see the outfall glimmer around the bend.

I legged it back, following the main drag, then wadered my fat arse up a motorway to the Drize infall, only to find the tunnel the same 2kms up as it had been upon joining. The infall was nice.

And then i rushed back to get my plane. And typically ended up with like 3 hours to kill. Fucker.

Part 2 Below.
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I Go Where The Drains Are
Regular User
SPAIN. BARCELONA! Last time i was here was 2010... To find derped Metro stations. Hmmm... There is a derped Renfe Station at the end of this report.... Meantime i was here to say hello to old mate Nckt (for those who remember) and do dirty Spanish sewers with Otter (youse remember). All found by Curly n fucking Will West. Got into an AirBNB, bought a bottle of Rum, met Nckt, got drunk, broke half the bottle of rum in a pub in a bottle... n thank fuck too. Spent the rest of the trip drinking beer. Next Day Otter appeared n we swedged our ways up some big dirty Barca hills to the Riera Horta. Curly had been miles downstream n reported near death, so we headed upstream.

Mad torch contrast going on here, i bought a new Amazon brand of torch called BORUIT. (Borrow It?)
Real fucking STRONG torch, vs Otters ganked LED Lensers. So some wonk levels ahead. Be warned.
The Riera Horta is a cruisy sewer feed, with no walkways, but enough room to avoid flow. Heading upstream, we had a long fucking walk through some nice big conc arch tunnel. Zero wasnt too racist... He's usually racist against concrete... prefers the more Creole/West Indian tones of JBizzle steez brickwork. We encountered a few Pit/Slides and a derped sidetunnel stairs affair.


Think i was still hungover.

We went a good ways downstream, but weren't fucked after 5kms.
Here's the sweet spot.

When you go to Barca. Eat Fucking Steak. Just do it.

Next day it was Bellesguard time. This system is proper dirty steep Barca. We hauled ourselves up to just below the Wankel Rotary Engine shaped comms town next to Mini Rio Jesus on the hills above Barcelona... to an infall with a big grille n lotta graff. Dirty Hinged Way in. Pic courtesy of bloggers who went with Curly.

RICHEST neighbourhood in Barcelona. Lol. This is the lid. You heave it out. It autolocks. You bust out. N hope no cunt shuts it behiond you. Cos thats a sore shoulder.

No fuckin worries.
No wuccin forries.

The Bellesgaurd is like a dirty stoopy Sydney drain that after a bit leads to some WORLD ENDING drainage bullshit.
The infall pipe is barely 6ft high. N so much Straight From The Bowl. Like squelch.

Then suddenly! Get Ready!
You might've noticed that Stairways, Staircases, Steps,.. that kinda shit is kinda fetishistic with drains... Its cos they are. Putting large volumes of water down a big elevation drop is best done with steps.
Less holes.
Less corrosion.
This fucker is the quiet King of stairs!

You follow a SFTB, gross as fuck 5fter for 400m then it steps you out atop THIS. This is the view DOWN. Its perplexing. But you'll get the view up soon. Like straight after.

Thats about some BULLSHIT high, into a 'Camera'. I dunno why its called a Camera. Its bare stone with concrete reinforcing.

We sprung our way down it and carried on, until after a junction the STEEPness of the tunnels started to make the prospect of walking against the flow seem real unpleasant.

Downstream of this junction it gets steep. Reports over the years by persons more invested report that it gets STEEPER still. To give you an idea, the 9ft ovi tunnel downstream of this image has STEEL lined walkways and the further down we went the more we found blasted-away walkways with either rusted-out or hydraulically shifted steel.

So we turned back and headed up the cobblestoned (more stoned than ive been in 10 months) elevation change between Bonanova and Bellesgaurd.

Then back to the Camera. Such a big dirty Staircase!

And with that we plonked it to the manhole. In hope it was still open. It was. Otter emerged before i did, and promptly ZAPPED himself on the electric fence near the lid chimney as i popped out.

The next day we were supposed to rent a car n go to Valencia. But with my D/L and credit card gone.... Well the ass milk struck me hard. Like 80 Grit Sandpaper. Gushing once an hour. Combinations amassed n i called it and i vetoed the 7 hour round trip. So instead, we ended this drain excursion with some quiet Renfe derp station. Barricentro. N some sleep. Sleeeeeeeeeep.


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I Go Where The Drains Are
Regular User
No unfortunately. That day was the day i spend living on 20CHF until i could get some cash sent thru Moneygram. As it went it was gunna cost £40 return to get out there cos Swiss rail travel is daylight robbery.


Did you have a go at Chavalon in the end?