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Sechseläuten 2013 & Swiss Weather Prophets

Posters for this year's Sechseläuten have started to flood the city of Zurich and the surroundings towns. It will take place on Monday April 15th this year with hopefully a bit more cheerful weather than what we experienced so far this year.

I wrote a post that explains the tradition of Zurich's Sechseläuten last year so I won't go into depth about it this time. Only this much: at the end of the Sechseläuten march through the inner city of Zurich the Böögg (snowman puppet) will be burned on a stake. According to popular belief, the time it takes until the Böögg's head explodes indicates how warm and long the summer will be (the faster, the hotter).

This way of "predicting" the weather is just one of many traditional (or alternative) methods of meteorology found in Switzerland. A good example for this are the Innerschwyzer Meterologen (or Muotothaler Wetterfrösch), a group of weather prophets who try to predict the weather through nature. The most known weather prophet in Switzerland is Martin Horat who has a wider audience mainly through a series of commercials for

There are currently six weather prophets active in the group and each has his own secret ways of predicting the weather for the next year or season. The weather prophet who came closest with his prediction usually receives an award at the groups semi-annual meetings.

Another way of "predicting" the weather are the so called Bauernregeln (farmer's rules). They have been passed down through generations of farmers and are usually in the form of short rhymes. The usefulness of these rules has not been proven scientifically but many of them still seem quite plausible in the popular ear. Think about this one:
"Erst Mitte Mai ist der Winter vorbei." (Only in the middle of May is Winter over)
I mean, we are mid April and Winter is still keeping a strong hold on our weather. Bauernregeln are also a great way to point out certain things in a humorous way as does Diego Balli with his illustrations:

I'm not up to date to what the Bauernregeln and weather prophets predict for this years summer. Let's hope it is a good prediction and pray that it will be a true one! :)



  1. I can't understand a single word of what the prophet is saying... damn!

    1. Hehe :) He says: "I believe it's gonna be a good winter. How do I know? Come have a look. Do you see these ants here? They are telling me how the winter is gonna be. (Picks up the ant) Crazy! They have thighs like a female ski racer. And what is that? There is a Dutch ant also. And here at the end are some English ones. French. Italian. They are coming to us. They know why. That can only mean one thing: Here in Switzerland there's gonna be a crazy beautiful winter with a lot of snow and sun. Come to us, we don't bite."


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