On this week’s Amazing Race, we trade desert for snowy mountains in Switzerland for the least perfect way to transition from winter to spring.

From Africa to Switzerland, from the desert to the snowing mountains — could the climate be any more different? Teams travel to Grindelwald by plane and then by train and then by train again. Any advantages are moot because the next clue holder won’t be ready until the morning.

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The clue holder is a shepherd, who’s currently on this scooter/sled thing to greet them in the morning. It’s amazing and I demand one.

Teams next must travel by train to pick up a cute puppy. Excuse me, they aren’t puppies; they’re small Beethovens. After arriving, teams must deliver their rescue dogs by taking another train. Everyone misses their dogs and I miss my dog. The singers’ puppy does not want on that train, but luckily the girls’ racing boyfriends help out. Seriously, if these two teams don’t end up dating, I’ll be sad.

Up Up and Away

The snow, the Alps, Switzerland in general, is really gorgeous. Pure white heaven.

The Roadblock requires a team member to climb out of an observation deck and scale across the plank/wall rock to grab a clue from a Travelocity gnome. Product placement alert? One Wynona, the weakest competitor, must do this to catch up on the Roadblocks for an even distribution of tasks among team members.

How is Katie and Jennifer’s hair so beautiful and perfect in this weather? Everyone accomplishes this very scary task with relative ease except for Wynona. I’m not sure if it’s that hard because of the editing, but everything is hard for Wynona physically.

Teams travel by train and must follow the sounds of a horn for their next clue. Then they need to use a sled to transport 200 pounds of cheese to a storage barn that is downhill. This is reminiscent of an earlier Amazing Race challenge in which contestants had to carry the 50-pound cheese on their backs. That looked considerably harder.

Bates and Anthony, immune from the cold because they’re hockey players, race up there as if it is nothing, with no assistance from the side railing of string. While Katie, in line using a rope to get uphill, cannot get up to save her life. After getting to the top of the hill, teams go downhill backwards with the cheese and sled in front of them, getting pushed by the heavy cheese.

Now, I think if I had been on the show this season, I could do the water stints, the sky diving, the pseudo-rock climbing. These fears I would have expected out of The Amazing Race.

My most irrational fear, however, is cheese. Cheese, for some reason, freaks me out. The texture, the taste, the smell — I literally flinch thinking about it. So this probably would have been my breaking point on the race and, accordingly, is the time I spend away from looking at the TV. That’s my breaking point and I feel an ounce more of sympathy for fears on the race. But only irrational fears. What do you all think?

Teams must make their way now to the Bodmi Snowboard and Ski School, which is the pit stop. And now it is time for this week’s segment of…

Checking in with the Teams

Bates and Anthony (Team Hockey Players): First again? These two are making this look easy. They are a strong team and win a trip to Bora Bora. Uh, they were just there. Couldn’t they have thought of a better place? And part of me hopes they take the Country Singers.

Mona and Beth (Team Roller Derby Moms): Again, these two are rather boring. We know little about them still, except that the Alps are more beautiful than Colorado. They manage to stay in it for most of the race and I won’t be surprised if they make it to the finals. They sneak up on you.

Max and Katie (Team Newlyweds): Anyone catch Max flipping the bird at the camera over their “win” against those who miss the train? Or at least the blurred images on his hands? Katie scales against the wall very quickly and they manage to stay in the top the whole time. They do a little dance at coming in third.

Caroline and Jennifer (Team Country Singers): Perpetually perky, these two continue to have flawless hair in the freezing cold — that’s why they are just perfect for the hockey players! Jennifer conquers her fear of heights by ignoring the heights.

Joey and Meghan (Team YouTubers): Technically, they come in last because they walk to the ski school while everyone takes a taxi. That hike up the hill looks brutal and if I was Meghan, I would be crying the whole way, too. Running in the cold is rough. Joey is unsurprisingly supportive and positive throughout

Chuck and Wynona (Team Hair): They are 12 seconds behind and with another riff in their marriage as Wynona has to do the rock scaling portion. She struggles physically, as per usual, and it costs them major time because they miss a train. Chuck is angry and annoyed, while Wynona whines that he doesn’t even compliment her. I’m not sure which of these two frustrates me most, but I feel sympathy for both. Chuck is a bit of a control freak, but a strong competitor in it to win it, frustrated at his wife’s whining. Wynona is the more thoughtful of the two, but probably the weakest contestant ever who is prone to giving up easily and shutting down when things get bad. I know I have joked about Max and Katie’s marriage, but I’m most worried about these two. Wynona takes the easy way out by rolling her cheese down the hill and not using the sled. It costs them a fatal 30-minute penalty, even if they come in fifth, technically. They are eliminated with a rocky marriage.

So what did you think of tonight’s episode? Are you sad to see Chuck and Wynona go? What are your irrational fears that would break you on the race? Other thoughts? Sound off below!

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(Image courtesy of CBS)

Emily E. Steck

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV