The weekend is here, and I need a break from blogging about the Horse Market and from some other things as well. Good job then that, in a bit more than an hour, I'll be on my way to O.K.'s again.
I spent last weekend at his place, and enjoyed everything that can be enjoyed with the man you're in love with. On the Sunday, we went on a hike in the beautiful Black Forest - mere minutes by car from O.K.'s home village.
Here are some of the pictures I took. Starting off from where we left the car (at a designated parking space where surprisingly few other cars were patiently waiting for their owners to return from their walks and hikes):
Along the first part of the path, there were several chainsaw sculptures made of tree trunks. We were not always sure which animal they were supposed to be, but this one is definitely an Auerhahn (wood grouse, heather cock, Tetrao urogallus... not sure which is the correct English term, but this bird is something like a symbol for the deepest depths of the Black Forest:
On we went. A beck that would normally be just murmuring along next to the path was now, due to the heavy rain of the past weeks, a very chatty - almost shouty - stream.
I know the wildflowers never turn out that well on camera, but believe me, they were there, and looked very beautiful on these meadows:
Deeper into the woods, and steeper up the hill we went. A signpost near the parking lot had indicated that our goal, the Moosturm (a viewing tower on top of a mountain called Moos - "moss"), was only 5 km away. Now you know that 5 km to me is not much - I often walk that on my way home from work, when I get off one train stop before my actual one, and I easily do that in under an hour. But if those 5 km are up, up, uphill all the time, it's a different story! Good job it wasn't very warm that day.
I know it doesn't really show in the pictures, but believe me, it was uphill, and not just slightly so, all the way.
And once we were further up, spectacular views rewarded our efforts:
The monument we saw from the distance is a memorial for "Lothar", a heavy storm (sometimes even classified as a hurricane) that hit the south of Germany in general and this part of the Black Forest in particular at Christmas 1999. I remember it vividly, and you can still see the traces.
But the monument wasn't where we wanted to go. We first had a proper view of Moosturm coming round a bend, still bravely hiking uphill:
Views from the top of the tower in all directions:
I can't tell you exactly what you are looking at here, although O.K. pointed out places I know (or at least know of) to me. France is so close here that my mobile informed me that I was now in the French mobile phone network once we were on top of the tower.
More about Moos (the mountain) and the surrounding area can be found here in English.
The path we'd come:
Going back down - not the way we'd come, but towards a guest house in the woods run by a club called Naturfreunde (friends of nature), where you can have a snack and a drink, rest your legs for a bit and use their facilities. They even have a drying room for wet clothes, and I believe it gets used a lot by cyclists and hikers.
We took a break there, and then walked back to the car - all downhill now - on a different path. It was coffee time now, and we decided to visit the picturesque town of Gengenbach, which you'll see in one of my next posts.