Saturday, the 9th of May, was my last full day at O.K.'s; I was going home the next day. Weatherwise, it started overcast, but the sun came out properly later, making it feel so summery that we both felt like having Apérol Spritz for sundowners back home.
Once again, we re-visited a place where we'd been once before together, this time on a snowy day in January of 2017. The pictures from that visit can be seen here for comparison.
Starting off straight from home, we walked 23 km altogether - much less than the day before, but still quite a distance, compared to the walks we regularly go on around the village or when I am on my own after work.
Along the river Kinzig, looking towards Ortenberg castle:
Possibilities to cross the river are few and far between, so we walked along it for quite a stretch before reaching the bridge from where I took this picture. As you can see, the river has been artificially straightened, more resembling a canal. Nowadays, efforts are being made to renaturalise it in parts, but not (yet?) here:
Our goal today was Offenburg's "house mountain", called Hohes Horn. We reached the viewing tower on top at around 3:00 pm:
Views from the top - very, very different from my previous visit in January 2017!
The path we took last time we came up here,; this time, it was our route back down:
We ate our sandwiches and drank some of our water at the foot of the tower, on a bench at the side of the hut you can see in the picture above.
Quite a few other people were there; whole families with several children, cyclists, walkers of all shapes and ages, but everyone was being careful about distance.
One couple had two small twin girls with them, maybe three years old. They very seriously pondered us while we were eating, without saying a word; then their mother said "We'll also eat once we've been on the tower," and the two little girls bravely and cautiously went up all those steps, with one parent holding the hand of one twin each.
In the woods:
Restored water pump house leaving the woods just above Ortenberg castle:
The castle in the afternoon light, just before 5:00 pm:
For our route back to the village from here, we chose to try a different path, one that neither of us was really sure about.
We were sure there would be a way across the fields without having to go along the road, and knowing the general direction helped - but we found out there is really no straightforward way, unless you cross orchards and carefully walk along the rim of fields actually not meant to be walked on. We did it, and for a long time, we did not see any other people. I enjoyed this little adventure; it was so quiet and peaceful there.
Maybe for one of our next walks, we will try the reverse approach; we may detect yet another path across, easier accessible.