Sunday, 3 September 2017

daytrip: hochrhön

We had the chance to do a bit of local exploring near our home and we found the ruin (die Mauerschädel as it’s singularly known) of a fortified church built around the year 1000 and abandoned about three centuries later during the height of the plague (Pest) in the fields behind the village of Filke, the inter-German border separating Bavaria from East Germany once passing through the nave of the structure.
In the 1970s, the whole of the structure was ceded to Bavaria for security purposes. Though the outbreak of the plague is considered the likely culprit for its eventual abandonment, another anachronistic suggestion is that once bulwarks of the region, Filke and other surrounding settlements that essentially became ghost-towns before being eventually repopulated sacrificed themselves to the marauding tribes of the Huns, able to Christianise the scouting parties only to be later betrayed and massacred. A maiden in white is said to haunt the grounds, but that is a relatively recent embellishment.
Afterward, we took another detour to see some marshland in a nature reserve (the whole region is a nature reserve, really, but there are also specially designated areas that are protected from traffic and development) but the trails didn’t really get very near and the scrub separating it from the path was intimidating. H and I did however get the chance to explore the deep woodlands and encountered some deer that bounded past us before we could react.
More our pace, however, we found an assortment of mushrooms and toadstools that we resolved to learn about and come back to the clearing where they seemed to thrive.
The forest directly behind our house are baronial lands, still in the same family, and we wouldn’t want to be accused of poaching.