The Brocken is also famous because Goethe (famous German writer who has an institute named after him that teaches German) described witches and warlocks flying to the Brocken on Walpurgis Night for some crazy funky shit, and also because he climbed the thing a number of times. And because of this, the Germans flock to this location to follow in the footsteps of Goethe. This would be kinda like us flocking to somewhere because Banjo Patterson once took a piss there..who really cares?!?!
Anyway, B and I started our 6.5km trek from Schierke to the top of the Brocken at around 15:00, and we eventually reached the summit 2 hrs later. This is no world breaking performance by any stretch of the imagination, but this also isn't the world's easiest hike up the mountain.
Once we got to the top we had about 2 mins of lovely weather and view before the weather closed in, it started to rain like all hell, and got totally covered in fog. But even with the shit weather, the climb was still worth it. Luckily there is also a steam train that runs to the summit, so we took that back down to Schierke.
Would have been a lot easier to take this up, and then walk back down
But the 'Brush conquered the Brocken anyway...
Oh, and Bel too...
But just remember not to drink the water that is found in the boiler of the steam engine...
Earlier that day we also went through two underground caves in the region. Unfortunately we weren't allowed to take photos in there, but the staleg-dings-bums formations in these caves were amazing - especially when you consider that a stalegmite/tite that is the thickness of your finger grows 7mm per year. Said another way, it would take 200 years to grow one the size of your thumb...and we saw some that were 3m tall!
My question is though - why must everyone touch everything? I mean, we were told in the first of our tours, right at the beginning, that if you touch them then they will not grow anymore due to the fat on our hands preventing the calcium being able to bind with the existing deposits. In the second tour the lady neglected to mention this, so a whole heap of ppl were touching the bastards, not realising that they are destroying 100s or 1000s of years of nature in 1 sec.
Oh yeah. Is anyone here scared of the dark? I ask because when we were in the caves they turned the lights out for a few seconds to show ppl how dark it was for one poor guy who got stuck in these caves for 3 days with an extiguished lantern. There were some chicks in the tour who started freaking out (we were in a cavern that would have been 30m across, and 8m high), and we had to ask ourselves "how do these people sleep at night?". The other stupid thing was that the lady running the tour had a torch, and if that failed, then we all had mobile phones which could light up to see the walls. Add to that the fact that like 30% of all Germans smoke, so someone was bound to have a lighter that we could use to find the way out!
Here are some other sights from our weekend in Wernigerode and surrounds: