Monthly Archives: Jul 2016

Oh well, better go home I suppose

Monday 6th June 2016

Cologne to Basingstoke.

After our usual breakfast here, we joined the A4 Westbound from the A559 extension of the A59 Northbound, and carried on via the E314 and Then the E40 round the dreaded R0 at Brussels and onwards towards France and the Tunnel at Calais.

(We stopped for Lunch just after Brussels, we like these services, and they are at a good position.)

On arrival at Calais we were rather early, however we were not offered an earlier train for once, so went and sat in Starbucks whilst waiting for our train to be called. They called us on time, so we went and queued up in the lane and waited. Unfortunately the trains were running late due to an earlier technical fault, so we waited another half hour before boarding but got back to the UK ok.

Stopped at Cobham Services on the M25 Clockwise, had a meal and stretched my bad leg and knee. After all this driving they really hurt, my knee locked itself up over time and just after the Reigate junction I managed to stretch it out, (Not easy when it’s your Right knee and it’s your driving) so a while out stretched was essential. Carried on back to Basingstoke, arriving mid evening.

Tuesday 7th June 2016

Rest Day in Basingstoke.

Had a really lazy day, pottered up to Sainsburys and got some food for the rest of the week, then back to Julies flat and slob out.

Wednesday 8th June 2016

Back to Cornwall.

Left Basingstoke after 9am, M3, A303 then A30 West. Stopped for lunch at the American (Style) Diner Route303 at Newcott http://www.routerestaurants.co.uk/route-303/ , I’ve been a couple of times before but it was Julies first visit. The portion sizes really do have to be seen to be believed, I only ordered two Chicken wraps, but they came with a salad and chips, proper chips not those Mash Julienne things the fast food places give you!

Continued down to West Cornwall and my little house near Camborne, Cup of Tea and unpack, 2 loads of washing later and that was that, back to work Tomorrow.

Unpacked and hung my new ‘toy’, set the time and tensioned the weights (No electronics or springs in this genuine article, the weights are 1.5kg EACH) and it worked first time.

I hope you haven’t minded reading this drivel, I’ve never done a travel log as a part a Blog before, and certainly not attempted to put pictures in before so it’s been a learning curve.

Don’t know when I’ll post again, but no doubt you’ll find it or avoid it when I do!

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Schiltach to Cologne.

Black Forest or lost.

Sunday 5th June 2016

After Breakfast I loaded the car, Nice thing taking you own car on these trips is that you can take as much luggage as you like, and having a Peugeot 3008 it’s got a large boot! As our two large wheelie cases and overnight holdalls, I managed to get Laptop case and Cuckoo Clock in and my Fleece jacket, all under the Parcel shelf.

Went and found Rose and paid for our room, the evening meals and all the wine. After the Bank added their large bit of silver as well, the Seven Nights B&B and Five evening meals etc. came to £736.18. try that in a Three star hotel in the UK for two people, Super-king bedroom etc.

We left Schiltach and travelled alongside the Kinzig river to join the B33 west to pick up the A5 northbound near Offenburg, then onwards and Northwards, stopping for Tea and cake then Lunch North of Frankfurt on the way to level with Koblenz, when I peeled off the Autobahn and cut across to follow the B42 up the Right hand side of the Rhine through Linz, Konigswinter etc. (As a resident of Cornwall I get withdrawal if I don’t see the sea or Boats on the water every week!)

This took us to the B59 and then at J35 we left to fill up with Diesel then go to the Karsten, our bed for the Night.

Familiar faces and Hotel was very welcome, we arrived about Four in the afternoon and as the heat was rising and with it the humidity sat out on the balcony of our room overlooking the Garden with a Cup of Tea for a while before flopping on the bed to read with the balcony door open .

This is Anna’s Garden at the Karsten with the sun shades pulled down for the Conservatory that forms part of the Breakfast room.

 

Last day in the Black Forest.

Black Forest or lost.

Saturday 4th June 2016

Drove to the Supermarket at the Eastern edge of the Village, got some more Milk for Tea in our room and crossed the road for Diesel for the car. Returned to the Hotel and parked up then walked into the Village centre and visited the Apothecary Museum at last! ( https://www.schiltach.de/en/Tourism/Places-of-interest ) I found this one to be better than the one that is part of the operating theatre Museum in St Thomas’ Hospital in London, Very interesting though all the labels are in German, it is self evident what most things are. Everything from Pestles and Mortars and Pill Rolling racks to their own small printing machine for bottle labels! Very worth going.

When we came out it would have been rude to pass the Coffee Bean Cafe as they are also in the market square, so we had to have one last BFG!

That’s enough activity today as I am starting the drive home tomorrow so again back to the Hotel to pack.

After packing. Flopped out for the rest of the afternoon before our last evening meal on site, Ulrich really is a good Chef, and His presentation is amazing.

Only one glass of Wine each tonight, (normally share a bottle) as I’m driving all day tomorrow.

Decided on a quieter day today.

Black Forest or lost.

Friday 3rd June 2016

Just spent time local to the Village today, went to the Dorotheen Huette in Wolfach  www.dorotheenhuette.info/index.html?&L=1

Nice shop and Cafe though the prices in the Christmas shop especially were on the steep side, the cheapest Glass baubles that I saw were  €9.99 . by the time we’d been through the shop and seen little that stated it was actually made here, we’d gone of the idea of a factory tour so had a drink in the Cafe and went back to Schiltach.

Wandered through the Village and found the Post Office, got stamps for postcards and I got some more cash out for the journey home and as a starter for the next time we venture abroad. Found another cafe in the village, this time on the other side of the second river (The Schiltach River) the Konditorie Cafe Bachbeck on Bachstrasse. BFG was a Sponge and Torte confection, and the ‘milk’ was creamer again. The young Lady that served us went off duty and was replaced for payment by a nice chap from Croydon!

After our now customary lunch we retired once more to read and snooze.

Lots of old houses and even more Kids

Thursday 2nd June 2016

Went to the Open Air Museum today, http://en.vogtsbauernhof.de/ very reminiscent of the Weald and Downland Museum on the Hampshire Sussex Surrey borders. It is just off the main road with a lovely car park but of course Three different nationalities of Coaches parked there.

Some toe-rags had burgled the ticket machine and left it out of commission so we had to pay the exorbitant fee of €2 for a full days parking when buying the tickets at the main entrance. These tickets are the book mark shape size and feel out of thin card, what a good idea!

Had a look round the first half, then with lunchtime approaching and a school party threatening to fill the next exhibit, we had to try out the Tea and Cake! Best cake so far by my reckoning, equal amounts of cake and cream and a layer of ‘proper’ cherries at the bottom, not jam or jelly.

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That’s a 10” plate and a full size Dinner fork! No mucking about here then, and all for €3.00.

After suitable refreshment we continued our tour, ending at a snack and Ice cream kiosk near the picnic area. How do these Primary school staff find the patience?

Fantastic site with examples of houses and mills, workshops etc. from all over the Black Forest and well worth the €20 including the €2 car parking that we paid to get in. Even got their own railway station!

On the way back to Schiltach, we stopped at a roadside Gasthaus/Cafe http://www.loewen-gutach.de/ for a drink and something light to eat, both chosing from the ‘light bites’ part of the menu I had a turkey strips salad.

Returned to Schiltach, noting the signs for ‘The DorotheenHutte’ as we went past Wolfach. Interest peaked, looked it up.. It’s a Glassworks with a shop and visitor centre.

Wasser Wasser everywhere.

Black Forest or lost.

Wednesday 1st June 2016

After coming back through Triberg Yesterday, we realised that that was where reputably the highest Waterfalls in Germany are, though we weren’t in a fit state to look at them by then anyway so off we went today to go and have a look for ourselves.

After reading various reviews on line and finding scant information about distance from and cost of parking etc. we went up through Triberg to the top of the first cascades on the B500 and found free parking and access to the path that runs right down alongside the river into the town. There is a toilet available at a little kiosk shop/drinks outlet adjacent to the small carpark but of course both were closed!

Gosh this path is steep! Only managed about 200M down it and we were both struggling to stand, let alone walk so turned round and shuffled back to the car to try lower down.

DSC00088Took this last one looking back up the path, the two tree trunks on the Left of the path are vertical!

Had read that the mid level has the best access, being almost level and suitable for wheelchair access so we set off there,

Pay and display parking, 75C for the first hour so after paying 90C (pay and display, no change) went to go and have a look.

The path takes you down to a little wooden toll kiosk where you pay for access to the waterfalls, we knew they weren’t really free so coughed up to the Fenella look-alike (Chorlton and the wheelies, Oh never mind) and walked on down the gentle slope.

There are two bridges over the falls, this path takes you to the upper one and the next one is about30M below it, they are situated at the place of the prettiest cascades, so we were in the right place then.

These are two pictures of the falls above the upper bridge…

And these Four are looking from there down to the Lower Bridge.

As the water floods over the rocks, at this time it was about 400mm deep which is quite a significant volume of water as it was travelling fast, I mean Really Fast as it has already come down about 70M of cascades by then. Lovely bridges, Wooden superstructure and solid handrails so a pleasure to lean on. Would have liked to linger longer but being decrepit the call of nature was calling. We drove on down into the town and parked in the central 3 level car park, had read it was a long way from the Falls and expensive but 50 Metres and €3 for the hours we were there didn’t seem bad to me!

It’s amazing whose poster you see on village noticeboards…

Public toilets next to the car park and a little kiosk with tables and chairs from a Pizzeria over the road provided relief and cups of tea. An Ice cream on departure was very well received as was the performance of the clock built into the first floor facade of the shop opposite.

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This is close on the epicentre of Cuckoo Clock building and certainly retailing so of course there was a Cuckoo clock complete with Teddy type bears on a carousel , one hitting things (Building clocks of course!) and one being on a swing, all set in motion every ¼ hour. This in addition to the one dressed as a mountain climber who constantly climbed to the top of the building before abseiling down. All these bears were about 2M high so quite a show from the other side of the road where we sat sipping Tea while others stood in the middle of the main road peering up!

Bought postcards and looked through a few tourist shops, then went into the ‘House of a Thousand clocks http://www.hausder1000uhren.de/index.php?language=en that has the external automatons and had a good mooch round on the lower levels. Saw a few clocks that I liked but every time you spent more than 30s looking at one, this annoying little man would come and set it off for you whether you wanted or not! Such an array of such differing types of clock that I left totally confused as to what I wanted.

Luckily they have another outlet on the way back to our hotel with free parking at Gremmelsbach, we parked at this end of the building and went into the quiet shop.. only us

House of 1000 clocks gremmelsbach_gross

and a totally non pushy American lady who explained every thing carefully and gave me time to chose and buy the clock I wanted at my own pace.

Left there with a lighter wallet, having been charged in Sterling and with a very well packed clock (packed as for posting but sitting in the boot of the car) and returned to our hotel, passing the Open air museum on the way, our possible target for tomorrow.

Lost again , got flashed and the cable car.

Black Forest or lost.

Tuesday 31st May 2016

Set off this morning for the Cable Car up the Schauinsland mountain south of Freiburg. (Why does this spellcheck come up with Beefburger for Freiburg?)

Used Mrs Satnav again, this was ok until we were coming into the outskirts of Freiburg and took the wrong turn off a slip road and ended up coming down the Autobahn instead of the B road we were on!

No harm done, Mrs Satnav sorted us out and we continued through the city as the mountain is on the southern side via the suburbs.

When going through the city through the usual bewildering array of sign posts, Umwelt (low emission) Zones and differing speed limits I got flashed by a roadside street-light mounted thingy. Didn’t look like a speed camera though, so hopefully was taking a picture of our Umwelt sticker.

(We have a Green one for this car so can go right into City centres, the last car had a Yellow one which meant outskirts only.) If I get a Speeding ticket then so be it, Satnav said it was a 50kph area but could have been changed and by this time I was confused as heck, some 50, some 30kph but this was on an urban dual carriageway in a cutting through the city centre so I’d have thought 50 (30mph).

The route out of the City centre took us along a tram line so have to give way to trams, Not a real problem but I’m always a bit cautious of them. They’re big heavy and hard and it’s a long walk home.

Part of this road goes through a small Three arched gateway (presumably an old section of City wall), the centre arch that you drive through is only wide enough for one car and bang in the middle of the road so going out you have to give way to cars coming the other way. Not a problem in a left hand drive car as you can see what’s coming but all I could see was a stone wall!

Found the lower terminal of the Schauinsland cable car www.schauinslandbahn.de/en/, and parked up in an almost deserted car park.

Paid for our return fare, didn’t fancy the Scooter ride or Mountain Bike hire option for getting down, and we went and sat in a waiting cable car on our own. No-one else came so the doors closed and off we went, 750 Metres up over 3.6kM length Nice views, despite a little drizzle.

Got to the top station and exited the car to find there was a coach load of Kids there, luckily waiting to go back down, and we went to the Restaurant for a BFG and Tea. Yes, I know, we’re predictable but I don’t care and you don’t have to read this.

After the cobbles of Schiltach yesterday I was wearing my knee splint again so we decided not to go the further leg onwards and upwards to climb the viewing tower as Julie doesn’t like heights, and I wouldn’t have made it to the top!

Tried to get some descriptive photos from the Cafe Balcony, not very good, the white sky isn’t sky as such, it’s the bottom of the cloud layer that was only another few hundred feet above us!

Blackforest mountains from schaunislandbahn

Freiburg from the Cafe on the Mountain

That’s the City of Freiburg below us and the nearest southern hills of the Forest beyond looking North West towards The Rhine and Strasbourg.

A pretty stream on the way down, and that Pylon is viewed looking down from the Cable Car, can’t have been easy installing that one!

Went down the way we came up and sat and studied the map, didn’t want to go back into the City and risk getting flashed again, and wanted to come back a different route anyway so followed the road we were on over said mountain, past the upper station and down the other side!

Down to Todtnau, left through Feldberg to Titisee (via a diversion East past Neustadt (No it’s not the WRONG way, it’s just a habit I’m developing) then hung a Right up the B500 to come back via Triberg and Gutach.

Back in plenty of time for our meal but it felt like a very long day indeed.. Good though.