Saturday, February 9, 2008

Triberg im Schwartzwald

Triberg is a small city in the central part of the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) in Germany's southwestern most Land of Baden-Württemberg. It is a major tourist destination, with several stores selling cuckoo clocks, wood carvings, and other such souvenirs from this famous region. Despite all of the tour buses and shops, this area is still quite beautiful with its sparsely populated dark forests and low mountains.
Triberg is a small city with just a few thousand inhabitants located about halfway between Freiburg and Rottweil. Like many other Black Forest and Schwabian towns, Triberg is a major tourist destination during the summertime, but the remnants of a huge Christmas Market and confetti and Fasching banners suggest that it also is a destination for winter holidays as well.

Although the city is full of stores that feature elaborate wood carvings and cuckoo clocks that attract many tourists, the main attraction is the series of waterfalls that pass over rocky cliffs surrounded by fir trees on the edge of the town center. This waterfall is supposed to be the highest in Germany, but it is not a Niagara Falls or one of the long feathery cascades that are common in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge or in Hawaii. Rather it is a series of twenty to thirty foot cascades one on top of the other leading down a steep descent into the valley where the city is located. In the winter, the falls are often graced with ice, and the otherwise easy access trail is covered with a thick layer of ice.

Here are two images of the icy waterfall, supposedly the highest in all of Germany. The first shows the fast flow of water into a deep pool before cascading down another series of icy drops, over smooth rocks:

This image reflects the moss covered rocks surrounded by green fir trees. I imagine that the area around this waterfall is cool from spray even during the summer months.

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