The S-Bahn detoured to Messe Sud, somewhere I’d never heard of before, then the ersatzverkehr bus dragged me the length of that absurd Autobahn cutting Grunewald, depositing me at the far south end – S-Bahn Nikolaisee. I decided to walk in the opposite direction to my usual.
My vague plan was to veer immediately towards the lake, then follow by or near the coast up till Havelchausee (another piece of tarmac through the forest), crossing over to continue by the lake and perhaps stumble by Kaiser-Wilhelm-Turm continuing up into the bulge of the forest between the north end of Großer Wannsee and Teufelsberg before heading east-ish to S-Bahn Grunewald. Mostly I managed that, though once past the Turm, having discovered blisters growing on blisters, curved more directly towards the finish.
The weather was close to perfect. Cold, grey occasionally split by shafts of turbulent sun, wet – not quite raining though – and tempestuously windy. As with my love of climbing, I don’t think too deeply about why my ideal hiking conditions verge on atrocious, and being wet, cold and suffering is sublime. Part of it is that there are simply less people, and so an according increase in wildlife activity.
I didn’t take many photos. These walks are in part just to enjoy the rhythm of moving across uneven ground surrounded by woods for hours on end until I ache a little, and so I only infrequently pause, though the idea of spending many hours photographing one small copse or gully is seductive. The light early on was beautiful, and most of the photos I took were in the first kilometer. They don’t capture though the ethereal glow beneath the turning leaves; at times it feels as though I am nowhere near a big city, and have arrived in some transcendental landscape.