Dragon Canyon

Because of the Corona pandemic we struggled with our vacation planning for the summer. We ask ourselves what is the best target or do we stay at home the whole weeks? Because of the fact that we own a camper we decided not to stay at home, but also not to leave Germany. The plan was a hiking tour through our low mountain landscapes. Wo wanted to start in the Thuringian Forest with various stops. Our target was the Saxony Swiss because we want to hike many trails there. Last year we were in the Saxony Swiss and had no more time for some trails we wanted to go. So that was the plan. 
We started our tour on a Wednesday evening after work. We wanted to drove to Eisenach and next morning we wanted hike through a trail which is called Dragon Canyon. After a 3 hour drive we arrived in Eisenach and we found a park area close to the Wartburg. The Dragon Canyon is also close by so this place was perfect for a night. When we arrived we eaten and because of no plan we decided to went on the trail immediately. In summertime the sun goes down late so we thought we had enough time for the canyon. For safety I put a headlight in my backpack. At the end this was very clever, because we fooling around and gave ourselves a lot of time. 
As we entered the canyon I was disappointed because I thought that there were really narrow trails between rocks. First there was a normal way which looked like a highway for tourists. Later the canyon become really, really narrow. It starts with a small waterfall and few stairs. And suddenly you find yourself on a grid above a small stream between walls of rocks. It was already  dark in these narrow tracks, because there was no chance anymore for the sunlight  due to few centimetres place between meter high rocks. This was also a problem for photography. I had to put the ISO very high to made photos out of hand. I had a tripod with me but not time for composing. I was not alone and didn't want to invest too much time. It was getting darker and darker. 
As we passed the canyon we had to choose how we go back to the camper. The longer way was arround a hill which needed more time. We decided to use the same way as we came. This was really funny because meanwhile it was dark night. We had one headlight and our track was narrow as it was before. To go through the canyon was now like a ball in a pinball machine. Oh boy, we loughed a lot. It was dark like a bears ass is a German phrase and it fits perfect in these situation. Now we had definitely time because it will not getting darker so we did some photos and tried some light experiments. It was very late as we arrived the car, so the first day was over and we went to bed. 

The Dragon Canyon is an old hiking trail. In 1832, Gottlob König, a major forest economist and forest scientist in the 19th century accessible the trail for hikers. This was a lot of work I think because large parts of the trail are grids above a stream between rocks. It was definitely not easy to build this, especially in 1832. When you visit Eisenach take your time for a hike through the trail and maybe visit the well known Wartburg. We decided to didn't visit the castle because of Corona. We will come another time. However not only due to the Wartburg. The whole area is wonderful and there are many trails. Also the Rennsteig, a well known long range trail through the Thuringian Forest passes here.