From Griebnitzsee station, I head towards the Teltowkanal, the waterway which flows south of Berlin, connecting Potsdam with the south east of Berlin, ending between Köpenick and Grunau. The wall followed a particularly crazy, winding route here, with some parts of the canal between Griebnitzsee and Dreilinden forming the border between West Berlin and Brandenburg, while others were firmly within West Berlin.
It should actually be possible to walk to here from Wannsee, through the woods to the north, but not being sure just how much of a walk I was feeling like, I decided to play it safe and do it this way (there's something else nearby which I could have gone to see instead if I'd felt like a shorter walk...but more on that later). It doesn't feel like I've been walking for long before my destination is in sight, though:
It would be hard to tell the difference between this picture and ones of parts of the Grand Union Canal in London, even down to the rather boring motorway bridge. The rather boring motorway bridge is the interesting bit, though...
At the top of the path that leads up the bank towards the bridge is this old rest stop:
If its name doesn't give the game away, perhaps what's up on the bridge will:
There's some tarmac up here, with some markings on it. One side says PKW (Personenkraftwagen - another word for a car):
The other side says BUS and underneath, LKW (Lastkraftwagen - truck), both partially obscured by ice:
This is the remains of the original Checkpoint Bravo. Because of the strange course of the border around here, the Autobahn crossed East German territory for another 2km from here before reaching West Berlin again. At the end of the 1960s, the GDR changed the route of the Autobahn, so that it led into West Berlin after the Drewitz border control point, creating a need for the new Checkpoint Bravo which you saw in the previous post.
Three flagpoles - one for each ally - mark the point where the checkpoint hut stood:
The cold air brings a heavy stillness with it. The whisper of the nearby Autobahn seems like a ghostly echo of the thunder of cars which would once have filled the air here.
Heading back, the sound of the Autobahn is replaced by a mysterious low rumble. I look into the distance to see a huge barge emerging through the mist from around the corner.
As the barge makes its way towards Köpenick, I turn off back towards Griebnitzsee station...though there's one other place I'd like to look at first.