Oct 25, 2010

Up above…

The Kemmelberg is a 156m high hill near Kemmel (municipality of Heuvelland) in West Flanders, Belgium. Just as many other hills in the area, its origin lies with a formation of dunes from way back when the North Sea reached that far inland. The sand from these dunes was rich in iron, and the resulting sandstone withstood centuries of erosion.

A Celtic community was established on the hill some 2,500 years ago. They built a fort an conducted trade with the Romans. In present days, the Kemmelberg is best known for its steep cobbled road over the hill, often a decisive factor in bicycle races, especially in the wet.

On and around the hill, there’s plenty of woods and fields, even a couple of vineyards. Hikers are treated to spectacular vistas, reaching even into the north of France.

But all is not as quiet and innocent there at it may seem… 
During World War I, the area was an important battle site. In April 1918 the hill was taken by Germans, later recaptured by the allied forces in September at the expense of high human losses.

But the real secrets lie well underneath. Stay tuned for a next post to discover!

Gear notes: D700, 24-70/2.8
The last image is an early trial of the new Nik HDR Efex Pro.

Click on the image(s) to see a larger version

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