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Test facilities of the Wehrmacht pioneers

1st test road

In the Elbe meadows, the dirt road runs along an approx. 800 meter long and over 6 meter wide dam. The road surface changes every few meters. Large and small stone pavement as well as cat's head pavement were laid, interrupted by a few concrete slabs. The test road served mainly as a test track for the stationed armored troops and as an entrance to the barracks. The effects of loading from armored chains were tested by installing different paving sizes and types as well as different concrete qualities. The aim was to find the surface where the abrasion of the road surface, but also the armored tracks, is as low as possible.

​​It gets really interesting at the end of the test road. This is where the test bridges connect.  The test bridges have a total length of approx. 370 meters and a width of over 8 meters. On both sides, a 1 meter wide walkway leads over a total of eleven different types of bridges, made of reinforced concrete and iron, which also consist of several fields of different types and spans. The complete test bridge system rests on 29 reinforced concrete bridge piers of various designs. The bridge system can be divided into three sections. Starting with the approximately 110 meter long reinforced concrete bridges of various types, followed by an approximately 140 meter long section of metal bridges, which is followed by an approximately 120 meter long section made of the same reinforced concrete bridge fields. The bridge complex mainly served the pioneers of the Wehrmacht. Here the different construction methods of the bridges, but also their respective weak points, were shown in order to be able to destroy them as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, some of the bridges are in disrepair and are therefore cordoned off for safety. You can continue on a hiking trail to the right across the meadows towards the Elbe and from there you have a view of the bridges

2. Versuchsbrücken

2. Experimental bridges

​​ Behind it, the former military road and the hiking trail continue to a pontoon landing stage on the Elbe.  Behind the test bridges, an impressive walled wall with casemate-like bulges can be seen. Here pioneering exercises for taking fortifications were carried out.


The facility was used by the GSSD until the beginning of the 1990s and then by the Bundeswehr until 2006. Today the area is part of a biosphere reserve.


3. Versuchs-Kasematten

3. Trial fortresses

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