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GES112 - NSA Teufelberg

This building and the hill it's built on didn't exist as of 1945. However with the ravages of the final days of WWII, Berlin was a mass of destroyed buildings which needed to be cleared away. A decision was taken by the allies to pile up the rubble to form a hill on top of the former Naval Military Academy which they gave up trying to destroy. The Teufelberg hill at 80m, is the highest around and the Americans subsequently found it to be the perfect location for a listening post, starting being built in the late 1950s. It was abandoned in the 1990s after the end of the cold war. It now floats between various ideas for something new, between developers and Berlin local government.

I'd already had a busy day checking out GES118 and GES119, and raced to the outskirts of Berlin and the Grunewald Forest that forms a vast green swathe around Berlin's western borders. A road that runs through the forest and the foot of the Teufelberg hill, was full of runners and cyclists in the warm evening sun. Parking up at the gates, no messing about. I went in search of a way through the fence. I didn't have to search for long, as the fence had seen quite a few people attempting and succeeding to get through. A suitably hacked bit of green mesh fence provided my way in. I was then in a small patrol path, with another green mesh fence on the other side. A short walk provided the next hole in the fence, and I was in. Any pretence that the main building isn't phallic, should be disposed of, as it has to be the taken into consideration!

The first building I came to was the smallest of the domed buildings. Internally it was filled with clothes, records and other personal items. The buildings had been taken over by squatter types, who were clearly not about. Hence the Project Teufelberg banner in the pic below. The section on the top was like a rather cool tent. However I pity those that live here, as the mosquito population were rather large and certainly active.

Climbing amongst people's clothes and belongings seemed a bit odd, and I was wary of bumping into an irate squatter type as I climbed. However at the top I found no resistance. Across the site I could see the next building to target. Slightly higher than the one I was in, and connected to a large low roofed building. Most of the items on the ground are connected to the squatters, including some rather good iron sculptures.

At the top of the second building, the view of the forest was pretty cool over the top of the building i'd just climbed.

Access involved little more than a long ladder climb, although I subsequently found a central stairwell but not as fun.

In the second building's ground floor, like most of the building's it was pretty gutted, with valuable and sensitive items removed. This pair of shredders were still in a good state surprisingly. The NSA operatives would shred the sensitive documents here. There are two to ensure if one breaks there is a back up. Note the pipe that goes through the wall at the back of the machines...

...this leads into a pulping facility on the back, which turns the pulped sensitive material into blocks after treatment. The pipe that goes through the wall goes to the top of the silos.

I then climbed an external staircase into the next building with the genital like adornments on the roof. The staircase ended after a few flights and went into the gutted building. Pretty much every wall was covered in graffiti.

On the main buildings roof I started to bump into the many people that had come out here to enjoy the sunset and camaraderie of fellow 'daredevil' people. Booze, fags and drugs in most people's mind. One chap in his forties was happy to walk around naked, I wish he hadn't.

The tallest structure on the site is this tower with football fixed on top. It used to be fully covered in the tough fabric used, but some people have gone around cutting off the lower section of the coverings.

The Pipe Ninja surveys the views from the 3rd floor of the tower. The views really made this place and it comes with my high recommendation because of them. That and the chilled out cool people hanging out here, nudey man excepted.

Young people chill out watching the sunset, most of whom were American. Some French, and some native.

One of the 'balls' of the genital roof adornments and Berlin beyond.

Pretty much the whole site seen from the top of the tower. The first tower I visited is hidden by the second building i came to on the centre right.

Zoomed view of Berlin, it's various towers sticking up. It's not really a city of skyscrapers.

The top of the tower had a solid wall on the top, as such it provided many echoes to every noise or vocal emission one made. The group standing up are doing a group 'ahhh-ing' recital. I hope to put up some video footage of this one day, when I learn how to edit video.

As the sun set, everyone left, and so did I. Picking up some mosquito bites on the way. At the car, three Germans asked for a lift, so I was happy to oblige. They were students from out of town. I amused myself by driving on the wrong side of the road (the roads were empty in the forest) until they 'reminded' me I was on the 'wrong' side of the road. Jeremy Beadle look out! I then found a suitable spot near the car rental place, and went to sleep. Procarhoboing!