Bohlen EDOE

Here's a piece I wrote about going to Bohlen en route to Poland in 2005. I doubt that much has changed.

"This route would take us over the old frontier between West and East Germany – not much sign of this after unification, the barbed wire and watch towers have gone – and we would make for Bohlen EDOE where there was said to be a flourishing microlighting activity. This route, north of Erfurt, went through an area marked with a very faint dotted line on the chart as a Transponder Mandatory Zone. No one knew exactly what this meant at the time, of course we now have them in the UK and the Germans obviously had them before us. Some pilots at Marburg gave us the impression that they were still “voluntary” – we had no transponders, so we paid some lip service by making a partial diversion and just clipped the corners. Not to be recommended these days.



"Approaching Bohlen, a lunar landscape was spread out before us. The area around Bohlen, which is south of Leipzig, turned out to be one vast open cast mine, quite common in old East Germany, accompanied by huge and belching chimneys, but the airfield itself was deserted. Whilst on the ground there we noticed a small town called Colditz only about five miles off the track of our next leg. The famous castle at Colditz was visible from some distance as we approached the town and we all took some superb photographs of this iconic place, in my case at 500 feet AGL with the door open. If we hadn’t stopped at Bohlen we would have missed Colditz altogether. "



Bohlen could be used as a base for visitng Leipzig which is a few miles to the north, or perhaps by road to Colditz although that looks more like 15 miles. There are no other convenient airfields for Colditz though.



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