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Festung Quiberon 2008

Discussion in 'Living History' started by Skipper, Jul 29, 2008.

  1. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Quiberon used to be part of the Lorient pocket. It is situated at the end of a 15km penisnsula in the south of Britanny (France) between Vannes and Lorient. Besides the Isand of Belle Ile, a few miles south of it, made this area a natural fortress. There are beaches on the south and the east coasts, but the West coast called the Cote Sauvage is a natural wall with cliffs and rocks which added to strong streams and huge vawes, made any landing attempt almost impossible. Therefore this side is far less fortified.

    Logically the bottle neck is the strongest point with huge bunkers, arsenals, depots. These were defended by heavy guns that could reach up to the city of Vannes over the Bay, but stopping close attacks was easy with flame throwers. As a result the Free French which were posted at the pocket front from September 1944 until 1945 never got through this area, despite artillery support from Amercan troops.

    The germans lacked amnunition, petrol and food but they could trade with Bell Isle and sometimes St Nazaire and Royan (and food with the locals). However naval surface attempts were almost halted after 1944. On July 28th The Hannan attempted to sail from Belle Ile to Quiberon with a tank full of petrol, mail and French civilians among the German soldiers . The Hannan and the two fisherboats with light Flak were all sunk withing minutes by a Squadron of Mosquitos. I wil tell this story in a separate thread.

    For now I will post pictures and take you from the Bottle neck front line to the Cote Sauvage , then the south coast (with the town) and finally go back up via the West Coast. The pictures are all bunkers of the Atlantic wall built between 1942 and 1943.

    It took me quite a while to find the bunkers (four days) who were mostly buried, sealed, squatted, on private properties or destroyed. In fact I doubt that you could find some of them back even if you walk around the peninsula from A to Z (I did it) . I must admit I'm quite proud of some of the things I saw.

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    Here I am driving and realizing I"l lhave to leave the car and walk into the dunes.

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    A Tobruk turret: let's get closer!

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    Oh no! Sealed!

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    The second one got totally destroyed.... bummer but what's over there?

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    Hmm , looks like a huge underground complex. Let's find a place to get inside...
     
    jp pav, Za Rodinu, Slipdigit and 3 others like this.
  2. PzJgr

    PzJgr Drill Instructor

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    Hey, you left us hanging in suspense. Chop chop.
     
  3. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    [​IMG]

    A huge gun used to be rivetted to that circle. it looks all sealed again, but wait....

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    let's take the stairs and go into the pitch

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    Yes..some squatters broke the seal. I can go in there

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    Wow pretty spooky, the only light I have is my camera flash... Where shall I go: there are dark rooms everywhere?

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    German text in gothic! "Rauchen und Offenes licht Verboten!"
    "No smoking, no day light... oops I'm into a former amno depot....
    to be followed in my next posting :)
     
  4. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    [​IMG]

    I wonder what this room was, some amno storage I think.

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    "Gasreisraum"! this is the gasmask depot room. it even says the number of units that were stored in there. the room is empty.

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    More rooms over there. Let's see. ... Muckily there is a bit of daylight here which explains the scarce vegetation.

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    ".....Zger├Ąt." I wonder what the word ending with "Z" was? It is a storage rooms for tools (or machines?)

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    Pretty dark in there, but I got to carry on.....:cool:
     
  5. krieg

    krieg Ace

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    well done there mate the bunkers still look very sturdy
    did you come across any relics at all.. thanks for showing us your
    great time .. best mark:D
     
  6. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Yes, many relics: much too heavy to take home though.... I will keep you in suspense for a few hours until I scan more pictures.
     
  7. Mortman2004

    Mortman2004 Dishonorably Discharged

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    Awesome..... i am envious of you folks being so close to the ww2 battlefields you can just go visit.... One day ill do it
     
  8. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Glad you like it. As I told earlier, this is the first group of bunkers of the German front line. I have explored many more so if you come back on this thread on a regular basis you'll see new pictures and new information. Here is a map so you can see the natural fortress from the sky.

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  9. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    [​IMG]

    Time to follow another galery towards daylight.

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    Quite an exit, but in a distance I can see a second building! Bingo!

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    an even longer galery with rooms eveywhere!



    At this point the rooms seem empty, with the exception of modern junk from party makers

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    More rooms. Will I find something here? You will know soon enough. he.he!:D
     
  10. dgmitchell

    dgmitchell Ace

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    This is (i) amazing because you were able to get inside, (ii) very sad because of all the refuse and grafitti, and (iii) depressing because you got in and I only get to see pictures!

    Great job! (And watch out for needles left behind by drug addicts. Always a risk in a place like that!)
     
    krieg likes this.
  11. jagdpanther44

    jagdpanther44 Battlefield wanderer

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    Fantastic photos, Skipper.

    The interiors of the bunkers are in very good condition, I notice that (as with most bunkers I have been in) all the heavy steel doors are gone, the french scrap metal merchants must have made a small fortune after the war was over!
     
  12. Keystone Two-Eight

    Keystone Two-Eight Member

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    I agree with Mortman, I am envious of you guys for all the history that is steeped in the land. My wife and I are talking about a trip to europe for our 15 year anniversary, but we have to hash out the specifics, because I am going to want to go to almost every battle field I can.
     
  13. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    I thought the same thing too but I have found bunkers with huge doors that are still there, even better some endless metal racks for torpedo storage. There are still tons of metal in there.

    Thank you for all the kind commnets I will post more pictures today, there ares still a lot surprises to come. In fact there were so many bunkers that I could not visit them all and have kept a couple for a future trip. :)
     
  14. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    [​IMG]

    another opening





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    a ventilation chimney
     
  15. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Okay, here I am still looking around the bottle neck area. There are four huge bunkers left there. One is used as a Museum (I will post pics of that later) and the three others were major storage facilities. One was totally sealed or buried and I could not get in. The two others I COULD visit!

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    This one was apparently used by the museum some time ago and a door was left open , probably to prevent vandals from breaking it. This bunker is quite exceptionnal the first one with rails on the floor left and hinges still on several doors!

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    A lot of junk on the floor but this shows how big the galery is and how many rooms there are. Check out the rails on the floor.

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    I don't know what this was, possible some storage rack.

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    The same galery from the back side

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    detail of a huge hinge:eek:
     
  16. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    The next bunker was sealed, but still impressive

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    If I had more time I could probably dig a foxhole here and get inside this huge half buried bunker! :)
     
  17. krieg

    krieg Ace

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    nice going there skipper it is a shame that this big bunker wos sealed
    still in good con after all this time .. and again great pics
    cheers krieg
     
  18. jagdpanther44

    jagdpanther44 Battlefield wanderer

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    I was in a similar situation last year when I came across a half buried bunker amongst the sand dunes on Utah beach in Normandy.

    The entrance was just visible but would have required the moving of vast amounts of sand to gain access. However, I did manage to crawl in to another bunker where I found a few german 7.92 cartridge cases...:)

    Next time I'm there i'll make sure I have a shovel with me...;)
     
  19. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    [​IMG]

    Look at this HUGE one, possibly the biggest one If seen so far, there are fours big entrances with rails going in there. The roof is flat and big enough to play a soccer match on it and the whole thing is only half buried

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    The first door is sealed but notice the original Germans mtal door! They have just been sealed with welding, but they seem 100% authentic. Let's see if I can get in somewhere else? I have to get into this one!


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    The second entrance proves more successfull! It's half buried but big enough to get inside.

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    Storage rooms, no doubt I am in a former heavy shell storage bunker! Let's see if there is still some facilities in the rooms?
     
  20. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Heavy Shell racks! They are everywhere and they go very deep too! i wonder how many shells or torpedoes were hidden there?

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    Hmm, I wonder what this is? Rembember it's pitch dark in the rooms and the only time I see something is when there is a flash of light when I take pictures. Therefore I've chosen not to touch anything in case it might be dangerous. I believe the amno was removed after the war . :)

    [​IMG]
     

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