the spring equinox
Ballon d'Alsace

At the spring equinox, if we observe it from the Ballon d’Alsace, the sun rises behind the Black Forest Belchen 70 km away

Anfang Mai / Beltene
Ballon d'Alsace
About 40 days after the spring equinox, beginning of the Celtic summer half-year, the sun rises in the east-northeast behind the summit of the Grand Ballon.
21.6 summer solstice
Ballon d'Alsace

At the summer solstice, the sun rises in the northeast above the Markstein, in the direction of the Petit Ballon

Anfang August / Lugnasad
Ballon d'Alsace
About 40 days after the summer solstice, the sun rises in the east-northeast, behind the summit of the Grand Ballon.
22.9. the autumn equinox
Ballon d'Alsace

At the autumnal equinox, if we observe it from the Ballon d’Alsace, the sun rises behind the summit of Schwarzwaldbelchen 70 km away.

Anfang November / Samhain
Ballon d'Alsace

About 40 days after the autumn equinox, beginning of the Celtic winter half-year. The three Celtic settlements Britzgyberg, Basel-Gasfabrik and Augusta Raurica are on the line of the sunrise.

21.12. Winter solstice
Ballon d'Alsace

The sun rises in the southeast behind the Tödi in the Glarus Alps, in between lies the Jura Belchen

Anfang Februar / Imbolc
Ballon d'Alsace
About 40 days after the winter solstice, middle of the Celtic winter half-year. The sun rises in east-southeast. The three Celtic settlements Britzgyberg, Basel-Gasfabrik and Augusta Raurica are on the line of the sunrise.

Todtmoos

The ever helpful “Mother of the Black Forest”

The ever helpful “Mother of the Black Forest”

An old legend tells of how Todtmoos was founded. The Mother of God is said to have appeared to the lay priest Dietrich von Rickenbach in 1255. She instructed him to take up life as a hermit at Schoenbuehl, between Wehra and Totenbach. Once there he was to fell a tree and construct a chapel out of the wood. Dietrich heard the calling and the chapel soon became a place of pilgrimage. By 1268 the wooden chapel had been replaced by a stone construction. In 1319 the church came under the administration of the monastery at St. Blasien which boosted its popularity amongst pilgrims. The first miracles were recorded in 1427, including the removal of the plague from Basle and Freiburg. There are also reputed to have been healing springs here. Little is known about the almost live size Pietà that hangs above the High Altar except that it was carved by a local craftsman around 1390. Today Todtmoos is not only a renowned spa town but remains popular as a place of pilgrimage, especially on Marian feast days. The most well known of these is the walking pilgrimage from Hornussen in Switzerland during Whitsun.