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Report - Fort du Haut-Buc


Germany is the "wurst"
Regular User
Took me a few days to put these up, as I spontaneously decided to go out last night to check out an old power plant on the outskirts of Paris, hop the fence, realize that there was a security guard coming right at me, realize that said security guard had a very large, very active rottweiler accompanying him, decide to bite the bullet and chat him up, end up playing with the rottweiler and having the security guard show me around the place, and utterly, totally failing to get inside the main turbine hall, then getting home again and realizing that I'd left my lens hood screwed on half-assedly and spending an age trying to figure out how to crop the pictures I did manage to get just so...

Right. Rottweilers are big dogs.

Last Sunday morning I visited the Fort du Haut Buc - for those of you Englishers who are inexplicably unfamiliar with the intricacies of French late 19th century military fortification technology and architecture (which honestly does not speak well for your education system, EVERYONE knows about French late 19th century military fortification technology and architecture) this was one of a network of fortifications built after the success of Paris' defenses in the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian war in fending off German attacks.

Make whatever stupid comments you will about French success in war, they did know their forts. To my knowledge, since the age of Vauban, very very few of their strongholds have ever fallen to direct attack, and those of you who've had the fortune to visit parts of the Maginot Line will readily understand why the Germans wisely decided to go around it.

Haut-Buc is a multilayered compound facing South-East (don't laugh, several of the major German assaults in 1871 came from that direction), mainly brick, built into a hilly area now totally overgrown with forest. It's fenced in, and was appropriated by Thomson-CSF (now Thales Group) at some point for a small plant of sorts, ringed by electrical wire, and now thoroughly decayed.

I kept expecting to be intercepted by gendarmes/military types and told to piss off, as they apparently hold a lot of live-fire exercises there, and many of the French explorers as of late appear to have had little luck getting in despite the fact that the fence is pretty easy (thanks, OT!)

As a result, it's in reasonably good repair, much better than could be expected of something so long derelict and so close to Paris, but pretty much empty. Even the paintballers who regularly go play there have left it in a modicum of good repair. I didn't go into the East side, as it was barricaded and I was running low on time, but spent a fair amount exploring the main fort building and surroundings.

I won't include the Thomson plant pics here, because they're pretty bog-standard abandoned factory fare, if you're desperately curious you can have a look on my Flickr gallery

Please excuse the occasional aesthetic lapse in judgment, I decided to start putzing around with HDR, with questionable results.














More pictures at kosmograd dot net. Photo comments on my Flickr gallery.

P.s.: I know you're all a bunch of graffiti haters, so I'll just hide a plug for this awesome gallery I found down here. Some of them really are very good.

P.p.s: Obligatory spiral staircase for xan_asmodi:



Oxygen Thief

Staff member
an old power plant on the outskirts of Paris, hop the fence, realize that there was a security guard coming right at me, realize that said security guard had a very large, very active rottweiler accompanying him
St Denis? You're lucky, we had two rottweillers.