During World War II, the Wehrmacht produced many of their explosives at a factory in the town of Bobingen in southern Germany. Run by the arms company Dynamit AG, the Fasan explosives factory was built in the 1930s. In 1939, a new facility was built in the forest near the village. The factory is long abandoned, but its crumbling walls still stand among the trees, where they are being slowly reclaimed by nature.
The original factory, known as Fasan I, was located on the eastern bank of the river Wertach. The secondary facility, Fasan II, was across the river in the western area, a railway bridge that can still be seen today was built. The two plants were scattered across the premises to avoid larger damages in case of an accidental explosion, and also to hide it from aerial reconnaissance by foreign adversaries.
Fasan I consisted of 65 buildings and was originally only a testing facility designed to check out a large-scale industrial production of explosive materials, Fasan II consisted of only 25 buildings for the later mass production. During World War II, Fasan was used to produce hexogen, an organic compound that was used to create powerful explosives. In 1945, up to 300 tons of hexogen were produced per month at Fasan.
After the arrival of the U.S. Army in 1945, the factory was closed down. Today only one of Fasan II’s factory halls is publicly accessible—the remains of Fasan I are located on private property.
Since then, nature has taken over of the former factory hall: Trees grow up from the floor through the ceiling and cover the roof. Graffiti covers the walls and the explosive-resistant concrete partitions that divide the hall into three sections. The first two are partially exposed by daylight through the broken ceiling. For the third section a flashlight is required, especially as sometimes it is filled with ground water.
Know Before You Go
You can reach the remaining factory hall from the Wassertretanlage und Barfußpfad Wehringen (Kneipp water treading pool and barefoot path) if you walk southwards on one of the two forest paths approximately 100 meters. Please be cautious of your own safety and the natural environment.