Ober Doneau

After some steep grades (nearing 20 percent) climbing out of the Rhine watershed, and beautiful farm country with expansive views, we plunged into the Black Forest upper Doneau drainage. I’d always wondered why this part of Germany was so named, and it became obvious. We went from mostly decidous trees and open land, to steep hillsides and dark conifers, in minutes of high speed descents.

The Doneau here is not the Blue Danube that most people know. It is narrow, shallow with rapids and small waterfalls. It is pure and clear, not blue. We’ll see why it became blue after a few hundred kilometers.



The villages we’re modest in size and old, dating to the middle ages in the center. Yet they always had a few guest houses, a cafe or to and a small store. Mid mornings found us at an outdoor table with dark rich coffee and a pastery.


The Doneau stays small despite being fed by the streams of the Mountains. The reason is the limstone/karst allows it’s water to be lost to the much lower Rhine. Near the point we crossed watersheds, the two great rivers, one bound for the North Sea, the other to the Black Sea, are about a dozen kilometers apart

This loss of water was a boon for us. The beauty lasted for days. The forest was deep, filled with song birds and mystery, the Doneau filled with fish and dancing light.

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