Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Wargame Wednesday: Liechtenstein

The pictures from a recent trip to Liechtenstein are related to my CH post here.

Border between Switzerland and Liechtenstein south of Balzers. 

Swiss border gate at St. Luzisteig Pass 

Update: When researching the War of the Second Coalition for a Wargame Wednesday post (will link to in on 12 DEC) I found that this narrow pass was strategically important one of the main north / south roads passed through it. The French under Masséna crossed the Rhine at Azmooz and then rushed to take this pass.

After the French defeat at the 2nd Battle of Feldkirch the Austrians soon retook this position.  I have come across references to a fort in this location and the two gates mentioned below may be part of the old fort.

Imagine the continuous ringing of cow bells while viewing this picture. Imagine loud cow bells as a lot more are grazing off camera.

The gate and facilities are about 1.5 km inside of Switzerland but the military aspect of this picture is too good to pass up.

Notice the old gate house purposefully left guarding the road, narrowing two lanes to one.  Further on, there is another small, one lane, gate. The glass windows to the right of the gate are a restaurant's but I believe the other buildings are a military facility, maybe for reserves.

The cows do a good job in keeping the ditch clear and any armored force trying to force its way between the cliffs off camera to the left and small mountain off camera to the right will have a hard time with that steep embankment up ahead.

A bunker complex is off camera on the mountain to the right.

Burg Gutenberg Castle
 More info here.

Cows roam the high mountains in summertime.

If you want to visit the ski resort you'll pass through the village of Steg. More in a future post but if you click on the picture for a larger view you'll notice the houses form a large rectangle with a common field in the middle. Not sure if this is the traditional layout of the village.

Update: while searching for maps I found a map from around 1816 that shows the houses in Steg making a rectangular perimeter. Guessing the homes were first places along the river closest to the main road then along a stream right below the mountain.  Still interesting that the field in the center was never built upon.

Steg circa 1816 - 1821

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