ORL Day Six: Kleinkastell Pohl to Kastell Holzhausen

Our half-day’s decursio begins outside the reconstructed Kleinkastell at Pohl and takes us up a country lane, across open fields, the frontier just a line on the map. On our way we see one of the more unusual Limesweg waymarkers: a sign painted on the road.

Limesweg sign painted on road

Passing through the village of Holzhausen (birthplace of Nicolaus August Otto, inventor of the Otto engine), we are unable to resist a coffee in the local bakery/coffee shop/general store. As we exit the village, I note that the Limesweg route has changed yet again here (third visit, third variant!), helped by the fact that there is now a pedestrian walkway/cycle track all the way to the nearby roundabout, cutting out the need for threading through the village and surrounding field.

Soon, however, we leave the road, follow the line of an old narrow-gauge railway for a short distance, then enter woodland again, guarded by a piece of chainsaw art in the shape of a legionary shield.

Chainsaw art of a Roman shield

The Limes is in there waiting for us, bank and ditch in fine fettle amidst the trees and abundant leaf litter, and we follow it towards our destination, Kastell Holzhausen.

Ditch and bank in the Holzhausen woods

The fort is one of the most impressive sets of remains so far, with walls standing over a metre high, well preserved gateways, and an apsidal HQ building. Naturally, we are the only people there: we have yet to see another Limesweg walker who was not a local out for a stroll or somebody jogging or exercising their dog.

Part of the HQ building at Holzhausen

We take our leave of the site and go off in search of the coach and our packed lunch before making for Idstein. The showers were half-hearted, we were determined, and our morning was a rewarding one.