How to find the source of a river? And, what’s more: how to be sure it is “the” source?
Setting off for the Road Trip Project’s “Danube Route”, Kenneth and Suzann started by looking for the source of the river (“the source of our trip”, as Suzann put it) in the pretty town of Donaueschingen (“let’s come here when we retire”, Kenneth suggested). With the help of the locals and tour-guide Barbara, they found… a mysterious pool of water on the grounds of the old castle.
One question may have many answers, however.
The pool at the castle is what could be called the historical source of the river. As early as the Roman era, as well as in myths, this mysterious karst spring (meaning that it’s connected to an underground system of water) on the Baar plateau between the Black Forest and the mountains where Donaueschingen was eventually built, has been considered the source of the Danube.
It is in fact the source of the “Danube creek” (Donaubach), which then flows below ground for a little while before contributing to the Brigach river, which in turn flows through Donaueschingen and, just outside the town is joined by the river Breg, forming, what could be called the geographical source of the Danube.
Two truths, not necessarily one right and one wrong.
Right from the start, at the source of their route, Kenneth and Suzann could appreciate that there may well be more than one way to reach a destination.
Adorning the pool on the grounds of the old castle is a statue depicting “the mother Baar” (the Baar is how the region around Donaueschingen is called) showing her “daughter”, the young Danube the way. Now it’s up to our travellers to map their own route.
What we know for sure it that the Danube route is on!