Day One – Obernburg to Berlin

by bretzelitos

An easy travel day at first, there are loads of trains going to Berlin somehow. So this was my first choice. However, it was also one of the few days in which I had the idea of changing the train twice to reach the target.

No worries – it went exactly as you would be able to think about it: re-planning, re-engineering of the trip.

But first to the start.

My dad took me to the train station of Obernburg-Elsenfeld at 10am. The first Regionalbahn train arrived on time and all were happy. First change was in Aschaffenburg to get the train to Frankfurt – the train station that I needed to join to be able to board the train to Berlin. Still no issue so far – all on time, all happy.

Then I got a notification that my booked train to Berlin is 40 minutes late. OK, I thought, might happen, not a big deal. But I did not know the real cause of it – no obvious reason was given… I learnt about it eventually while having a little munchie in a MITROPA bistro in Frankfurt Central Station just before midday. Suddenly, the train was canceled – there has been a derailment of a regional train which blocked two of the high speed train tracks close to Mannheim. Hence, I have canceled my reservation and was looking for a new connection right away. Luckily, another Intercity Express train was 45 minutes late, coming from Switzerland and going to Berlin. It intended to leave at 1113, originally prior to my arrival in Frankfurt. It left at 1200 with me – not via Leipzig, taking the new high speed tracks to Berlin, but via Hildesheim, Braunschweig and Wolfsburg, taking the traditional high speed route through Germany.

But just hold on a second – this was not the path that we took at the end!

Just after the train station of Kassel-Wilhelmshoehe, we received some pieces of information via public announcement in the train – starting with “Wir bitten um Ihre Aufmerksamkeit”. Generally, if something starts as such – it is important and you better listen. The tracks via Hildesheim and Braunschweig were unusable – as the high tension power line above the tracks just failed in parts of this area. Pretty clear – no power, no trains – especially if you are in an high speed electrical one. We were eventually deviated via Hannover Exhibition station – putting another 10 minutes of delay to the account. The train conductor did really a good job by shortening the time where ever he has been able to do it – full acceleration and full brakes applied.

Expected in Berlin Central Station at 1530 – this was the target arrival time of ICE372 – we arrived finally in Berlin at 1615. Interestingly, this was 15 minutes earlier than the originally planned time with ICE690. Hence nothing to complain about.

I took it easy with deboarding my train and arrived at my hotel close to Berlin Central Station 20 minutes later.

After short refreshments and a short shower – we had 36 degrees Centigrade outside temperature – and receiving my Berlin travel pass, I went to have a look what my country’s capital can show me.

So please have a look at the attached photos.