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France 20 Years ago in... under Paris (and Vienna)

Doug

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Hi Guys 'n Gals,
Long time no see.
It was 20 years ago today that I was lucky enough to check out the Greenline under Paris just a month before the September 11 attacks happened and access was made tougher.

July 06, 2001.
More tourist activities.




Then some fun that evening with Ben & Tomas (from The Netherlands) Yanky Jim, Olrik, Lezard, Brewal, BHV and others as we check out the Greenline.


















We then walked through Paris in the pouring summer rain for an hour or so to get back to our motel. It was a great memorable night.
 
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Doug

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July 07, 2001.

The YouTube clip includes some footage from the 14th and is well worth a look (in my opinion)


We meet at a bar that seems to be full of cataphiles. It feels so much like a Cave Clan gathering. After a couple of hours we literally walk out the front door, cross the road and enter a manhole down a 10 storey ladder into what can only be described as dreamlike. For the next 12 hours we spent our time walking through hundreds of corridors in the 14th District, known to the cataphiles as the Grand Reseau Sud (Grand Southern Web). As I said, many hardcore explorers almost consider the 14th District for novices. Well I’m not a hardcore urbexor and if I lived in Paris I would probably spend the rest of my life exploring the hundreds of off shoots we walked by.

A few of my favourite shots from our trip into the 14th District…

We visited the Ossuaries of Montparnasse Cimitery and posed with some bones. It kind of seemed disrespectful, but the locals tried to assure us that it wasn’t.













A classic shot of Cro climbing into the German Army Bunker.



I’ll post these as thumbs as there are so many…



We even got to stop for an hour or so at a birthday party that was being held for one of our guides.

Next was The Mineralogical Cabinet. This is the last of six of these display rooms where they would show off the different types of stone available from the quarries. This room actually had had seating cut into the walls. Explorers often used this room to hang up hammocks and get some sleep. There was what looked like steps leading up to the roof. Each level would contain a different type of stone. In effect, it was a showroom for dodgy rock salesmen.





It was an amazing night!

 

Doug

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July 08, 2001.

We’re pretty much exhausted. We arrive at a T intersection and we all sit down while two of our guides look at a map they have spread out on the wall and discuss which was to go. Their voices become slightly elevated as one points to the left and the other to the right (the entrance we’d planned to use had been blocked so they were looking for another way out). Then one guide stomps off to the left before he comes stomping back a minute later and tuns the map the other way up and points to the right. They call out for us to follow and soon the end of an amazing night is over.








The YouTube clip includes some footage from the 14th and is well worth a look (in my opinion)

 

Doug

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July 09, 2001.

Some of the others guys go out exploring other places that I don’t do. On this day Cro, Ben, dTrog, Prowler and Jim ventured out to the NATO HQ then Ben, Cro and Tomas went out to something called The Floating Rock. There are other things that I have missed. I don’t have photos or videos of any of these expos. I kept doing random touristy stuff.

Below: At Burger King just before I lost my wallet with all my money and cards. Luckily Gill had a Commonwealth Bank Gold Card and saved my arse.

Right: A statue of a kid having its way with the turtle.






 

Doug

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SLoTH, dTrog & I arrive at our motel in Vienna. Then, having made no research at all as to finding The Third Man Tunnels, we looked at a map and walked to the closest canal. Naturally the Power of the Clan had lead us directly to the tunnel inlet, however there was a tour out the front so we followed the Wein Canal against the flow.



 

Doug

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July 11, 2001.
20 years ago today Sloth and I check out catacombs at St Stephens Cathedral while dTrog goes hunting for some Kraftwerk CDs.

[youtube]
That afternoon SLoTH and I checked out The Third Man Tunnels. Once again, soft by today’s standards, but wow!
I’ll do thumbs again as there are quite a lot of photos. The video is also worth a look and includes some footage from The Third Man.
[youtube]
 

Doug

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July 13, 2001.
On this day 20 years ago I checked out the Upper Wein Canal (upstream of the Third Man drain).
No photos but the video covers the walk pretty well and is an added bonus for Kraftwerk fans ;)
 

Doug

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July 14, 2001.
That’s pretty much the end of my exploring. I went and checked out the theme park with the Ferris Wheel that is seen in The Third Man movie. I think it’s the oldest Ferris Wheel in the world. There were two and they were bombed in the war and they used the parts to make one good one. I don’t even know if anything in this paragraph is true or not :)
The third minute is NSFW

July 17 to 21, 2001.
Spend some time in Munich with no Urbex (yeah, I’m crazy) and met up with Gilligan again.
Gilligan rocks up to find the motel has a lock out after 10pm. He tries calling out to me and some guy throws Gill down a blanket and he sleeps on the door step. Meanwhile I’m inside with my head or arse in the toilet with gastro. We both spend a couple of days recovering (Gill still had his virus that saw him miss things like The 14th District).

July 22, 2001.
7 train trips across Germany on a Vockender ticket

July 23, 2001.
Maastricht. Gilligan and I accidentally walk into Belgium and have a beer.
 

Doug

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July 24-27, 2001.
Rotterdam. I like this place.

July 28-29, 2001.
I also like Den Haag too. I had a chat with an old local who seemed friendly until I got used to his accent (sounded South African) and realised he was telling me how “we whites were the supreme species (he said that) on the planet”. I left him yabbering away as I headed to the beach. He’d be dead by now.

July 30, 2001.
Back to Rotterdam to meet Gill.


Aug 1 to 5, 2001.
Spend 5 days checking out Amsterdam.



Aug 6, 2001.
My only memory of Ho Chi Minh City was the traffic!

Aug 7, 2001.
I get back to Melbourne thinking that I could never get interested in Australian drains again.
That night I went and spent a couple of hours up at The Pillars in Northcote Golf Course Drain. I missed my good old faithful Melbourne drains :)

THE END
 
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