EUROPEANS PRIMEVAL FORESTS

Far from sterile soils, monospecific woodlands and aligned plantations, this series of photographs illustrates vivid, dynamic, and vast forests growing in European National Parks. 


This approach attempts to reconnect us to the richness of these untouched places. For this ongoing project I left Switzerland in July 2021 by bicycle and traveled 4’000 km to discover the National Park Bayerischer Wald in Germany, the Krkonose Mountains National Park in the Czech Republic, the Roztoczanski and the Bieszczady National Parks in Poland, and the Slovensky Raj National Park in Slovakia.


The limitations of only a few days available at the parks and very little photographic equipment in my panniers, allowed me to capture these raw landscapes in a pure way.


Wilderness


The wild canyons of the Slovensky Raj National Park reveal a unique characteristic of raw nature.


Rise up


As strong winds blow over the peaks of the Bieszczady National Park a single tree arises from the alpine meadows and defies the harsh conditions. It stands before the infinitely large forest of the Carpathian Mountains.


Meander


In a silent valley of the Krkonose Mountains National Park a river draws its natural lines through the vast landscape.


New life


As the life of one tree comes to an end at the National Park Bayerischer Wald, it becomes home to insects and feeds birds. Slowly their offspring follow their steps.


Natural balance


The dead wood in ancient forests as those of the National Park Bayerischer Wald contribute a crucial role for the growth and balance towards a healthy ecosystem. It offers habitats to numerous species such as fungi.


Young forest


The younger part of the Roztoczanski National Park is covered with dense fir forests and allows to fully immerse into the play between light and shadows. From time to time the sound of a woodpecker breaks the silence.


Symbiotic life


Known for its great forests the Bieszczady National Park shows beautiful symbioses between trees.


Vast horizon


Above a ridge line of the Krkonose Mountains National Park fog encases the dense and shoulder high forests. Only a glimpse reveals the vastness of the horizon.


Ancient fir tree


This majestic fir tree of the National Park Bayerischer Wald is over 400 years old, has a circumference of 6 meters and exceeds the surrounding trees with an impressive height of 50 meters.


Two old friends


These beech trees are among the oldest trees of the Roztoczanski National Park.


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