“Drunk” forest

The well-known “drunk” or “dancing” pine wood is located in national park “Curonian Spit” in the Kaliningrad region. The trees were landed in 1961 within the program for strengthening of sand. After a while it became visible that the grown-up pines on a small site have an unusual form – their trunks twist in spirals and rings.

There are few beautiful legends about Dancing forest. According to first, long time ago wizards were living here. They could not agree who of them was owning the trees, which resulted in devastating battle that curved the pines. According to another legend,  a girl, who fell in love with the prince, were living there. Once she played so beautiful melody on a magic harp that the trees could not stand and began to dance. Third legend says that witches who flew to this place on coven turned into these pine trees …

Ancient Prussians believed that trees, twisted into a ring are the gates to the world of spirits. If you climb through that ring, you can get rid of the diseases, get an energy boost and supernatural powers, as well as live one year longer. This “features” almost ruined the Drunk forest: there were so many people who wanted to get  “medical treatment” from tree rings and spirals that many trees were left without bark and almost died. Nowadays, it is allowed to walk only on the special paths.

There is a set of versions why the pine wood became “dancing”. However, which one is true, has not yet been determined. Scientists, who do not believe in mysticism, have the following assumptions: the winds blowing in the same direction and a butterfly-pest, which put the larvae in buds of young shoots. But these versions do not explain why only a small area of the forest is curved and other nearby pine trees are straight. Another hypothesis is the movement of sand. Dune, on which the Dancing Forest is situated, has a clay base under it, which is explains the movement of sands. Planted pine trees here have tried to grow evenly, but they had to adjust every time due to the ground motion.


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