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Auschwitz II - Birkenau

On the day of my visit, Birkenau was cold, wet, and foggy... creating an eerie atmosphere in the place whose very existence is a chilling reminder of the darkest evil of humanity. My initial awe of viewing such a historically significant site was quickly overtaken by a somber realization of the magnitude of the events that took place right where I was standing. I was amazed at the sheer size of the camp (much of which I never saw), made even more immense by the fog creating an effect of endless train tracks, buildings, barbed wire, and ruins. This was a place I will never forget.

Map of the Birkenau camp, with rough outline of my path. The pictures below follow this path.

Initial view of the camp from the outside

The gate house... one can only imagine the attrocities that went on inside of these gates

Just inside the gate, looking down the tracks that directed more than a million people to their deaths

Row upon row of barbed wire fences surrounded the camp and ran between the rows of huts

The living quarters for those who were "lucky" enough to pass the selection process after getting off the trains

The rows of buildings faded into the fog... I'm not even sure how far they went

Row after row of destroyed huts and other buildings extended in many directions

A few reminders that the barbed wire wasn't the only security in place

The disembarking station and a reminder of how the condemned were brought here

The women's quarters were separate from the huts that housed the men

Krema II - Ash pond, with memorial plaques

Krema II - Crematorium ruins

Krema II - Gas Chamber ruins

Krema II - Undressing Room ruins

The multi-national memorial set up just beyond the end of the train tracks

The English memorial plaque

Perhaps the most powerful and symbolic picture I've ever taken... literally the "end of the line"

2007 mojohaze™