As we continue along the track of the Brockenbahn we can observe the characteristic vegetation of the Goethe Moor along the sides of the track. The plants of the high moors are especially sensitive to trampling, making the absolute protection of this area mandatory for its preservation. Too much damage was already done during the cutting of peat here between 1745 and 1776.
The cut peat was dried in a very complicated process and then charred for subsequent use in ore smelting. This was an effort to counteract the increasing shortage of wood for use in the mining industry. Forester Degen also pointed out the importance of the moors to the Harz water household to Goethe and awakened his understanding of this unusual environment.
The view across the Goethe Moor is splendid, especially in early summer when the cotton grass is in wooly flower.