Wilczy Szaniec

Entertainment & Arts

Europe, Poland, powiat kętrzyński

Wolf's Lair is the standard English name for Wolfsschanze, Adolf Hitler's first World War II Eastern Front military headquarters, one of several Führerhauptquartier (Führer Headquarters) or FHQs located in various parts of Europe. The complex, which was built for Operation Barbarossa, the 1941 German invasion of the Soviet Union, was located in the Masurian woods, about 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) from the small East Prussian town of Rastenburg, now Kętrzyn in Poland. The original bunker system was constructed by Organisation Todt, but the later planned enlargement was never finished; the expansion work was stopped only a few days before the Russian advance to Angerburg (now Węgorzewo), only 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) away. Hitler first arrived at the Wolf's Lair late on the night of 23 June 1941, and departed for the last time on 20 November 1944. Overall, he spent over 800 days there during that 3½-year period. The complex was blown up and abandoned on 25 January 1945, but many of the bunkers were so thick that their damaged walls and ceilings remain. The remains are located in Poland at the hamlet of Gierłoż (German: Forst Görlitz) near Kętrzyn.