VALLO ALPINO - BLOCKADE
«Vallo Alpino» («Alpine Wall») Eastern Front – XXIII. Sector – Subsector XXIII. B.
Blockade (Sbarramento) "Monumento" («Kacje ride») - Official designation «Papa»
Situated in the vicinity of border crossing on
Postumia - Planina road, overlooking a straight part of this otherwise
rather winding road. It includes two separate underground forts, and
a number of field-type MG and HMG nests. Since the main road represented
the sole possible direction for tank push in this area, there were no
separate AT walls and mouts – the fire from the forts controlled
every access way.
Fort No. 1: W side of the road, above the sharp right turn towards Planina, consisting of four combat blocks: two HMGs in steel casemates flush with hill slope, two HMGs in armoured steel turret, and one concrete block armed with 57/43 mm Nordenfelt AT gun. This combat block also has a photophone for communication with nearby fort No. 2, as well as photophone oriented towards fort No. 1 of blockade «Ghermada». Underground (logistical part) including dwelling casernes, separate ammo, food and drinking water storages, radio room and two safety exits. Generator room situated near the entrance, air regenerators and gas-proof doors for anti-gas defence. Judging from the inscriptions hardly visible on the walls of the underground part of the fort, there must have been two «Centro`s» that together made this fort: one consisting of the steel turret, and the rest of the armament belonging to the other «Centro».
Note: the extent of destruction of this fort makes its original layout rather hard to guess. So, the second HMG position could also be a steel observatory cloche (judging by the remaining anchoring bolts, vertical rather than angled).
Fort No. 2: N side of the road, partially underground
and partially a massive concrete structure, armed with two HMGs behind
either «three parts armours», or «plates with minimum
forward thickness»: both controlling the road towards the border,
flanking the AT block of fort No. 1. Caserne with ammo, food and water
storages, photophone for communication with fort No. 1. Air regenerator
and gas-proof doors for anti-gas defence, separate safety exit. Generator
room situated near the entrance.
Present state of the forts:
situated near the main road, they are reasonably
easy accessible, but heavily damaged. Fort No. 1 has its steel casemates
blown up, steel turret removed, and AT block completely destroyed. The
only possible access to this fort remains the former main entrance,
but it is almost completely obstructed by stone and concrete debris,
making squeezing through the (worthy) price to pay in order to gain
entrance. Vertical access ducts of safety exits are dangerous abysses.
Logistical parts in reasonably good shape, but the sewer ducts under
the gallery floors now without any protective cover, so visitors have
to be careful. Access ducts leading towards destroyed combat positions
blocked with debris. Fort No. 2 is in equally sorry state, outside concrete
combat part almost completely destroyed, but it is possible to use the
former weapon opening to access the inner works. Some inscriptions remain
on the walls, one «Arma No. 30» obviously designating one
of the fort`s HMGs within the fire system of this sector of the border
defence. The collapsed ceiling of the former generator room reveals
the original excavation. The main entrance, although partially blocked
by debris, is also a possible way of access inside the fort.
APPROXIMATE PLANS & PICTURE GALLERY