An area of woodland in the north-east of the Barony of Hohensten, the Wichtel Woods is treated with great caution by those that live near its borders, as the wood exudes a strange, other worldly atmosphere that no one has yet been able to explain. Those who enter the wood often emerged changed, both physically and mentally, if they emerge at all….
A large portion of the Wichtel Woods is nestled on and against the lower slopes of the Felsspitze Mountains that flank the northern side of the Tafelland Valley, with the most southern part of the wood being on the mostly level area of the valley floor. Although the wood is not particularly large, especially by the standards of the sprawling Dunklerwald Forest on Hohensten’s border, there are several locally documented stories of people becoming lost in the wood and wandering in there for years at a time. The wood is well known for the mists that descend from the mountains above and that settle amongst the trees, often arriving without warning and lingering for days on end which certainly does not help anyone attempting to navigate the area. However, Hohenites that live near the wood speak of strange Fey beings that live amongst the trees, that trick those who enter and confuse them into losing their way. The wood itself is dominated by deciduous trees which is uncommon for the area, given that the harsh mountain climate is much more suitable for evergreen trees. Many of these trees are very large and venerable, with huge thick canopies covering a wide area around their trunks. This means that the trees themselves are quite well spaced apart, and the ground beneath the canopies is only capable of supporting plants that are suited to low light conditions. Ferns thrive particularly well beneath the trees, and grow indiscriminately on the forest floor, which can impede those travelling through the wood. One frequently reported, though yet to be reliably confirmed phenomenon of the Wichtel Woods, is that the trees and creatures that live within appear to have little regard for the changing of the seasons beyond the wood’s border. Those living near regularly report that part of the wood will apparently be in the grip of deepest winter, with all the trees having shed their leaves, whilst another part will be full of new growth and bearing fruit, whilst it is actually summer in the rest of the world.