In earlier times, only a fraction of today's yields could be achieved through field farming. Therefore, all fertile land and thus also the mountain slopes were used as arable land. By plowing the steep mountain slopes, the soil slid further and further down to the field boundary. A continuous flattening of the arable land was the result. These arable fields are called arable terraces. The soil was collected at the field boundary, which was usually overgrown with a hedge. In this way, the so-called stepped ridges were formed, which marked a boundary of possession or use and could be up to several meters high. Occasionally, terraced fields were also deliberately created to improve the cultivation of the terrain on the slopes. The terraced edges typical of terraced meadows can be found in deep spruce forests as well as in grassland on many mountain slopes around Brilon.
Do you recognize the stepped ridges on this Weide?
Old topographic maps show that this area was used as a field until the 1960s. Therefore, the terrain edges are most likely the step ridges of an old terrace pasture. The time of origin of the terraced field cannot be dated exactly, but many terraced fields were already formed in the Middle Ages.