Reißzug, Festung Hohensalzburg, Salzburg, Austria

Cable Hoist, Festung Hohensalzburg, Salzburg, Austria

A marvel of Renaissance engineering, the Festung’s “cable hoist” was put into production when Prince Archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach was doing renovations (~ A.D. 1496-1504). 300,000 shingles had to be ferried up the hill to cover the roofs of the buildings.

Originally run on sleighs, the Reißzug was soon converted to work on wooden rails via a 300-meter-long-rope. People or horses powered the mechanism, hauling supplies in small cars through five concentric defensive walls. Thanks to its stalwart service, it is the oldest known funicular in the world.

Sound of Music Bonus: The Reißzug begins at Nonnberg Abbey, the place where Maria Von Trapp was a postulant. The convent appears in early scenes of the movie.