unique route with numerous switchbacks and curves and enormous gradients from Freital-Birkigt to Dresden-Gittersee
The Windbergbahn (also Sächsische Semmeringbahn, Possendorfer Heddel) is a standard-gauge branch line near Dresden and Freital, which is considered the first German mountain railroad. It was built in 1856 by the Albertsbahn AG as the Hänichener Kohlezweigbahn for the removal of the hard coal mined at the Windberg near Freital. After conversion to a public line and extension to Possendorf, it was also an important excursion railroad.
The upper section was shut down as early as 1951, and the remaining line was used until 1989 primarily for the strategically important uranium ore transports of SDAG Wismut. The remaining freight traffic ended in 1993. Since 2008, the remaining railroad facilities up to Dresden-Gittersee are owned by the Saxon Museum Railway Association Windbergbahn e. V., which uses them as a museum railroad.
The remaining buildings and facilities of the entire line have been listed as a cultural monument since 1980 due to their significance in railroad history.