Legends from our own lunchtimes

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Off-road Adventures.
Tuesday 25th September - Fintele to Stavele

The sign did warn su not to make any waves, that boats wider than four metres and deeper than one and a half were not allowed. When the man operating the lifting bridge ushered us through without question, we believed them all, partly because we are in Belgium  (where everything works).

We expected the six kilometres to Roesbrugge-Haringe to be narrow, perhaps challenging in a boat nearing the maximum allowable size for the channel, but we didn’t expect to have to engage four wheel drive and low range  for much of the way, nor to have to take a bit of a run at a couple of obstacles where the bank had collapsed to leave the net distance between it and the trees on the opposite bank uncomfortably squeezy.  Had there been just a little less water it may well have been called a road, at least then we could have sent someone ahead with a chainsaw to clear a path.   

We arrived at the end of apparently navigable waters and decided that with the river levels currently dropping after the recent rain, waiting till tomorrow to attempt a return journey as planned may be ill advised.   We therefore returned to Stavele where the amazing and eccentric waterside restaurant we had heard so much about was closed for the week.  We would have liked to have visited it too but it must have been expecting us.  Each day we are discovering that perhaps Belgium is just a teensy bit more like France than some would like us to believe! 


Ian said...

Wow - that was adventurous of you! Too bad about the restaurant - same for us on two successive years. But aren’t you being a bit harsh? At least they would have been open all through the August summer holiday season- unlike France where every restaurant is “en vacance” for the whole of the peak period!

bitingmidge said...

Yes Ian, I'm being way too harsh, although I'm not sure why there isn't a bit of tape and a "road closed" sign over the canal! We draw 720mm, 200mm at the turn of the bilge and seriously did have to bump our way through a few times - couldn't turn around of course because the canal maxes out at 8m wide! :-). All good fun, but we were wondering if we'd need a building permit if we got stuck!

Mayhem2 said...

... but you are an Oztralian, we are good at challenges, shame about the restaurant being closed though. : )

Vallypee said...

Sounds like just the waterway for Koos then. The shallower and trickier they are, the better he likes it. I swear he's missed his vocation as a dredger. We'll be there with the saw next year :)

bitingmidge said...

@Mahem2 - it looks as though we have a "restaurant reprieve" - we have been invited to join a bunch of locals there next weekend!

@Vallypee - yes it's the perfect waterway for you guys, and it's only shallow at the edges, but going round the trees and not hitting the edges is the real challenge!

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