Two Dutch Girls on a Road Trip to Wiltshire

Road Trip 2017 (2) - Richmond to Chawton to Salisbury.

Good afternoon! Would you like to join me for the second part of my road trip in the South-West of England? A long time wish of my daughter...

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

The Hike 11 - Haringvliet Tour

Our Wetlands weather is acting up like the drama queen it is...Loads of rain, then sudden sunny spells and as soon as you've had a chance to dig out the sunglasses huge grey clouds blow in from the South-West again. In other words: a typical Dutch Summer.
They've even spotted a twister near Biddinghuizen yesterday!

For today's hike I remained close to home again. Saving up the cents for going to the English Peak District next month! I took a 1 1/2 hour walk along the Haringvliet, the closed off sea arm which turns into the river Nieuwe Merwede near Dordrecht.

The map shows my island - Voorne is part of three now interconnected islands Voorne, Putten and Rozenburg;  the Haringvliet is the body of water leading down from the left and the dam you can see there is the Haringvlietdam connecting Voorne to the island of Goeree-Overflakkee. You can also see that there used to be another sea arm above Voorne and Rozenburg,but that it is now almost totally filled in by artificial islands and harbours carrying industry: our famous Europort.

My hike took me from the North-West part of town (where I live) through the polders to the Haringvlietdam and then down along the water back to town.

The view from the Haringvlietdam towards the North Sea

Our seawater is not green nor blue, but greyish, due to the sediment on the bottom. It is cold, too, not reaching higher temperatures than 24 degrees in a very hot summer. Due to the weather we've been having it's barely 18 degrees now. But the quality has improved somewhat during the last twenty years, and we now regularly see seals again.

The Haringvliet with Goeree in the background

This is typical Haringvliet vegetation. We call it Kattenstaart, or cat's tail.

If you continue all along the Haringvliet, you eventually end up in Hellevoetsluis harbour, with its characteristic lighthouse.
I didn't this time, I stayed on the outskirts.

All along the path (only accessible to walkers and cyclists) there are many animals to be seen. There are the domestic sheep and horses, but more interestingly if you are in possession of a keen eye, you can spot the harrier and buzzard here, hunting for rabbits,  hares and mice and voles. Every dusk (and dawn) the deer come out to graze on the lush grass. The fox is elusive, and in the thirty years that I have lived here, I have only spotted it once!
Hence the photo underneath was taken somewhere else by my son. But I am always on the lookout for it, and for the equally elusive osprey. Today I spotted neither. The gnats did spot me though...

Photo by Wibe Koopman Photography

The nitty-gritty:
My hike took me 1 1/5 hours, and I walked 10 km.
This time I wore better pants - no chafing!
It was 18 degrees, mostly cloudy, with wind nnw 26 km/h, humidity 69%.

And that was it, folks. Hope you've enjoyed walking with me. Until next time!