Netherlands inland waterway trip – Gorinchem to s’Hertogenbosch
|Heading up the Waal River|
Monday 1st to Wednesday 3rd September 2014
Monday was a lovely day – fine and clear and warm with very little wind – ideal for boating.
On the down side, today’s trip would be mostly upstream or against the current, and a relatively long one – 35 kms.
I mentioned earlier in the blog that I
had put a lot of thought into this cruise to minimize the upstream legs, or at least avoid the big rivers and use the canals when possible.
But at some point in a circular route one has to go upstream, and today was one of those days.
Our route took us straight into the mighty Waal River, upstream for about a kilometre, branch off into the Afgedamde Maas River, where there is not too much current, into the Bergse Maas, upstream for about 9 kilometres and into the
Gekanaliseerde-Dieze to s’ Hertogenbosch (pronounced Ser tog en bosh).
|On the Afgedamde Maas|
The whole route was a busy commercial route with loads of barges as well as pleasure craft.
We battled against the current on the Waal, but had a fairly easy time along the Afgedamde Maas, with only 1 lock – Wilhelminasluis.
Gerry at last had a chance to drive and seemed to enjoy himself.
|Flood barrier on the Afgedamde Maas|
Just before we joined into the Bergse Maas we passed under another huge modern flood barrier.
The current on the Bergse Maas wasn’t too bad and we manage about 8 k/hr which meant the current was about 3/ks/hr aginst us.
Our worst day was yet to come later in the trip – on the Waal again, where we managed to move at a whole 3 k/hr against a 7 or 8 k/hr current.
At the end of the post I have put the same picture again of the Great Rivers Area. Hopefully it will help to put things in context.
After leaving the Bergse Maas we turned off into the canalised Dieze where there was hardly any current, and arrived at Engelensluis where we had nearly an hour wait.
The book had warned of this.
|On the Gekanaliseerde Dieze|
The lock is very big and they wait till there are
enough commercial barges to fill the lock, which is understandable as it takes well over 15 mins to fill.
Leaving the lock we followed 3 barges all the way to s’Hertogenbosch and arrived there just before 4 pm.
|Box mooring at s Hertogenbosch|
On arriving at the reporting jetty we had to phone the harbour master who allocated us a vacant box mooring at the Waterpoort Marina.
Another very tight mooring, so it was handy having the extra helping hands of Gerry and Judy on board.
|Fresh produce market|
As it was quite late in the afternoon, we only had time for a quick walk up town, and to locate the railway station for Gerry as they were leaving the next day.
Tuesday, we walked to the station to see our friends off.
Then headed back to the boat.
|s Hertogenbosch town square|
As the marina boasted washing machines and a dryer we took the opportunity to catch up with chores.
With the result that we decided to stay for Wednesday as well and do the sightseeing.
There is a sort of sameness about all these Dutch towns, yet they each have something different.
|Sint Janse Cathedaral – The most gothic|
There was the usual fresh food market in the town square, where we topped up with lovely fresh produce.
But here is apparently the most Gothic of
Gothic Cathedrals in the Netherlands – Sint Janse Cathedral.
It was huge, really impressive. and beautiful – with loads of gargoyles and other gothic adornments.
|Sint Janse Cathedral|
Most churches in Netherlands have a carillon that sounds at least every hour, sometimes half hours and even quarter hours.
I recorded a a short bit of this one – it seemed to go on for ages.
Next – we head along the Zuidwillemsvaartkanaal towards Maasbracht.
Distance 35 kms
Bridges 4 fixed bridges
Motoring time 4 hours
For a different perspective on our travels, read Karen’s blog Green Point Greenie