The great outdoors - Kayaking in Eernewoude

Hi there,

long time, no speak. And this time, I do not have any excuses other than "I was not in the mood for blogging". Lame!
Anyways, now that the mood is back I would like to share with you what we did last weekend. Which is basically the same we did the weekend before - kayaking. Seems that paddling around in a boat is my new passion, and why not? Still, I need to improve on that outfit. T-shit and functional "outdoor" shorts are so not me, practical as they may be.
Back to the topic, which of course is kayaking. This time we were in Friesland, one of the two northern provinces in the Netherlands. Like I said before, I am on a quest to make this region more interesting and get people up north away from the ususal suspects, Amsterdam, Utrecht, Leiden ;)
We went to the village of Eernewoude this time. The village itself is tiny and deserted in the winter while boosting with life in summer. The reason for that is the incredible amount of water in the area. Little lakes all interconnected form a labyrinth of options for sailers, kayak and kanoe people or those that enjoy driving in motorboats. EVERYBODY will be on the water whenever the weather permits it. I saw children the age of 10 skillfully handling a little motorboat, no kidding. This time, we got our kayaks here. The staff was...ahem.... frisian. I am not saying they are unfriendly, but frisian people are not quite as bubbly as the folks in the west of the country. We got a map, a short descriptions of where to paddle and off we went.
The route takes you through the national park "De alde feanen". Since it is a national park, there are rules for those moving around in it. On the water, there are routes for all kinds of boats and there are special routes for paddlers only. And were we happy to have these routes.
Last sunday the weather was perfect... which means the water was overly crowded. And believe me, kayaks are not something motorboats care about. If you are in a kayak, be passive! Wait for motoboats or sailboats to pass you, do not try to cross a waterway last minute. Chances are high that they will not see you and you will capsize!!!!
Ok, so that was the bad part. Now on to the good part. As kayaks are rather small, we were able to enter a part of the national park no motorboat could handle. We went through narrow ways, trees hanging over our heads, barely wide enough even for our boats. Then, all of a sudden, an opening occurs and you are on this tiny little lake. It is absolutely quiet, just a few birds around you. Amazing!

Bottom line: Kayaking in "de alde feanen" is lovely as long as you know how to behave on crowded waterways and have some experience in handling a kayak. To wrap up, here are some pictures from the serene part of the trip:



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