Bike Touring Highlight (Segment)
The Canal du Center is a French shipping channel, mainly in the Saône-et-Loire department in the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region. At about one kilometer in length, it also touches the neighboring department of Côte-d'Or. He follows on his run the rivers Talie, Dheune and Bourbince.
The channel is of the type of a watershed channel. Its peak is located at Montchanin at an altitude of 301 meters, where a variety of reservoirs were created for water supply. The canal has 61 locks, 35 of which cover the height difference of 126 meters to the Saône, 26 locks are required for the 75 -meter-high descent to the Loire. The sluice dimension is designed for ships of the standard size Freycinet. The last lock before the confluence with the Saône (Crissey), with a lifting height of 10.5 meters, is one of the highest of its kind.
The first plans for the canal were designed by Leonardo da Vinci, the plan for the actual construction of the canal was made at the beginning of the 17th century, but construction did not begin until 1784. After commissioning in 1793, it mainly served the coalmine and industrial area Montceau-les-Mines. At this time, the channel ended at Digoin in the Loire, a continuation on the Loire side channel became possible only in 1838, when the construction of the Loire side channel reached Digoin. The canal bridge across the Loire, at Digoin, does not belong to the Canal du Center, as is often claimed, but to the Loire side canal, which still reaches as far as the center of Digoin and then merges into the Canal du Center.At the end of the 19th century, water from the Arroux River near Gueugnon was diverted and channeled along a 14-kilometer (Rigole de l'Arroux) supply canal east of the town of Digoin into the Canal du Center to improve the canal's water supply. At that time the Rigole de l'Arroux was navigable for small ships. In the 1950s, however, the port in Gueugnon was closed and the shipping stopped on this supply channel.
Cargo shipping has gradually lost importance. Today, the channel is mainly used by sports and houseboats.
July 9, 2018
Excellent paved flat bike trail along the historic 1793 Canal du Centre, connecting at Chalon-sur-Saône the transeuropean EuroVelo 6 route (coming from the Black Sea) with the ViaRhôna route and leads via Dignon to the Loire Valley trails and Nantes with it's intersection of EuroVelo 1 Vélodyssée along the Atlantic coast.
June 17, 2019
Le Gue des Bateliers - surprisingly delicious restaurant with good value for money right on the bike path Voie Verte on the height of Fontaines. You can sit inside or outside and you will be treated as a bike tourist decent. French serenity - no one is rushing to continue.
December 26, 2018
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