About Willem VS
Wandelen, (toer)fietsen, hardlopen, ... de mountainbike staat voorlopig op stal.
Komoot is een nieuwe partner in mijn "Groene Michelin"-achtige verkenningen.
Vertrekbasis is Affligem op de grens tussen Vlaams- Brabant en Oost-Vlaanderen.
- Willem VS
We again chose an original and adventurous walk from the collection of originalwandelen.be
We leave in Falmignoul next to Dinant and Anseremme. We soon approach the rocks at a height of 180 m. The first panoramic point, Le Drapeau, immediately requires the optional passage of a rock ledge. We have a beautiful view of the castle of Waulsort. After a detour along a second panorama point we descend steeply to the Chestia. We cross this stream and we reach the GR 125, which runs along an overgrown mountain flank. Here on the highlight "Waulsort la superbe" I take an identical photo as Pascal (g94) did before. A photo of a high tree root, Marina is on top of it for me. A nice comparison of two identical photos! A little further we descend via a stream valley to the Meuse. Here we pass the Waulsort marina and the last ferry across the Maas! Then we have to go up a steep path along a rocky slope. In this way we reach the ruins of the castle of Thierry, which was already destroyed by the French in 1675. A little further it descends again to the Maas. This brings us to the Colébi ravine. This ravine is 600m long and a true wilderness. You can't really speak of a path. Rocks and fallen trees everywhere. It gets over and under and then under and over. We come across beautiful mushrooms. Finally we reach a rock wall of a few meters that we have to climb. While I'm still considering whether we should take the risk, Marina is already on it. Yes, since uphill is easier than downhill, I have to follow…
In this way you reach a cauldron and you still have to climb out of a second gorge strewn with boulders. From there we can quite easily join Falmignoul.
And Marina... she still enjoys her climbing trick! Cheers!
5 days ago
- Willem VS
To the rocks of Marches-les-Dames, is another walk from the collection of "original walks.be"
It is true that this walk belongs to the secured and paying section "adventure walks".
It is a nice "hike" along the rocks where not only the late King Albert was killed, but where you also have the command training center of our Belgian Defense.
It is a spectacular hike, but despite what the pictures suggest, not such a difficult hike. The walk in the opposite direction seems more difficult to me.
Please note, it is not immediately a walk to only walk on the GPS / mobile phone. The walk is not signposted, but you will get there with the text of original walks.be. Even if it is still a matter of time to search.
Very pleased to have descended to Boninne.
October 1, 2021
- Willem VS
The Faluintjes and the Kravalbos are THE hiking spots in the vicinity of Affligem. So we already did several walks. This time we chose the walk from Gert Sonck's collection of original walks.be
It turned out to be a very nice variant, which was indeed original. we noticed that in the Kravaalbos where several paths had grown together. Marina knew with her shorts... The part that Gert led us through didn't count any Komoothighlights either...
After 9 Km we passed Hof Den Tuitelaar, an ideal garden to enjoy a snack or a drink.
Finally, we came across a memorial stone of Baron de Meer in front of the church of Moorsel. Executed after the Boeren gain with an interesting resume.
September 19, 2021
- Willem VS
When Komoot colleague Ria enthusiastically completed her "Tour du Brabant wallon" this summer, I decided to make our work as well. We had already completed five of the nine stages, but had stopped because it became logistically difficult to arrange. No more active train stations nearby, you can only take buses in Wallonia with an electronic card holder and not like with us with a simple text message and with two cars, I thought it was a bit excessive. Another couple did it by car and bicycle. This would be it! So first by car to Autre-Eglise. Then by bike about 25 km back to the station of Blanmont and then walk back via the GRP 127 to the car, 33 km further.
Initially we were presented with nice roads, but that changed quickly. It became more and more paved roads and long straights. Hiking pleasure was not really there. We did pass at the Center of Belgium, which has been moved from Ittre to Nil-Saint-Vincent since 1989! After 11 Km we passed the ruins of the feudal castle of Walhain. And that was it. As we are used to in Wallonia, we did not pass a cafe or terrace for 32 km. An informed man is worth two, so we brought the picnic. After 31 Km we passed the old station of Ramillies and the station was closed in '89, the opposite cafe was open! And chapeau... we were served in Dutch! At the very end when we hiked up the Ravel, I decided not to do one last loop, and we gained a km.Come on, three more stages and hopefully we have now had the most boring part! This stage was not an advertisement for the GRP 127.
September 5, 2021
- 05:5666.4 mi11.2 mph2,525 ft2,600 ft
- Willem VS
Today we drove again a lot of kms along the coast, on paved paths, but also a 30 km! on unpaved roads such as grass, gravel, sand and cobblestones. We've had it all.
After 6 km we were already in Asnelles from where you already have a view of the artificial harbor of Arromanches. A little further we are in Arromanches.
Then we turn to Bayeux, where we first admire some water mills. Bayeux is rated by Michelin with 2 stars and it shows. From there we return to the coast and Omaha Beach. Here we are also surprised by unpaved grass cycle paths. We settle down somewhere for our picnic. After 60 km we are at La Pointe du Hoc, which is however forbidden for cyclists. They make up for it by offering a heavenly bike path from here on the cliffs. Only the white clay is less ideal. From these cliffs we normally see Cherbourg. In Grandcamp-Maisy we take a terrace with us.
We do the bay of Veys and the bay of Isigny via a dune path. Sometimes we are barely 5m from the water. Here and there it is again pushing the bike instead of pedaling. There is a penetrating smell in Isigny, I like him, but the sisters are less happy with it. A little further we pass the oyster farms. In the meantime, Marina had already inaugurated the beautiful white cycle path. When we missed a turn and she turned around, she fell to the ground. Some typical rider injuries (hematomas and abrasions) were the result. But she kept herself brave. Another stupid crash with no speed while maneuvering, where the luggage has a hand in. In the meantime we also rounded Pointe du Grouin and descend along the Aure to Carentan. We stop at the lock and then drive over the Pont-Canal, here the cars drive under the boats. But not through a tunnel, it is the boats that take the bridge.
From Carentan it goes smoothly via the necessary war museums and memorials and over the Voie de la liberté to Sainte-Mere-Eglise!
Here the disabled room has been kept free for us... 🙄. They also tell us that the restaurant is closed! Fortunately we arrive with 2 km to reach the center.We are now a stone's throw from Cherbourg, but we are still going around the coast. I'm already looking forward to Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue and "the run à l'île Tatihou", la Pointe de la Saire and Barfleur.
3 days ago
- 04:4750.6 mi10.6 mph1,850 ft1,750 ft
- Willem VS
And in Normandy it became flat...
We left around 9.00 to continue our journey into Normandy. First we got a view of the Deauville racecourse and we passed the Van de Poele stable! We don't do the pier, but drive via Les Planches past 450 beach cabins, each named after an American author. Hence Marina searched in vain for Mathias S. It continues past Benerville and Blonville. In Villers-sur-Mer, the Greenwich Meridian intersects our trail, it's just a tidbit.
On the plateau d'Auberville we venture again on the GR21. At the end it was again a matter of getting off and pushing... But for the ladies it was worth it. Via Holgate and Cabourg we arrive at the Orne. Our EV 4 drives through a nature reserve and follows the Orne inland. In Bénouville we cross the Orne via the Pegasus bridge. We eat on site. With this we enter the war. From now on it is 2 days about the liberation.
A ferry boat is just unloading in Quistreham. A little further we run into piper Bill Millin! This one played his bagpipes during the whole "landing"! In Luc-sur-Mer there are again cliffs. Beautiful and you don't have to climb a slope for it! We pass the skeleton of a whale. I didn't know they had hands. After several monuments we reach Ver-sur-Mer.
Kristel drives for the second day in a row, the more than 80 km, with one battery, where is the time when she only drove on turbo???
Here we sleep in our own house at 20m from a bakery, a bar and a Proxy. Top. If we were ever to return by car we know where to book.Tomorrow there are 106 km on the program. We will leave the coast to explore Bayeux, although I suspect that will be without a carpet!
October 13, 2021
- 04:5452.6 mi10.7 mph2,850 ft2,875 ft
- Willem VS
The departure started with the obligatory detour in Étretat after which we drove up the cliffs again. The recurring scenario wanted us to be able to put on the jackets after about 5 km, albeit for a "light" drizzle.
After 12 km we were at the Belvedere Plage d'Antifer, an outer harbor for oversized oil tankers...
After 30 km the obligatory dune path on the reefs of Cap de la Hève was blocked. But that meant a detour. And then followed the descent to Le Havre. After the visit to the St Joseph's Church, with beautiful light, we went to the Bassin du Commerce with the footbridge. No protest when we went over it by bike. They thought it was worth it for the view.
The next 20km were needed to leave Le Havre. Construction of the EV4 is in full swing here. And then the apotheosis of the day came up and over the Pont de Normandie. My two references complained about this as quite dangerous (no protection for cyclists, just the murder strip), but the sisters drove over it in one fell swoop. Immediately afterwards Honfleur followed with a terrace, we had already eaten a baguette. From Honfleur it was over a sloping course to Trouville-sur-Mer. Here is a bombastic casino and the fish market was in full swing. Finally, it took a while to find the hotel, which proves that kindness has no price.
From Le Havre to the hotel, we got a warm sun shoved under our wheels!!!
October 9, 2021
- 04:4755.0 mi11.5 mph3,225 ft3,300 ft
- Willem VS
In a light drizzle we had to put on our coats after 500m. And since we slept with a view of the cliffs, it quickly went uphill.
After 10 km we arrived in Veules-les-Roses! Here flows the smallest river (1194m) in France and that provides picturesque scenes. Narrow streets and many watermills. I thought of Monchau. Then it went to Saint-Valery-en Caux, with its port, but also a beautiful half-timbered house "La maison Henry IV". Then followed a quieter stretch cheered up by the castle of Sissi in Sassetot-le-Mauconduit. But we didn't find a terrace.
Via the Cap Fagnet, the highest point of the Alabaster coast, it goes through hairpin bends to Fécamp... Although there is also a steep shortcut in the course, luckily down! In Fécamp, the Palais Bénédictine is impressive, but difficult to photograph. We climb the cliffs again to descend again to Yport. There we follow an alternative for sports enthusiasts... and that turned out to be a miscalculation.
You should know that it is recommended to drive the tour in the opposite direction. After all, the wind blows more towards Belgium. That was not an option for us, because the train journey in one day is still a dime on the side. It is also more fun to cycle to your destination. My reference for this sporty alternative did the tour in the opposite direction.
So we took the sporty alternative. A narrow asphalt path of the GR 21. It went straight up. Now with the electric support at full power, this should work, right? So no: first Kristel stopped, then Marina, but I wanted to go to the top with my MTB experience. Then I could help the sisters afterwards. I too had to set foot before the top and then again: with the luggage completely at the back of the bike, I fell. Another lousy sight, but my helmet protected me as I banged my head on the ground. Without bad. I should have known, even with a mountain bike without luggage, it is the art to keep weight on your front wheel on a steep slope. That is why it is recommended with luggage to divide your weight by also hanging two bags on the front fork. Lesson learned, it won't happen to us again. Upstairs and then get the ladies. Yes, I know, whoever seeks (misery) will find... 🙄. With two we pushed the other two bikes up. Those walkers probably thought, look at that one over there! When we got to the top, we still had 10km to go. Fortunately mainly in a downward trend. After all, we had just walked tired! Finally we topped 1000 hm again! The reward in Etretat was the famous cliffs. My third time passing through here.
October 3, 2021
- 04:5453.9 mi11.0 mph3,225 ft3,275 ft
- Willem VS
Day 5 turned out to be a long day along the coast, but oh so beautiful!
We reached the coast at Le Hourdel with its Port de Plaisance, but were unable to spot any seals. The water was too low for that. From there it went to Cayeux-sur-Mer where we drove on the cobblestones and gravel between the nature reserve Hâble d'Ault and the sea. Then it went to Ault's "balcony over the sea". And we knew that. From Ault it goes to Mers-les-Bains known for its villas from the belle époque. Here we went looking for the most famous and we succeeded!
After crossing the Bresle we ended up in Tréport. With Tréport we also reached the Côte d'Albâtre. Michelin directed us to the Eglise Saint-Jacques and the Calvaire des Terrasses next to the funicular. What a sight! But not after the climb has again cost blood, sweat and almost tears.We follow the EV4 to Dieppe* - the oldest seaside resort in France. The visit ends with the Château de Dieppe and its belvedere. There was a lane you could cycle on, but the sisters preferred to go on foot... After all, there was a sign: Cyclistes, pieds à terre.
Pourville-sur-Mer and Varengeville-sur-Mer, where the church stands high on the chalk cliffs, are quite nice. I compared it to St-Martens-Latem...
Around eight we arrive in Quiberville, where we sleep with a view of the sea and the cliffs. In addition, we ate delicious rye there.
It turned out to be a beautiful day in the earthly paradise, but also a tough one!Our Marina is in great shape! Fun to watch her set the pace!
Everyone can ride a bike, of course, but not everyone does it with a smooth step. And on an electric bicycle there is a great temptation to "pedal bigger". But Marina doesn't let that get caught. A delight to the eye. ;-)
September 22, 2021
- 04:4151.5 mi11.0 mph1,925 ft2,075 ft
- Willem VS
84 Km and still a day off:
Leaving our hotel at 09.00 this morning with super friendly service.
The first hour we visited Montreuil itself. It started with a tour of the ramparts. And it ended with the two cobbled streets with authentic houses from the 18th/19th century and typical of the Canche valley. Our average speed was now 5 km/hr...
Next was a long drive up to km 46, with only a chapel on the way. Initially Marina set the pace, from km 30 I took over because the sisters were slacking. After 46 km I had succeeded in my aim. We had driven barely three hours. Our global pace with stops included is 10km/Hr. So we were over an hour ahead of schedule. So at the Foraines de Saint Firmin we could enjoy a decent lunch on a sunny terrace.
Back on the bike we reached the bay of the Somme after 50 km. We explored Le Crotoy, then drove to the Chinese cemetery in Noyelles-sur-Mer, with 825 Chinese funerary columns. We didn't fail to fill in the register! From there we rounded the bay to St-Vallery-sur-Somme. There we eat a nice coupe inside, because of the wind. My first coupe on a terrace of the year, we still have some damage to make up!
Via the Chapelle des Marins it then went to Pendé. There we had booked a B&B in a farm, but the GPS stopped at a crossroads. No farm in sight. Google maps and booking.com didn't really help. Until Marina saw a sign in the field: La Ferme du Parc, ici! And yes. The farm had a driveway of some 100 meters. Sleep with style, so
September 15, 2021