We spent the entire week remodeling at our house. New floors don’t come cheap and the only way to cut corners a bit is to rip up the old floors ourselves. We looked out the windows at the nice blue sky and calm winds as we drove to the recycle dump last midweek. We decided to formulate an kayak escape for the weekend. The location would be where I had biked into on my solo bike trip earlier this summer.
Krimpenerwaard at Loetbos in South Holland is just North of the Lek River. I dreamed of the nice large low wide launch pads all summer. This past Saturday early morning we headed out to cross the Lek from the South and dip our kayaks into this new area.
I had gotten all the upgrades for the yellow Wilderness Canoe purchased. The Hubby had made the seat improvements and had a new kayak paddle that was now the correct length and style for tour kayaking.
The days are now starting to feel like fall. The air has a lazy fall sun strength with a slight chill in the morning air. Then by mid morning, the temperature starts to warm up, no or just a sprinkle of rain and light mild winds. All these conditions make for a perfect enjoyable kayak paddle.
As the crow flies, the Loetbos is just about 8km from the camping. It is never that easy to get from point “A” to point “B” in this country.
We started out from the camping went to Kinderdijk (about 10km road drive), took the ferry boat across (had to wait 10 mins for the ferry and pay €2.75 which included the car and ourselves), drove through one little town then our TomTom took us on a small country road into the Loetbos (another 9km road drive). We found a parking area and walked into the Loetbos kanocentrum where we launched from canoe point 17.
The Loetbos is a nature area that is only about 2km long and about 1km wide. Loetbos is only a small part of the larger Krimpenerwaard canoe network that has 27 established canoe points that include the towns of Gouda, Stolwijk, Vlist, Schoonhoven and Krimpen aan de IJssel. We didn’t have time to explore much due to family obligations this weekend so we opted only to explore the small area of Loetbos.
I have mentioned in other blogs, that early morning is the time I like to paddle. Either in a canoe or a kayak before 10 am is a wonderful peaceful time to paddle on the Dutch waters. This past Saturday was no different. The clear blue sky with a off shore storm front gave us a enjoyable paddle inside the trees of the forest. On our return, along the canal that skirts the flat fields, the light whipping wind coming from the Sea gave us a workout to our endpoint back at canoe point 17.
We saw the normal heron, pigeons, cormorants that we see mostly here on our paddle trips. At one point I had a hitchhiker. A small dragonfly sat on my pants for a good while and enjoyed the warmth of the sun then flew off into the trees.
Hubby was sometimes ahead of me, sometimes behind me, and had issues towards the end of our paddle with water coming into the kayak when he paddled. He still makes it clear that he is happier with paddling a canoe than his kayak.
After our 4 km paddle we had a nice cup of coffee at the canoe center and watched a group of girls head out in rented canoes into the Loetbos. I loved seeing and hearing the excitement of their voices as they each got effortlessly into the boat and paddled off on an adventure. I kept thinking, 16 future canoe bloggers or by then some other imagined digital platform.
We finished our coffee and loaded the canoes and then took a different ferry boat back across the Lek River to the camping.
I can’t think of a better way to spend a warm fall morning than kayaking in a Dutch forest with two Dutch ferry boat rides across the Lek River.
Things from this weeks paddle:
- 3.8 km with a top speed of 8km/hr (I am thinking this was with a tailwind and the Hubby trying to catch up to me, he had the Garmin and I don’t remember going that fast)
- On the canal next to the flat lands the wind is much stronger, less wind on the canals that are protected by the Loet forest trees.
- Make sure to have cash money for the ferry boat rides.
- Plan extra 15 minutes to 1/2 hour time in for driving to the location due to ferry boats and country roads.
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