It was Wednesday and the weather was beautiful. After being self isolated to the house for three weeks knitting a pair of hiking socks I breathed in the fresh air as I stepped outside the door and headed to the bus. It had been several months since I last hiked a section of the Floris V Pad (read about my last hike here). So I was excited to add another length to my log book in hopes of completing it at the town of Bergen op Zoom sometime before the end of 2019.
As I have explained before on this blog, getting there and back is sometimes the longest part of the trip as I criss cross the country by public transport to get to start and then return home from these hikes. This trip started with a bus ride on 397 to Hoofddorp where I caught a train to Leiden then switched trains to another train that took me to Woerden. A little over an hour to get to my start point.
It was a beautiful start point location.
Take notice of the two city workers in orange… I guess I was taking too long checking my maps and they decided I needed to move on and started weed whacking right next to me! I got the message and quickly started the route.
The route took me through the center of the town. It was market day and full of people shopping. It was hard to figure out where the route was supposed to take me, so I stopped at the Stad Museum for a visit and maybe some route information.
This cool looking building was the highlight of my hike. I was surprised at the artwork and the Roman artifacts that were contained in this building. There was one room I almost missed as it was tucked off to the side but I was rewarded with a surprise as I stepped into this room that seemed frozen in time. The former city council room (I think that was its purpose) had the most beautiful woodwork carvings and furniture displays. I even found an old tax collection box.
After leaving the museum and gaining a wealth of local historical knowledge, not so much on information on the location of the Floris V Pad hiking route. I continued through the busy market day streets in search of the elusive red/white route indicators.
I have mentioned before that you really have to look for these darn things and one miss and you could be very far out of the way or on another route entirely. As I cross from one area into another they each have a different way of indicating or identifying the routes. Sometimes it is just my gut feeling (and old fashioned map and map apps) that seems to push me in the right direction. Scroll over photos to see my comments.
Then over an hour into my hike…finally a Floris V Pad sticker!
As I started to exit the town of Woerden I encountered several beautiful locations. One was this garden in a small neighborhood. These people really packed a lot into the garden but it all fits so beautifully. I could hear the bamboo wind chimes as I was hiking towards this gem of a garden. It was a nice place to stop and just take in all they had hidden in the garden.
With a closer look I even spotted a pig.
On a bit larger scale just outside of town I came across this mansion with a cool front gate being guarded by really angry lions.
A closer look.
The path most of the way was paved and skirted a canal along the left hand side as I walked. Since it was a very narrow street/path I encountered very little auto traffic. Mostly I was being passed by cyclist out on vacation.
This route went through some beautiful farm country. Sections of dairy and sheep farms. Small apple and pear orchards were located at several of the farms I hiked past, the branches bending with the weight of the fruit.
At the 10km mark I was really wishing for a cup of coffee and an end to this hike. My wish was granted in a bench to rest and recover a bit for my last 3 kms into Oudewater.
I ended my hike in Oudewater. It has a history of witches and witch trials. Not wanting to get caught red handed with my witchy ways I quickly purchased a coffee and headed for the bus stop.
I headed back via bus and train to the house.
Totals for Floris V Pad
- Woerden to Oudewater – 13 kms
- Total hiked Floris V Pad to date – 67.8 kms
- Total distance for Floris V Pad 244 km from Amsterdam to Bergen op Zoom
- Total distance to accomplish – 175 km
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