Friday, January 14, 2011

Trip report: Around the pool

Date: 2011/01/09
Distance: 4.1 km
Time: 1h 2m
Temperature: 4'C
Weather: Some light wind and some light drizzle


Vis Around the pool i et større kart

As part of our preparation for the Pieterpad we have to work out what we can expect to achieve in a day, but also to build up our stamina. While waiting for our daughter to be born and since then, we've more or less turned into couch potatoes.

We've tried to be good at getting out of the house when we've been at home, walking around the local park, Vondelpark, and trying to keep a good pace. Our little jaunt this weekend seems to indicate we're not in as bad a form as we thought, but we need to push ourselves further next weekend.

The satnav (clever as it is) took us the long way around to the south side of Amsterdamse Bos, into Amstelveen to a little, apparently unnamed, pond (or pool as it appears to be called). As you can see from the map it's a fairly round little lake that lets the cold, damp wind get a good run-up before it tries to force it's way through your clothes. It's been raining a lot lately and it showed on the track as we stepped on to the track from the pavement. As we were pushing Ingrid in a pram we risked the wrath of the cyclists by walking on the bike path as it had not turned into a mud bath.

The sky was an uninspiring grey, but fortunately it was not raining and we'd dressed sensibly to keep the cold wind out. Ingrid was happy as Larry, and after a short bout of babbling promptly fell asleep. I'm really wondering how she's going to take to a carry frame as she's not been too keen on being carried in the Baby-Bjorn, though that might have changed now that she can be pointed forward instead of towards my chest.

We tried to keep off the bike path as much as we could, though it was a bit challenging at times with the pram. At one point the path took us onto a road and past some houses that were sitting right on the pond. Quite a few people were out walking and we were seldom out of sight of people.

Though the walk was nice I just don't feel like I'm out in the wilderness here. I guess that's because I'm not, but I always feel that everything is too neat, too prepped. What I'm still longing for the wildness of the Norwegian mountains, but anything that would give me the sense of wildness would do. If you can suggest somewhere I should go please leave a comment.

One important thing that came out of this walk was that we're clearly fast enough and in good enough form to do a longer walk. Next weekend we'll be doing a 9-12km walk.

4 comments:

  1. Hard question to answer. Wilderness, wild land, whatever you want to call it is hard to come by in this part of the world. Just about everything on offer has been shaped by man in one way or another. For me, the most untouched, natural lanscapes in North-Holland are to be found along the coast. Get into teh dunes and take the lesser trodden paths and you can occasionaly get a sense of being away from the Randstad. Two places worth looking at: For you, the Kennemerduinen (National Park Zuid Kennemerland) are probably readily accessible. Alternatively there is the Amsterdamse Waterleiding Duinen (AWD). The latter is more tamed and paved but there's a very high chance of seeing fallow deer. Otherwise you have to drive east.

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  2. Thanks for those tips Dave. That looks like it it might be just what we were looking for. I'll have to have a thorough poke at that tomorrow to see if I can find a nice walk for Sunday. :)

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  3. Looking at google maps, Parnassiaweg seems to be a good entry point for Kennemerduinen. Large parking space at the end as far as I can make out. Does that match up well with your experience or would you suggest somewhere else?

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  4. I think that's good. The marked (red) route is about the length you're looking for and gives you a taste of the variation on offer, wooded, open dune, wet land and coast. For me the higher view points giveteh most reward. Looking out across the dunes you get a sense of a large, untouched natural landscape taht is hard to find in Holland. Enjoy!

    http://www.natuurwegwijzer.nl/v_natuur/print_route.asp?n_code=236

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