Friday, June 24, 2011

Where I'm walking this week: Waterland

Today on my walk I explored an area to the Northeast of Amsterdam called Waterland. The area earned its name because its low-lying position and abundance of water, made evident by the canals that cut through the landscape. The starting point of my walk was a village called Durgerdam, which sits upon the Zeedijk, a dyke that was built in the 15th century to prevent flooding from reoccurring.

Staying true to its name, Waterland greeted me with a massive rainstorm that I was fortunately able to ride out from inside the comfort of my car. As soon as the sky began to clear up, I started on my walk and hoped for the best. While it might not be a good idea to walk in the pouring rain, I've been told that it is important to try and train in all conditions since you never know how the weather will be during the 3-Day Walk itself. And the walk does take place in Seattle, after all (although September is usually a fairly dry month).

A rather Monet-like shot from inside my car
Waiting for the storm to pass

I began my walk along the dyke between Kinselmeer and Ijmeer (meer means "lake" in Dutch), to a quaint village named Uitdam. From there I continued to walk through Waterland, which is home to many cattle, sheep, and birds. I was pleased to see that farmers offer the same greeting in Waterland as they do in North Dakota, by subtly lifting two fingers from the steering wheel of their vehicle. Other than the farmers and a handful of cyclists, I did not pass any other people during my walk. Which seems odd considering how close to the city I still was.

Family of swans

Despite the handy "knooppuntensysteem," which I will explain in another post, I still managed to take a couple of wrong turns along the way and I ended up walking about 4 miles more than I had intended to. I only had water with me, and for that long of a walk I could have used a snack or a sports drink to refuel. I will definitely be sticking something nutritious in my backpack on my next walk.

Which way?
One of the many small bridges I crossed

That's it for this week's walk! 

This week's walk: 

Distance: 15.5 miles (26km)
Time: 4 hours
Weeks Left: 12

Amount Left to Raise: $1,000

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