New Year's walks with friends

So we spent the last days of 2019 in the Ardennes in Deventave, a tiny village in the middle of the square of La Roche en Ardennes, Baraque Fraiture, Marche-en-Famenne.  For us it was a good opportunity to get to know a different area in the Belgian Ardennes.  ...the real Ardennes. We always claim to be in the Ardennes but in fact we tend to spend our time in the High Fens in East Belgium.  So this time we were in the heart of the Ardennes, 75 years after the Battle of the Bulge, which left its marks everywhere with e.g. tanks as monuments at the churches of the tiny villages and pictures of the old destructions.

Valley descent

But we focussed on the beautiful nature with some nature walks together with all our friends.  Upon our arrival on Monday 30/12 it was quite warm. We did a walk from Deventave to a creek valley and mounted up again via La Maladrie and Le Concy.  It was a bit hard to walk with all of us and keep a pace that was feasible for the little legs of our Beertje, but we succeeded and our boys have walked along like true little champs.

Beaver walk

On the last day of the year we planned to do the beaver walk.  Since the distance was a bit longer than the previous day and we'd have more altitude changes, Jan took the right decision to do a seperate easier walk with Beertje while we'd try to join both itineraries at the end of our walks. 

We started with partially the same descent as the day before but then turned left on a muddy path that descended quite steeply further.  Deep in the woods at a crossing of multiple paths, we turned left again and started to climb next to a creek. Quite quickly we noticed 6-7 beaver dams which was quite impressive.  We were already quite happy with that discovery.  But as we climbed further and further, we saw an incredible amount of eaten/fallen trees, some with rather fresh bite marks and we saw dam after dam after dam. The entire valley was a succession of little lakes with tiny waterfalls overflowing the beaver dams into the next pond. Pretty awesome. Never in my life I've seen that much proof of beaver activity, not even at the many beaver castles and dams in Canada. I really wonder how many animals are living in this valley and if there is a risk they've "used" all trees at one point.   The animals itself remained invisible. ...well it's not like a group of ours had a silent passing by. 

The path turned left again and we left the beaver creek behind to follow a very muddy pathway.  And then we started to climb a pretty steep hill where the sun came out right there.   Glad we did not have to drag Beertje up this hill but it was a quite nice stretch although we all had some breathing stops where we all started to take off our warm jackets.  On top of the hill we had some pine wood again after which we walked the ridge with gorgeous overview of the valley before we joined the village roads where we found Jan and Beertje again. 


Kris10 said…
Prachtige foto's van een prachtige dag! Ik krijg zin in een wandeling.
Goofball said…
@kris10: ik heb bijna altijd zin in een wandeling. Als ik niet te moe ben, niet te kou heb en het buiten geen pisweer is.
Le petit requin said…
Oh waw, tof, die beverburchten! Link naar de wandeling is opgeslagen :)

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