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Home Ongewone tochten Delfzijl - Gaseiland on the Hond has been walked - March 04 and 06, 2011

Ongewone Wadlooptochten

Delfzijl - Gaseiland on the Hond has been walked - March 04 and 06, 2011


Approaching the artificial island "de Hond"

Monday, March 07, 2011

DELFZIJL (The Netherlands) - On Friday 4 March this year Kees Wevers and Lammert Kwant have succeeded to walk from the Gaseiland (in English Gas Island) located on the tidal flat the Hond to the mainland near Delfzijl (a small town on the coast). It is the first time this crossing has been made. The route is approximately 8.5 km long. It is a walk in the estuary of the river Eems, which is part of the Wadden Sea.

This crossing has probably not been made before because of the extremely heavy mud near the dike at Delfzijl. After several explorations an adequate route through it was found for people not too heavy. Duration of the trip 2 hours and 15 minutes. The hikers were wearing a thin wetsuit.

Both wad walkers were dropped with a boat on the Hond by an offshore company from Delfzijl.

Also the outbound crossing has been made
On Sunday 6 March, the same two persons and Menno de Leeuw and Heiko Oterdoom have walked the trip in the other direction, from Delfzijl to the Gaseiland. Also this crossing had never been walked.

At a relatively high water level they succeeded to find the route through the heavy mud and to pass through the fairway Bocht van Watum, where the current was exceptionally strong.

Subsequently, during sunset and at dusk the remaining walk of 7.2 km to the Gaseiland was made. And from there in the dark to the Eems seaway, where a boat was waiting for the party to return them to Delfzijl.

The Gaseiland (in Delfzijl referred to as Werkeiland, in English Work Island) is a natural gas extraction site of the NAM (the Dutch Petroleum Company), located, as the crow flies, 1.5 km from the sea dyke near Bierum. It is one of the few natural gas extraction sites in the Netherlands in the Wadden Sea.

On the maps it can be seen that since 1986 the Bocht van Watum near Delfzijl has become much shallower. This has made the Gaseiland a walkable island.