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Photographer's Note

A day of hard frost transformed the landscape into white. The canals in my hometown are frozen now too but at the moment not enough to do iceskating. Maybee tomorrow people will be able to do so on the Damse Vaart. It has been since 1997 that this was possible.

Here you see the Damse Vaart in Hoeke. The canal was an idea of Napoleon who had it dug from 1810 on. The goal was to enable the French military to move via a network of canals from France to the north out of reach of the English navy. The "Damse Vaart" was meant to link Bruges with Scheldt estuary but it was never completed. Due to the loss of the French (Waterloo), the canal was only finished till Hoeke (+/- the place you see here). The last few kilometers between Hoeke and Sluis (Netherlands) was only dug in 1856.

On the picture: although it was still forbidden (dangerous because the ice was not thick enough on all places), some daredevils risked it anyway.

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Additional Photos by hendrik de leyn (hdl) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1401 W: 14 N: 1567] (6995)
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