These are the adventures of Andy and Sally Rawnsley on their narrowboat "The Puzzler". We have been living on the boat for over eight years now and are still loving it. Our Ulster born Shih Tzu, Shannon, has grown up, and has taken over the boat! After three wonderful years in Ireland, we transported The Puzzler to The Netherlands, and spent a year there. In 2015 we went southwards, to reach the north of France by June. After glorious weather throughout the summer, we arrived in Roanne in late October, and enjoyed our winter in this friendly port. We cruised extensively in France in 2016, returning to Roanne for a second winter.


Sunday, 6 July 2014

25th - 28th June. On into Friesland to see Sloten, Woudsend, Heeg, Langweer and Joure.


Moving on west into Friesland, we crossed the Tjeukermeer. Friesland is the real Lake District of The Netherlands.

Sloten is one of the Eleven Friesland towns, although it is not very big. The tree lined canal runs through the centre of town.


Time for another windmill, complete with its own cannon.


We could not discover how old these stocks were, but they still work!

From Sloten a training sailing ship was just setting off into the lake, Slotermeer.

Her sails are now up and she is starting to move with the wind. It is surprising how little wind is needed to fill these big sails.
Our next Friesian town was Woodsend, where we were allowed to go up this working windmill. It was a dark climb up three steep flour-coated stepladders to reach the top, with a rope hanging down by the last one, which did add a touch of safety!



Another lake, Heegermeer, led us on to Heeg, where there were many more yachts in the marina there, ready for the summer.
From Heeg we turned back eastwards, and our route took us briefly on to the Prinses Margriet Kanaal, which is a commercial waterway. This barge, Galactica, overtook us. At 2200 tons it was the largest barge we have seen so far in Holland.

A smaller lake, Langweerder Wieden, took us to Langweer, which is known for its avenue of lime trees, with many cafes lining the street.


Joure next, which is a larger town. Unfortunately the Douw Egbert Coffee Museum was closed when we were there.


This view of the church tower must be good!

Makkerite moorings in Friesland are free. This was an unusual one for us, with The Puzzler stretched between the main jetty and a barge mooring post.


An unusual craft to see here, but are the paddles just for show?

We saw a bird just near to the boat, which Matt identified as a blacktailed Godwit.

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