Posting this blog has taken a while. It has been a busy time aboard Antiope hosting friends from New Zealand and cruising from Epernay to Paris and up the Seine to the navigable limit at Nogent-sur-Seine. As I write from our mooring in a quiet backwater, the infant Seine river tumbles over the barrage mere metres away, on its journey to Paris and the sea.
The young Seine runs through Nogent
Nogent-sur-Seine lock. We reach the navigable head of the Seine
From Epernay we cruised down the Marne river through the Champagne region, vineyards stretching over the hills to the horizon.
The Marne river, Epernay
Vineyards line the Marne river
Antiope (bottom left) in the 'Arsenal' in the heart of Paris
In Paris we became tourists for a few days. Although we have been here twice before, there is always more to see and experience. Still our favourite stop
From Nancy our passage is eastwards, continuing along the Marne Rhine canal through Toul, Bar le Duc, Vitry, Chalons-en -Champagne and Epernay.
We were warned of low water levels and weed through the Summit levels, A bit of rain would help.
It has been a very hot dry summer in this region. The Meuse river that we cruised up last year, has already been closed to navigation to conserve water for the Nuclear power plants further downstream.
The lost waterway and tunnel through Liverdun
I had to explore the old abandonned canal route between Toul and Nancy closed in 1966 when the Moselle was opened as a Rhine barge size waterway
Slowly does it over the summit level,
barely 50cm below the keel at times
Mauvages tunnel, 5km long,
We are accompanied by a safety guide on his bicycle
Crystal clear water, on the summit level
Big fish swim by ,
these waters are too remote for the anglers
Bar-le-Duc, an ancient city.
A quiet mooring in Bar-le -Duc
The clock tower towers over Bar le Duc.
It has told the time for over 6 centuries
Once past the shallows, the rains came to refill the canals.
Patisserie on show in Chalons-en-Champagne
We find security barriers have suddenly appeared in public squares