Wooden shoe trails are fun! I have already chosen another trail. In this blog just a short description of the trail (a trail shortener 😉 ), a few photos and a simple sketch to illustrate. No need for a hiking map, the info on the website is clear enough.

This time a report of the Baanbreker trail.

Sketch Ammersoyen Castle - Baanbreker trail
Sketch Ammersoyen Castle – Baanbreker trail

My experience

For the Baanbreker trail, I travel by public transport to Ammerzoden in the Netherlands, where I get off the bus in the town centre. The official starting point is in Well at ‘t Wellse Veerhuis, but for me Ammerzoden is a bit easier to reach. I walk from the centre straight towards Ammersoyen Castle where I pick up the trail markings.

The Baanbreker trail is 11 km long and you can shorten it to 6 km, but then you miss a nice stretch along the Afgedamde Maas and the ‘real’ Maas rivers.

Just before Ammersoyen castle is another beautiful structure: the church ruins. I like it when decayed structures still remain and are not completely demolished. It has something mystical about it and you still learn something about its history. Then I walk in the direction of the castle. The trail goes all the way around the castle. The castle park is crowded with other hikers.

I continue along paved roads and unpaved paths and pass through the hamlet of Wordragen. The trail makers have done their best to find nice, unpaved paths. On the outskirts of Ammerzoden, I walk through a park with tall trees in which large groups of birds have made their nests and which make an enormous amount of noise. They turn out to be rooks. What a commotion these birds make! Below you can see a video of the rooks.

Video nesting rooks

Video of nesting and noice making rooks.

At the rooks woods you have the choice of the trail shortener, this trail continues along the outskirts of Ammerzoden towards the Maas river. I myself am far from finished hiking and opt for the normal trail. Via the countryside, I walk towards the Afgedamde Maas river. At first, I can only see the river in the distance from the Slijkwellsedijk. At this point, you can switch to another wooden shoe trail called the Hamaritha trail. I have not yet hiked this trail, so there is no report on that yet. I myself stay on the Baanbreker trail and go over the dike with a view of the Afgedamde Maas river in the distance.

Not much later, I may turn right on a unpaved path right along the Afgedamde Maas river. You cannot walk this section at high tide; there is an alternative trail which goes further along the Wellsedijk to the starting point. I walk along the path with lots of bushes, occasionally having a glimpse of the river. A little further on, the river is actually dammed up (hence the name Afgedamde Maas). A nice recreational beach has been made at the end of the river.

Trail guide about wooden shoes trails

Once more I head towards the dike, cross it and then go down again on the other side. Now I am at the next river: the world-famous Meuse. I walk along the riverbank for a while.

On the way, I hear bird sounds I don’t know. I peer across the water and between the branches of the trees on the shore. Suddenly, I see an orange-blue bird fly by. It’s clearly a kingfisher! It sits down for a moment on the breakwaters and then dives into the water to catch a fish. Wow, now I have finally seen a kingfisher. And not just a blue flash.

Once near Well, I go up the dike at ‘t Wellse Veerhuis before immediately going down the dike again. I follow the path through the floodplains for a while and near Ammerzoden I go up the dike again. I am still a bit too early for the bus, so I take a seat on a bench to enjoy the view.

The photos

Final thoughts

This trail was initially a fine hike (3 stars) in my experience with a nice variety of sights and paved and unpaved paths. Also, the views along the rivers are beautiful.

This trail still turned out to be a super hike for me (4 stars) after all, as I saw both an entire flock of rooks and even a kingfisher!

More info:

Trail: Wooden shoes trail Baanbreker trail
Where: Ammerzoden and Well, Gelderland, the Netherlands.
No. of km: 11 km
Hiking date: 28 March 2023
Materials used in illustration: little sketch with graphite pencil
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

🚌 Info public transport:
  • Starting and ending point: bus stop Dorpsstraat, Well – bus 166 between ‘s Hertogenbosch and Well, Maaijenstraat
  • I got off the same bus at stop Haarstraat in Ammerzoden.

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Pin Super hike: Wooden shoes trail - Baanbreker trail
Pin Super hike: Wooden shoes trail – Baanbreker trail

More hiking along rivers

Do you, like me, enjoy beautiful views of the river region? Here are three more blogs in which I report on a hike along a beautiful river in the Netherlands, such as the Oude Maas, the Lek and the Waal river:

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