Walking along the Regge river
Bertine Kleinjan
Written by Bertine Kleinjan
2 min
1975 x read

Do you know what a ‘zomp’ (a type of flat-bottomed pram) is? You cannot fail to notice them along the Regge river. For centuries, this vessel was used to transport goods. Thanks to its shallow draught, it could be easily manoeuvred through the winding, shallow Regge. Even so... It used to be so dry in summer sometimes that the ‘zomp’ had to be hoisted from the water by a boat lift and deposited further along.

Along the banks of the Regge river

Now that goods are transported by rail or road, the Regge’s only job is to be beautiful. It proudly winds its way through the farming lowlands, the riverbanks overflowing with wildflowers. Here and there, the river encounters a thatched cottage or old manor house and then continues along sprawling meadows and cows grazing contently. Where lapwings, redshanks and godwits live in harmony and little moorhens bob around on the water.

Ferocious and unpredictable

Hard to imagine that farmers used to risk their lives to cross the river, ferocious and unpredictable as it was in those days. According to local death registers, the river - so lovely today - was responsible for countless deaths by drowning. Since then, generations of water managers have worked hard to tame the Regge river. Weirs, barrages and locks were built and floods are regulated.

Fish ladders

Did you know that fish are constantly migrating through brooks and streams? They do this to find food or shelter, or to breed upstream (in the upper reaches, close to where the river rises). The weirs and locks in the Regge river are a complication, so a number of fish ladders have been introduced. Each ladder is smarter or more beautiful than the one before.

Routes

The Regge river is about 70 km long and runs roughly between Diepenheim and Ommen. The river is guide and location of many different walks. There are a few taverns in spots where ‘zomp’ skippers used to transfer their loads. If you like traditional apple pie, these taverns are worth a visit.

Please be aware:

Grazers along your route look after the biodiversity of the area. Keep your distance and do not make any sudden or unpredictable movements. In case of floods, wellies are recommended. Some routes are no longer passable.

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Bertine Kleinjan
Bertine Kleinjan
Written byBertine Kleinjan

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