Wednesday, April 2, 2008

New Sea, New Land



Continuing on the "Water" theme: some of the people who commented on yesterday's blog mentioned The Netherlands' famous battle with water. I feel the need to point out two facts:
First, the story about the boy saving the country by sticking his finger in a dike is actually an American tale ("Hans Brinker or The Silver Skates" by Mary Mapes Dodge). More here.
Second, about 25% of The Netherlands is below sea level. The dutch have an amazing network of water works, not only to protect the country but to reclaim land. In the early 20th century, the large area of water that used to be called the Zuiderzee was blocked off from the North Sea/Wadden Sea. Once the sea level in this new area (now called the "Ijsselmeer") was controlled, new land areas were created. In fact, an entirely new province, Flevoland, was created. You can read more about it in the wiki entry.

What you see in the photo is the Houtribdijk, a 30-km dike that connects North Holland with Flevoland. In the center of the dike there is a rest stop with an observation tower, from which we snapped this shot. Below is a map (from wiki) of the entire Zuiderzee area.

8 comments:

Bergson said...

Superb photograph with the water on each side of the road.

You were in parachute to take the photograph

;-)))

Dina said...

So THAT is what a dike looks like! Guess I never really knew. (Whaddaya expect from another former Chicagoan?)
It is very impressive. Thanks.

Livio said...

Your blog is full of beautiful shots especially this one.

Mo said...

Amazing. I must plan a trip to see these.

b.c. said...

this is such a nice shot--thanks for including all the interesting information

Dick said...

Good shot, I have some too but yours is much better.

Lezard said...

Very interesting to read. You were lucky to be there with nice weather, last time I "crossed", there was so much fog you could hardly see the water on both sides!

Carraol said...

Extraordinary catch of this dike, great angle and composition.