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Exploring The Canal de l'Ourcq, A Day Trip in Autumn Foliage

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Nov 8th, 2013, 05:30 AM
  #1
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Exploring The Canal de l'Ourcq, A Day Trip in Autumn Foliage

Some visitors to Paris and any Paris resident is familiar with the canal system in eastern Paris, starting along the Seine as the Bassin de l'Arsenal and continuing north to the Canal Saint-Martin, Bassin de la Villette and then forking at the intersection of the Canal Saint-Denis and the Canal de l'Ourcq. There are some lovely parts along the Canal de l'Ourcq with biking/walking trails along its banks which continue out into the countryside as the canal leaves Paris. A visit here here is popular with visitors and locals alike. Since people are familiar with the part of the canal within Paris then perhaps you'd be interested in visiting it's starting point some 70km to 80km northeast of Paris near the charming village of La Ferté-Milon, which makes a nice day trip in its own right. I took my bike out to pedal along a 20km stretch of the canal and finished up with a visit of La Ferté-Milon. The report has lots of photos of the sights along the way and some brief historical commentary. If interested you can have a look at my report: http://tinyurl.com/kb2mbnb
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Nov 8th, 2013, 06:36 AM
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La Ferté-Milon looks like it could be in North Yorkshire (without the blue sky of course), great snaps, I'll have to extend my canal visits down from Reims next time I'm there shopping.
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Nov 8th, 2013, 07:31 AM
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Fantastic!!! I would certainly do this ride!! The scenery is splendid, and each little village is really inviting. Hmmmm. I wonder how many rides I could manage to do in a 2-week visit, lol!

s
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Nov 8th, 2013, 08:40 AM
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Now that was a "fixer-upper"! Wonderful shots, FMT. Was that mistle-toe on those trees?
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Nov 8th, 2013, 12:48 PM
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bilbo - Never been to Yorkshire but it must be beautiful, except for the lack of blue skies.

swandav2000 - In two weeks you could see an awful lot of villages.

TDudette - That was indeed mistle-toe on those trees. It's a very common site. Thanks for reading.
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Nov 8th, 2013, 01:54 PM
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FrenchMystiqueTours, lovely jaunt through the autumnal landscape. Merci...
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Nov 8th, 2013, 09:42 PM
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Thank you FMT. That was beautiful! I enjoyed riding with you.
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Nov 9th, 2013, 08:39 AM
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Another fantastic report by FMT. There are really so many villages worth a look in the region. Even if you don't feel capable of covering this area by bicycle like FMT, automobiles are actually authorized in these places as well, and as you can see from the roads, even timid drivers will not encounter excessive traffic.
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Nov 9th, 2013, 08:45 AM
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Wonderful report, FMT, thank you!

I have been into canal cruising in the past, but have avoided the smaller canals like the Ourcq because of the lack of infrastructure such as nice restaurants and canalside supply points. I'll have to revise my priorities if there is all that intrigue and hanky panky going on in those tiny villages. An added bonus to the lovely bucolic scenery.
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Nov 10th, 2013, 03:49 AM
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Thanks again everyone.
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Nov 10th, 2013, 07:01 AM
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Intriguing, absolutely outstanding photos FMT...from a fellow New Englander, you've done yourself proud. Thank you. It reminded me how much we loved our only barge trip (From Strasbourg to outside Nancy (many locks). We had the use of the bikes on board which enhanced the trip. You and Kerouac add so muct to this forum with your pictorial TR's.

Along the Ourcq, there were some fierce and bloody battles with obscenely high casulties during WW I which I've described in my WWI chapters. I don't know how L'Ferte-milion or Marrole(sp-?) fared at the time. I'd be happy to send you some "stuff" on it. [email protected]
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Nov 10th, 2013, 10:05 AM
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Hey Stu, nice to hear from a fellow New Englander and thanks for your compliments. I'll drop you a line.
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Nov 10th, 2013, 04:47 PM
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So pretty to see! Picture postcard perfect, FMT! Well done. I will say that I worked with another rep in the Pittsburgh area this week and the foiliage was vibrant and colorful, but the French surroundings win out.
I will take a trio with you i hope in 2014....I have to get to France in warm weather and the next trip MUST be win Giveny is open.
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