Sunday, 22 April 2012

Springtime, Cycling Along the German-Polish Border

Courting storks on a rooftop near Ratzdorf, where the rivers Oder and Neisse meet on the German-Polish border:
Love on a Rooftop
Also here we saw a stork cross the border (watched by a miniature pony further down the bank that you can just about see) ...

.. and we were also gladdened to see geese returning from the Arctic (or they might be cranes. Whatever. Wave after wave of flocks of large birds flying in from the north. Not flamingos though.):

Below is a photo of the border. You can see the red and white border post of Poland in the distance:

The border region has some very pleasant countryside indeed. We were cycling through it along the Oder-Neisse Radweg, which is a well-paved, long-distance cycle- (and inline skating-) path. The leisurely ride gave us plenty of time to take in the lush flood-meadows alongside the rivers:

The cycle path runs on the other side of a dike that protects the settlements along the rivers from flooding:

Periodically the water-levels do rise dramatically, especially at the end of Winter when the snows of Eastern Europe thaw and come flooding down these rivers on the way to the Baltic sea. Invariably we then get on TV channel RBB outdoor location shots from the Pegel (water level gauge) at Ratzdorf. On those occasions the Pegel usually has water up to the top doorstep and you couldn't get to it except by boat, but today it looked like there was no threat of inundation:

That means the gnome inhabitants of Ratzdorf shouldn't need to worry:

And neither should the beavers along this border, which is bursting with wildlife. But we should watch out for their beaver build work in case it undermines the cycle path!

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