From our rural mooring just past lock 9 on the Canal du Loing, it was 12 locks and 26 km until we moored for the night in Montargis on the Canal de Briare, one of the oldest canals in France. We had to wait as the VNF fixed the second to last lock. The delay meant that we arrived at the last deep lock in Montargis after the closing time. Fortunately the VNF stayed late and let us through. Still, the delay made for a long day.
We stayed in Montargis longer than expected due to a problem with the canal ahead of us. The canal, we determined through the language barrier, had silted in from the heavy rains. In truth, we could have easily navigated past the silted spot if the VNF had let us. But the VNF was being cautious. They didn’t want to be responsible for freeing Wanderlust if we strayed too close to the bank at the one particular shallow point and somehow got stuck.
For us being forced to stay a few extra days in Montargis is not a hardship. Crossed by a network of canals and rivers, attractive Montargis is known as the “Venice of the Gâtinais”. Indeed, if we thought about it ahead of time, we might have planned on staying in Montargis longer. It is a nice commune. And importantly, there is a very, very good boulangerie in town with some of the very best croissants of the season. A good boulangerie is always worth an extended stay.
(Wanderlust arrived in Montargis on May 5, 2015.)