Canal de Bourgogne: Souterrain de Pouilly-en-Auxois

Wanderlust approaches Vandenesse at the far side of the Souterrain de Pouilly-en-Auxois.

The port de plaisance in Pouilly-en-Auxois is located in the uppermost pound of the Canal de Bourgogne. From the summit reach Wanderlust would descend at the next lock no matter her direction of travel. To the west of the port, the canal water’s drain down to the River Yonne. In Montereau-fault-Yonne the Yonne joins the Seine on the way to the Atlantic in Le Havre. To the east, in the direction we were heading, the waters of the canal connect to the River Saône. In Lyon the Saône joins the Rhone River, which deposit’s its waters into the Mediterranean near Marseille. Though the water in the summit pound would eventually make it to the Med or Atlantic, Wanderlust would not, at least not this year. Continue reading


Canal de Bourgogne: Pont Royal to Pouilly-en-Auxois

Mad Max meets the Canal de Bourgogne.

Mad Max meets the Canal de Bourgogne.

The port in Pont Royal is pleasant. Indeed we might have stayed another day if the restaurant was open. But it was August in France and the restaurateur was “en vacances,” as they say. If we wanted to stay longer we’d need to break out the emergency rations. Though we like the cassoulet we had stocked in the pantry well enough it is hard to want to subsist on canned food for days on end. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Venarey-les-Laumes to Pont Royal

The Canal de Bourgogne

The Canal de Bourgogne

Not far from Venarey-les-Laumes the Canal-de-Bourgogne starts climbing quickly, or at least quickly for a canal. For one 12-kilometer stretch from Ecluse Mussy to Ecluse Charigny there are 37 locks. These locks lift or drop the passing boats by about 96 meters. That calculates to a gradient of roughly 0.8%, a slope that would be hardly noticed in a car. In barge on a canal, you definitely are aware that you are climbing. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Montbard to Venarey-les-Laumes


Wanderlust on the Canal de Bourgogne

Soon after we tied Wanderlust up in Montbard we learned that an American couple, traveling in their Linssen cruiser, was moored nearby. When I say “we”, I really mean our dog Gigi made the discovery. As is often the case, Gigi made the first introduction. We just happened to be on the other end of the leash. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Ravières to Montbard

Wanderlust in a lock on the Canal de Bourgogne

Wanderlust in a lock on the Canal de Bourgogne

In Ravières, on the morning of the 29th of July, I turned the key on Wanderlust’s dash to start the engine. The motor came to life with small belch of smoke. After the troubles in Ancy-le-Franc, it would take some time until starting Wanderlust’s engine again felt routine. But for now, it was good. The new battery was working. There was no indication of any additional problems. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Ancy-le-Franc to Ravières

Calm waters in Ravières

Calm waters in Ravières

In Ancy-le-Franc, on the morning of the 28th of July, I turned the key on the dash to start Wanderlust’s main engine. The engine came to life with a rumble. After a week of struggles, we could finally continue on our way along the canal. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Troubles in Ancy-le-Franc

The courtyard of Château d'Ancy-le-Franc

The courtyard of Château d’Ancy-le-Franc

From Tanlay, Ancy-le-Franc, Wanderlust’s next stop, is a day’s cruise. In Ancy we planned to tour the Château d’Ancy-le-Franc. The chateau sits 500 meters of so from the port on the Canal de Bourgogne. Unless the chateau happened to be closed for one of the many French holidays that always seem to catch us by surprise or as a result of a force majeure, we would pay nine Euros each to see the inside. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Tanlay to Ancy-le-Franc

dsc_0224-edit-editDeparting Tanlay Wanderlust continued up the Canal de Bourgogne. The goal for the day was Ancy-le-Franc. Ancy, like Tanlay, is a commune in the domain of the Dukes of Burgundy anchored by a grand chateau. And just also like Tanlay, a brown tourist sign along the Autoroute du Soleil, the A6, encourages passersby to explore the town’s chateau. Continue reading

Canal de Bourgogne: Tonnerre to Tanlay

Château de Tanlay reflects off of the moat.

Château de Tanlay reflects off of the moat.

Escaping Tonnerre, Wanderlust’s next stop on the Canal de Bourgogne was Tanlay. Though this commune is home to around a thousand residents one residence stands out, the Château de Tanlay. Separated from the rest of the community by a water-filled moat and a ring of gardens, the manor house is the central attraction in the town. Continue reading