The High Fens (french: Hautes Fagnes, German: Hohes Venn, Dutch: Hoge Venen) are a bogland in Eastern Belgium which form a combined international natural park together with the Eifel in next-door Germany. What looks from a distance like mossy grassfields is actually a very wet swampy terrain.
The conditions of the wooden pathways you’re seeing here are often pretty bad. In 2011 a fire also wiped out a few of them. As I wrote in the previous post, I took a wrong turn somewhere because I was expecting a pathway to re-appear, to get lost for a moment meaning I had to walk through the marshland to the nearest point I could recognise, a forest’s border that I knew had a path, which is how I ended up spending a disproportionate amount of time on a short stretch stumbling from moss heap to moss heap, falling knee-deep into the water.
Passing an old Belgian-Prussian border stone, this stone is one of several relics of the old border located in the otherwise empty Fens, hence one map landmark’s name, “les trois bornes”, a point with three of these border stones nearby .
When I then finally arrived at the Signal de Botrange, I noticed the bus back to Eupen. Rather than stopping to take a photo of the little tower that marks the highest point of Belgium, I made a run for it so I wouldn’t have to wait an hour for the next one.
The dinner I had that night as a bonus feature.