The Black Swan of Malpe

It was our first trip this year to Malpe, one of our  favorite destinations for a ‘heide walk’.  We’ve been there so often that the place became too familiar, still nice but bit boring. So, we were hesitating a bit whether we have to there ‘again’.  But eventually we voted for it.

Some surprised waited for us from the very beginning of the walk; a lot of trees had been strangely marked:

But we didn’t get the meaning of this ‘augmented reality’ and went further (some 40 pictures ahead).


To start with, this is the map of the territory:



Before we reach the heide, we need to cross a forest:



Soon we enter the border of the heide, a mixture of a swamp and a marche; but in the winter it looks like an African savanna, not as the Dutch heide:




However impressive these views, the place was of course still a heide, which in this period of a year means more like a swamp:







Above is the view we usually see to the left from a small bridge crossing a small lake in the middle of the heide; and to the right, it is a forest wall, reflected in the water surface.  But today we see no ‘walls’. We hardly see any trees at all!



Very large space, basically the whole middle part of the Malpe heide is now cleaned from the trees that used to grow very densely.  I have a picture somewhere in my archive where you can’t skies reflected in the water, because they are hidden by the trees, and now we saw only one pine’s reflection:



The cuts are all very fresh:



And many trees are not cut down, but rather rooted up and stumped down:


We see the signs of this carnage everywhere:







Dramatic look across the lake:


We are not alone, in fact it seems that the place became even more popular after all these cuts:


Cut trees are piled everywhere:




The central part is entirely transformed, nearly everything is cut down; however, the areas on the margins are hardly touched, we only see the same marks as in the beginning; are they the next ones?


Everything around is very tranquil, as if there was no extermination:





A very dramatic walk; where we expected no changes and all the very same boring route, we find a totally transformed world, with a whole ecosystem changed forever. I am sure it’s all done with good purposes, all these heides are entirely designed by now (as is the rest of the country), and I believe that these are all very well calculated and carefully executed actions. The effect is still one of Black Swans, of course.


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