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The Islands of Loosdrecht Lakes

Loosdrecht Lakes

Narrow elongated islands seen in an area called Scheendijk in the Loosdrecht Lakes, The Netherlands. Photo credit: George Steinmetz

The Loosdrecht lakes are a system of shallow, interconnected lakes in The Netherlands lying in the province of Utrecht, south of Amsterdam. In medieval times this region was a large peat blog that was too soggy for agricultural purposes. Some attempts at draining the bog was made, but in the 17th century any plans for agriculture was abandoned and the bogs were mined instead.

Peat is composed of partially decayed vegetation and organic matter and are an excellent source of fuel. Peat harvesting in Loosdrecht began in the 1630s. The peat was dredged from underneath the water surface and
left to dry on adjacent banks. In this way an area with long cuts and banks, typical in peat mining, was formed. As the peat mining continued, the banks got smaller and subsequent wind and wave action eroded the banks. Excavation of the peat left the long trench-like cuts deeper and deeper until they were flooded by groundwater creating these narrow islands.

The Loosdrecht Lakes are today famous for their holiday homes and for watersport activities.

Loosdrecht Lakes

Map of the Loosdrecht lakes.

Loosdrecht Lakes

Photo credit: www.partyschip-loosdrecht.nl

Loosdrecht Lakes

Mobile homes on the banks of the Loosdrecht Lakes. Photo credit: Julia700702 / Shutterstock.com

Loosdrecht Lakes

Aerial view of the village of Loosdrecht in a nature reserve area with a beautiful pattern of meadows and ditches in the province of Noord-Holland in the Netherlands. Photo credit: Aerovista Luchtfotografie/Shutterstock.com

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