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près de Mont Rigi, Wallonia (Belgique)
Nice hike through the High Fens (Hautes Fagnes, Hohes Venn, Hoge Venen), an impressive nature reserve. The walk will take you on the Grande Fagne, the Fagne Wallonne, and the Fagne de Polleur, along the Helle and Polleur streams, and through fir forests. Pay attention on the slippery boardwalks and the path along the Polleur with its slippery tree trunks. Apart from these stretches, the hike is largely on easy, broad tracks. The hike is best started early as it can become very busy around Baraque Michel on beautiful days.
You start at Baraque Michel, where there is a bus stop and a large parking lot beside a popular inn. You cross the street and follow the path on the edge of the moor, and soon enter a board walk which takes you across moors along the Hille river. A bit further you come to a bifurcation with a borderstone on the former Prussian-Belgian border (you will see several borderstones around Baraque Michel). You turn right, follow another boardwalk to the edge of the forest, and cross the woods back to the N68 at Mont Rigi. Here is another inn. You continue onto the Fagne de Polleur. A former boardwalk is in bad condition, so we had to walk around the north side of the fen to get to the Polleur stream. From here, you walk parallel to the stream, slowly ascending on a track into fir woods with sometimes slippery roots. After a bit more than 1 km you descend to a forest road. You cross the Polleur stream and continue northwest through the woods to a bridge across the Ruisseau de Baraque. The bridge is not more than a wooden beam that you can hold on to when crossing the stream on rocks. Shortly after the bridge you turn northeast past the Croix de Fiancés and return across the Grande Fagne back to Baraque Michel.
Well-known as a starting point for hikes through the vens, the inn and the chapel.
Here the boardwalk starts across the Fagne Wallonne. You can follow this track along the Helle river, which start here on the fen, all the way to Eupen.
Here there is a bridge on the young Helle, as well as another borderstone on the former border between Prussia and Belgium (before World War I)
Bridge on the young Polleur river. From here the path/boardwalk follows the river, but slowly goes up into the fir forest giving excellent views across the fen.
A beam across the stream can be used as a hand rail.
The cross of the engaged...
You enter the Fagne de Polleur here. You used to be able to walk around it on boardwalks, but part of the boardwalk has been replaced by a small dike of mud and stones, and part of it is not accessible as the boards have rotted away.
There is a restaurant here.
You cross the Polleur on a forest road. There is a small refuge here.