Since the year 2007, I kept written notes of all my visits to Tagliamento river. Map in my hands, bike pedal under the foot, I explored as much as possible the wild track entries to the river bed, travelling with train and mountain bike all along the region Friuli Venezia Giulia.
I collected wandering stories, small adventures, route information, cold water sensations, voices of local people, smell and noise of the visited places, in a personal diary.
To arise the awareness for the need to protect a natural area, I think such area shall be well known, felt as a home-place.
For this reason my diary, edited in the form of e-book containing more than 250 photographies, is now published, in Italian language, with the aim to support river wilderness preservation petition Tagliamento Unesco heritage and related environmental initiatives, as described in the occasion of my photo gallery initiative dedicated to Tagliamento river. The gallery, indeed, displays selected pictures from this book.
If you’re not already familiar with Tagliamento riverbed, you can find here below image excerpts of one chapter from the e-book.
At the end of the page, the text from another story from my diary, dated March 2010, is translated.
I wish you good reading, I wish you to loose yourself in this wonderful river realm.
To read the e-book, titled “Tagliamento king of rivers”, click here below for free downolad (70Mb .pdf file); this e-book is distributed under Creative Commons distribution licence: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International.
March 4th 2010
Puddles and fords
It’s Saturday, I visit the park of water springs, ans I spend the day exploring Codroipo town zone.
I bike through the villages of Biauzzo, Iutizzo, Gorizzo and Camino al Tagliamento.
I reach the church of Pieve di Rosa, and I see the embankment in the distance. The river calls me. I push the pedal in the direction of the water.
The tracks allowing access to Tagliamento river are full of puddles, I zig-zag through the grass, I someway manage to avoid that the wheels enter into the puddles.
But, when the puddles become pools, it’s time to allow the bike getting wet. Let’s go, let’s continue into the soft part of the soil.
Splash-splash, the mud slows me down, but I manage for a while to cross and to overcome all the puddles ahead of me. I insist on the pedal, splash-splash, until the effort to continue my way through the sludge becomes too much. The slime seems to win, my bike can’t go ahead anymore, my equilibrium reaches a limit and… CHOMP! I put my feet down, the shoe is eaten by the mud.
I look down.
Only the upper border of my shoe is visible.
Around me, a mini-lake.
My shoe is water proof, I don’t feel water on the foot. Not yet. The foot is sinking down.
I decide to make a step.
I pull my leg out of the mud, as a wader.
The shoe has remained there, glued to the mud!
My step ahead, done with a foot covered only by the sock, resulted in reaching a position a bit forward, and in having the sock now caught in the mud too!
I laugh out loud, my laughter almost make me fall down!
Ah ah ah!!
Ok, ok, let’s try to minimize the damage.
I move from there, I recover the shoe, I squeeze the sock and I put it on the bike to get it dry.
A bit later, I’m on the river bed.
Tagliamento river extends for left to right, up to the horizon.
On my back, the wood; in front of me, the shore at the other side of the river.
Some motor bikers make a noise, they cross the river in a distant point.
This zone of the water flow, thin enough to be practical as a ford, was already known as a river-crossing place since year 700. At that time, the pilgrims that aimed to cross Tagliamento river, used this route to reach the village of Concordia and other religious centers.
I stop for my lunch.
I cross sand dunes that show no signs: nobody has stepped onto them, before me, at least for a while.
I proceed in the midst of the river bed, through the ford, as much as possible, carrying my bike on the shoulders.
I settle within a curve between two separate streams of the river.
Yes. This is my destination.
The water is all around me.
I peel an orange. Washing the juice off my hands, directly inside Tagliamento water, is something unique.