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We checked out Touloouse also, in detail, with several car trips there. A beautiful city, sweet feel in many ways, but the Canal du Midi is a vast ocean of tourist boats, with an hour or two wait at locks sometime, and very incompetent company. As well, there is only the single canal to play on. We prefer to run with the commercial guys- we're big enough to keep up, and they know what they are about, generally. little or no commercial traffic there- it's all a theme park for rentals. Here, there are three canals to choose from and five directions to go, and real traffic not far away.

 

Capitalism searches out the darkest corners of human potential, and mainlines them.

by geezer in Paris (risico at wanadoo(flypoop)fr) on Sun Oct 2nd, 2011 at 11:49:09 PM EST
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A friend of mine is a boater and he spent a few seasons on the Canal du Midi and is full of stories about the dangerous incompetence of the hire boaters. The 9 lock rise from Beziers is notorious, it can take two days to get through.

It is very crowded in high season but if you cruise west of Toulouse you can escape them as they don't seem to get up that far.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 3rd, 2011 at 01:00:14 PM EST
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Another thing about the Canal du Midi is that the plane trees that are so typical and give welcome shade in the Toulous-Sète portion are going to have to gradually chopped down because a fungal rot makes them dangerous. So it will take years for new trees to grow to give shade.

Not so in the portion from Toulouse to the Atlantic. The reason is said to be that the spores are transported by the boats, and there are so many more of them in the Mediterranean section...

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Oct 3rd, 2011 at 02:30:08 PM EST
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Sad. They are often lovely. The danger of falling limbs?

Capitalism searches out the darkest corners of human potential, and mainlines them.
by geezer in Paris (risico at wanadoo(flypoop)fr) on Fri Oct 7th, 2011 at 01:08:39 PM EST
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