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If you have never done a volksmarch in Luxembourg, this might be the weekend to head to the Hosingen area. The walk there starts in the Naturpark Our southeast of Hosingen. Luxembourg is a beautiful country, so walking through a nature park should be extra special.

We would expect the trails to be hilly. The five- and 10-kilometer trails start between 6:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. The 20-kilometer route starts between 6:30 a.m. and noon. Saturday’s marathon course starts between 6 and 9 a.m.

Hosingen is in northern Luxembourg on E421 or N7. This major road was called Skyline Drive by American GIs during WWII because of the beautiful views. Fighting along Skyline Drive during the early hours of the Battle of the Bulge was intense due to both sides wanting control of this roadway. Wehrmacht units wanted to blitz through this area to quickly seize the major traffic hub of Bastogne, less than 40 kilometers west. Elements of the 28th Infantry Division slowed the advance long enough for towns like Bastogne to establish a defense. Look for monuments to the defenders in towns along Skyline Drive. As a WWII history fanatic, Bob will want to get his boots on the ground in Hosingen.

That also means that Bob is looking at the Sunday walk in Sibret, Belgium. Sibret is a few kilometers southwest of Bastogne, so this area is laden with WWII history. Routes from six to 30 kilometers will be offered, and doors open at 7 a.m. Of course, a stop in Bastogne is a requirement after walking in the area. Volksmarching will work up a person’s appetite, so lunch in Bastogne is a distinct possibility. However, the brewery in Achoufffe is not too far away and we might stop there instead.

Another Belgian walk we are thinking about attending is in Mürringen, along the Belgium/German border and south of the beautiful town of Monschau, Germany. Monschau would be an excellent place to stop for lunch. This event is Sunday only.

Wow, we’ve got some tough decisions to make!

Meanwhile, this weekend’s event in Wolfschlugen, Germany, is a Stammtisch event for the Stuttgart German-American Wandering Club. Look for the club’s blue flag at a table in the start hall and go over and say “Hi!” The members will be glad to see you. If you are new to volksmarching or looking for some walking buddies, here are the people for you to get to know. The prize for this walk is some kind of furry little stuffed animal. The flier makes it look like a squirrel or maybe a ferret-like critter. It looks suspiciously like the “cute” little rascal that got up under the hood of our Toyota when it was new and chewed up about 400 euros worth of insulation. Yeah, we want one of those real bad!

Walkers in the Wiesbaden area will find the walk in Allendorf convenient. The start is at the Dorfgemeinschaftshaus in Allenddorf, located at Hauptstrasse 67, where the doors open at 7 a.m. both Saturday and Sunday. B-medals are the prize here.

We recently had a very nice Saturday that included several activities in Belgium. With a summer trip to Krakow on the agenda, we decided to drive to Charleroi to check out parking options for the airport. (There is a lot of road construction in the area, so we’ll have to allow for extra driving time.)

From Charleroi, we drove south to the walk in Franchimont. This turned out to be a very popular walk and in such a small town parking was quite a challenge. The weather was nice and the countryside very scenic. After the walk, we continued south to the town of Bourlers. We were looking for the Chimay brewery. Turns out the brewery does not have tours, but there is a building nearby, the Espace Chimay, where there is an exhibit on the brewing of the Chimay beer. We were surprised to learn that, in addition to brewing beer, the monks also make cheese, and the cheese making process was explained.

Part of the Espace Chimay is a hotel, gift shop and restaurant. Sensing a unique lunch opportunity, we decided to eat at the Auberge de Poteaupré. We tried a cheese sampler board with four samples of the monk’s cheese, followed by a grilled ham and cheese sandwich with the “classic” cheese. The sandwich was very good; with emphasis on the cheese and just a hint of ham flavoring coming through. We washed it down with the Chimay gold draft beer. The gift shop had the other Chimay beers for sale to take with you, but the gold was only available on tap; they do not bottle it. The Espace Chimay is also the starting point for two hiking trails. You can pick up a map of the trails at the gift shop. These are not IVV walks, so you cannot get your books stamped.

Email volksmarch information to two.walkers@yahoo.com. Mail brochures to Bob and Lorraine Huffaker, CMR 460, Box 278, APO AE 09752.

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