Haldens Canal

The Halden canal is a part of the Haldensvassdraget river made up of a row of long lakes connected with short rivers and sounds. From south there is the lakes Femsjøen, Aspern, Ara, Øymarksjøen and Rødenessjøen.
Thanks to the canal you can go by boat 75 kilometers between Tistedal by Halden and Skulerud.
However, you can not go by boat from the sea into the canal. You have to transport your boat over land from Halden to Tistedal.


From the top of the flight of locks in Brekke

Getting close to the Brekke flight och locks from downstreams

Turisten in the middle of Brekke stair of locks. This modern Turisten started it's tours  on Halden canal 1985.

Turisten in Tordivelen

From the top of the flight of locks in Brekke

Getting close to the Brekke flight och locks from downstreams

Turisten in the middle of Brekke flight of locks. This modern Turisten started it's tours on Halden canal 1985.

Turisten in Tordivelen

© Pictures by Jahn Børe Jahnsen, 1990

 

Going into Strømsfoss from downstreams

Turisten going downstreams from Ørje locks

Going into Strømsfoss from downstreams

Turisten going downstreams from Ørje locks

The pictures are old post cards and show the old steam boat Turisten, in scheduled traffic on the canal from 1887 to 1963. The hull was sunk in lake Femsjøen in 1967, but taken up again in the 1990ies. There are plans for a restoration, which still has not started, but the hull is on shore in Tistedalen.
Already in 1862 the first steam boat was in scheduled traffic in the canal. This was the steam boat Engebret Soot. This boat was followed by many more boats. The traffic was large and the boats had 29 piers along the canal. The Engebret Soot was replaced by Turisten in 1887 as for passenger traffic, but continued as a timber tug and still exists.
The steam boat traffic and floating was of less importance when roads were built in the 1920ies and later.

Turisten getting close to Brekke.

Turisten getting into the first Brekke lock chamber.

Inside the flrst chamber.

Time for the next lock chamber.

Turisten getting close to Brekke from downstreams.

Turisten getting into the first Brekke lock chamber.

Inside the flrst chamber.

Time for the next lock chamber.

Getting into the upmost lock chamber.

Turisten leaves Brekke on it's way upstreams. The small steamer Tryg is waiting for passing downstreams.

Getting into the upmost lock chamber.

Turisten leaves Brekke on it's way upstreams. The small steamer Tryg is waiting for passing downstreams.

© Pictures by Jahn Børe Jahnsen, 2003

Total length

Total elevation

Number of locks

Max boatlength

Max boatwidth

Max draught

Max free height

Max speed

70 km

39 m

3

24,0 m

6,0 m

1,6 m

5,7 m

? knots


Short history:
The Haldenvassdraget river has for centuries been a river for timber floating from the great forests down to the sawmills at Tistedalsfossen. The canal was built under supervision by the timber floating inspector Engebret Soor to make the floating of the timber easier. The work started 1852 with building the locks at Brekke, and later locks at Krappeto, Strømsfoss and Ørje. The canal was finished in 1878.
The locks are 90 feet long, 19 feet wide and 5,5 feet deep.
The Brekke lock station is famous, lifting the boats 26,6 meters. This is Northern Europes highest lifting for one lock station.

The distance between the Dalsland canal and the Halden canal is only 2 kilometers at the shortest point. Several times there were plans to connect the two canals, but this has so far not come true. Today there are real plans, only the money is lacking.
From 1827 to 1956 there was a timber floating canal between the two mentioned canals from lake Stora Le to lake Øymarksjøen. Plans are to make the old canal navigable for leisure boats.


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This page was modified at 12-08-06