The Mittelland Canal (German = Mittellandkanal) also known as Midland Canal is a German inland waterways connecting the waterways networks of Belgium and The Netherlands as well as the waterways networks in central Germany and in the west of Poland. Other connections are to Switzerland, Czech Republik, Slowakia, Hungary, Serbia, Romania and Bulgaria. As such the Midland Canal is the most important canal in Europe and longest of its kind in Germany.
The Midland Canal runs over a length of 323.50 kilometres beginning at Dortmund-Ems Canal, shortly after the town of Bergeshövede and ending at the passage into the Elbe-Havel Canal at Hohenwarthe in the German state of Sachsen-Anhalt.
This editorial is set to follow the run of the canal from its beginning at Bergeshövede up to its end at the locks of Hohenwarthe in the German state of Sachsen-Anhalt.
How many lock systems are in the Midland Canal? There are only three lock systems directly within the course of Midland Canal. All other lock systems connected to Midland Canal are the junctions to rhe rivers Weser, Leine and Elbe and to the Elbe Lateral Canal with its branch canals und another 12 locks. In all the Midland Canal only accounts for 15 lock systems which is relatively low compared to Dortmund-Ems Canal. However Midland Canal runs through lowlands over long distances without any significant gradients.
Three large lock systems are necessary to overcome large fall heights:
How many branch channels connect to Midland Canal? In fact, and compared to the length of the canal, we are talking only six branch canale which are (canal abbreviation in brackets):
Midland Canal connects to the rivers Weser, Leine and Elbe. At the rivers Weser and Elbe the canal crosses the rivers on massive trough bridges. In order to allow barges to descend to the deeper rivers connection channels were built:
Midland Canal runs through the German states of North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony and Saxony Anhalt (Sachsen-Anhalt). There are 25 inland harbours along the course of the canal which make a significant contribution to the economy. The harbours are listed below:
Midland canal begins near the township of Bergeshövede, in Tecklenburger Land, by branching off Dortmund-Ems-Canal at canal kilometre 108.36.