Rhein-Herne Canal

 

The Rhein-Herne Canal is a German inland waterways of 45.60 k in length with five canal locks systems, running  through the middle of the Ruhr area, thereby connecting the German cities of Duisburg, Oberhausen, Essen, Gelsenkirchen, Recklinghausen and Herne. The canal ends near Henrichenburg where merges with the Dortmund-Ems Canal.

 

 

Editorial on Rhein-Herne Canal - Images, Information, Travel & Recreation

 

Rhein-Herne Canal runs dirctly through the heart of the Ruhr area and is one of the most important inland waterways in Germany because the canal connects the big German industrial cities in the Ruhr area with the large seaports of Hambuburg, Rotterdam and Antwerpen. On top of that the canal developed into a top recreational area within the Ruhr area that is visited by thounds daily and especially during weekends. The Canal is home to watersports, fishing / angling and last but not least to nature perservation.

 

 

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The course of the Rhein-Herne Canal between Duisburg-Meiderich and Herne - map source google maps
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Barge on Rhein-Herne Canal before entering the locks at Oberhausen
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Inland Waterways Germany - source Department for Geo Information South, Regensburg. Provided according to GeoNutzV Bundeswasserstrassen German regulation

 

 

General Information on Rhein-Herne Canal

 

Rhein-Herne Canal was planned and constructed during the time of the Germann Empire. It became necessary to built a canal through the southern Ruhr area to ensure stable supplies for the steel works. Moreover the canal connected the Dortmund-Ems Canal with the river Rhine. In its course the canal crosses the hard coal mining fields of the Ruhr area.

 

Construction started in 1905 and the canal was opened on July 17th 1914. In the 1960s the original canal capacity for barges carrying up to 1,350 tons was no longer sufficient because at that time new barges came into service with much higher loading capacities. It were the large Rhine barges especially, with loading capacities of up to 2.500 tons, that made an extension of the canal an imminent matter. Between 1968 and 1995 the canal was expanded and also canal banks were stabilised. Up to our times extension works on the canal keeps going on.

 

The Rhein-Herne Canal branches off the river Rhine at Rhine kilometre 780.40 and first runs through Duisburg Harbour. The first locks in the canal is Meiderich Locks at canal kilometre 0.65. Large motor ships with lengths of up to 110 metres and a width of 11.45 can use the canal, permissable draft is at 2.80 metres.

 

There are five locks systems in Rhein-Herne Canal:

The canal route goes over a length of 45.60 kilometres from Duisburg-Ruhrort Harbour through the southern Ruhr area and merges with Dortmund-Ems Canal at Henrichenburg Locks. Freight shipped on the canal is mostly coal, coke, rare earth, oil, era, building materials and food supplies. After Midland Canal and Wesel-Datteln Canal the Rhein-Herne Canal ranks three with regard to traffic frequency.

 

Although built to support Ruhr industry and to improve transport facilties, nowadays the canal serves as a highly valued recreational area. Walkers and cyclists have discovered the beauty of canal and countryside. Locks are frequently visited only to watch the barges in the locks.

 

Also recreational boating and watersports use the canal over its entire length, meaning we find rowing and sailing clubs everywhere alongside the canal. The canoe association put the Rhein-Herne Canal as an official canoe route in their canoe guide. However, swimming is not allowed in the Rhein-Herne Canal.

 

Beteen Oberhausen and Castrop Rauxel lies the so-called Emscher Island (Emscherinsel), an area 34 kilometres long, placed between the river Emscher and the canal. On this island a 70 k long hiking path was set up, integrated into the already existing hiking and cycling path called "Emscher-Weg" (Emscher Path) and "Emscher-Park-Radweg" (Emscher Park cyclepath). Emscherpark liest with the City of Essen directly bordering the north banks of the canal. At the end of Emscherpark follows another park called Nordsternpark. Only in a few hundred metres distance Gelsenkirchen Locks is situated. 

 

 

 

 

 

Rhein-Herne Canal - Oberhausen Locks (Schleuse Oberhausen-Lirich)

 

The double lock chamber system at Oberhausen-Lirich is the second out of five locks in the Rhein-Herne Canal.

 

Both lock chambers overcome a fall height of 4.10 metres. The north chamber measures a length of 190 metres and 11.88 metres across, with the south chamber also measuring a length of 190 metres and 11.99 metres across.

 

A bridges crosses over the locks, which is open to public traffic also allowing pedestrians to watch the ships in the locks.

 

Address:

Schleuse Oberhausen-Lirich

Kreuzstrasse 3

D-46049 Oberhausen

 

Canal kilometre: 5.68

 

Responsible:

Waterways and Shipping Authority Duisburg Meiderich (Wasserstrassen und Schifffahrtsamt Duisburg-Meiderich)

 

Opening times / Operating times at Schleuse Oberhausen:

apart from different opening times on bank holidays:

both chambers: Monday and Sunday: 0600h - 2400h; Tuesday to Friday: 0000h - 2400h

 

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Rhein-Herne-Canal Oberhausen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks

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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks

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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks - Barge in lock chamber
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks - Barge in lock chamber
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks - Barge leaving the lock chamber
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks - Barge leaving lock chamber

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Rhein-Herne Canal close to Oberhausen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Oberhausen Locks - barge arriving at the locks

 

 

Rhein-Herne Canal - Gelsenkirchen Locks

 

The double locks system at Gelsenkirchen ist the third locks system in the Rhein-Herne Canal. Both lock chambers measure 190 metres in length.

 

Gelsenkirchen Locks (German = Schleuse Gelsenkirchen)

North Lock Chamber: length 190 metres, width 12 metres

South Lock Chamber: length 190 metres, width 11.94 metres

 

Fall Height: 6.20 metres

 

Address:

Schleuse Gelsenkirchen

An den Schleusen

D-45881 Gelsenkirchen

 

Canal kilometre: 23.18

 

Responsible:

Waterways and Shipping Authority Duisburg-Meiderich (Wasserstrassen und Schifffahrtsamt Duisburg-Meiderich)

 

Opening times / Operating times:

apart from bank holidays with differing opening times:

Both chambers: Monday to Friday 0600h - 2400h, Saturday + Sunday 0600h - 2200h

 

 

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Rhein-Herne Canal Gelsenkirchen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Gelsenkirchen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Gelsenkirchen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Gelsenkirchen Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Gelsenkirchen Locks - Barge approaching the locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Gelsenkirchen Locks - Barge entering the locks

 

 

Rhein-Herne Canal - Herne East Locks (Schleuse Herne-Ost)

 

The double chamber lock system is the last locks at Rhein-Herne Canal; after the locks a wider stretch of the canal follows, called "Herner Meer". The canal merges with Dortmund-Ems Canal at canal kilometre 45.60. At Herne East the double lock chambers overcome a height difference of 12.80 height which is the equivalent of an average four storey residential building. When looking down at the closed gates from the level of the locks bridge one does have quite an impressive view.

 

Both lock chambers at Herne East have a length of 190.00 metres, with the east chamber measuring 11.98 metres across and the west chamber measuring 11.93 metres across.

 

Address: Schleuse Herne-Ost

Pöppinghauser Str. 16

44628 Herne

 

Canal kilometre: 37.26

 

Responsible:

Waterways and Shipping Authority Duisburg-Meiderich (Wasserstrassen und Schifffahrtsamt Duisburg-Meiderich)

 

Opening times / Operating times

Apart from bank holidays (different opening times)

Both chambers: Monday and Sunday 0600h - 2400h, Tuesday to Friday 0000h to 2400h

 

 

 

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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - Looking down into an abyss
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - flooded lock chamber
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - closed lock gates

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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - flooded lock chamber
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - Barge in the ascent approaching the locks coming from Gelsenkirchen
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - barge during locking
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - Barge preparing to leave the locks
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - barge leaving the lock chamber
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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - barge leaving the lock chamber

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Rhein-Herne Canal Herne Locks - barge has left the lock chamber