Information about mudflat walking with Wadloopcentrum Pieterburen

Preparing before your walk

Despite choosing to take part in your mud flat walks with the oldest and the most experienced mudflat walking organisation in the country, it doesn’t come without risks. Because of this we advise that you prepare yourself at home before your mudflat walking experience. But you will not have to do this alone. On this website we will happily help you to understand how to prepare yourself. If you have any further questions, call 0595 528300.

What are the risks?

Here you will learn about the risks and how you can prepare yourself for them. Further on you will find a checklist that will help you to understand the correct way to pack your rucksack. Finally you will find a list of addresses of the meeting points where you will start your tour.

  • 1. Hypothermia.

    Hypothermia is a life-threatening situation because you are walking through water and are constantly walking through an exposed environment. The combination of wet clothes and strong, cold winds, can contribute to hypothermia of the walker.

    Therefore, it is obligatory to carry extra clothes with you in your rucksack, even if the weather is beautiful or the forecast is favourable.

    So: take extra clothes in your rucksack: a warm jumper or cardigan and a windproof raincoat. Make sure this is a good quality raincoat not a plastic poncho. This will blow away in the wind and is no use. See picture.


You wouldn’t assume that delays cause a great risk but they can become very dangerous. This is because, when we start walking the water is still ebbing away from the land. When the tide turns the water will rise again. If there is a delay on the way, we will not reach the land on time and we will be taken over by the rising tide. Therefore delays can become life-threatening.

What can you do as a participant to reduce this risk? Prepare yourself. Take serious note of the information given on this page and follow the advise carefully.

  • 2. The Right Shoes. This will help to protect your feet against the sharp edges of the Japanese oyster. Without shoes you may get nasty cuts and plasters will not be useful in this environment. Blood will not clot under the water and will continue to bleed. So: try not to use this as an opportunity to get rid of old shoes. Old shoes will not be of a good enough quality.

    The soles of old shoes will become loose as the salt water will loosen the glue. This means you are almost guaranteed to have to walk barefoot. You owe it to yourself and the members of your group to arrive with appropriate footwear on. This is essential.
    We strongly advise that you buy a pair of cheap high basketball shoes. See the picture. On no account should you wear wellies. You will lose these in the mud and the edge of them will cut into your legs.

  • 3. Physical condition. To take part in the mudflat walking a good level of physical fitness is required. As mentioned earlier: the water will not wait. We will be walking to a tight time schedule, which is determined by the tides. Delays can be life-threatening. A crossing is not suited to everybody. If you’re not physically fit enough for this activity, you can try the combined boat trip with a walk, which is strenuous enough for many people.

  • 4. Enough food and drink. This applies to all mudflat tours. Ensure that before your walk you have had enough to eat and drink. During the walk you will be using great amounts of energy and you will loose lots of bodily fluid. Eat and drink beforehand but make sure you do not overeat. Take food and drink with you in your rucksack for on the way. The best is a couple of sandwiches and normal water. Sweetened foods and drinks such as energy drinks can cause indigestion and poor performance. Always keep these sweet foods for the end, or better after the walk.

  • 5. Puncuality. Leave home on time. Because of the tides we cannot wait for walkers that arrive too late. Prepare your trip to the starting point when you are at home, before you leave. Do not always rely on your Sat-Nav and check Google Maps or a map on where you need to be.

  • 6. Injuries. Prevention is better than cure. If you know that you twist your ankle regularly or you have knee or back problems or even if you suffer from agoraphobia, we recommend that you do a boat trip in combination with a walk, to still be able to enjoy your day.

  • 7. Sunstroke and Sunburn . To prevent sunstroke and sunburn, take head cover and plenty of sun cream.

  • Checklist: What to take with you on your mudflat tour:

    What clothes should you wear?

    • Clothes that are allowed to get dirty.
    • Outer layer and inner layer- Preferably clothes that do not absorb lots of water and that will dry quickly. No cotton. Sports clothes would be the most ideal.
    • Shorts.
    • Coat or jacket.
    • Cap or hat for protection against the sun or cold.
    • High trainers and socks.

    What clothes should you take with you in your rucksack??

    • Warm jumper or cardigan.
    • Windproof raincoat.
    • A complete change of clothes in a waterproof plastic bag.
    • Dry shoes.
      • What else you should take:

        • Clean towel in a waterproof plastic bag
        • Sun cream
        • Enough to eat and drink
        • Sunglasses
        • An old brush to clean feet, shoes etc.
        • Plastic bag for wet clothes
        • For cold weather: Gloves, hats and scarves
        • All of the above are absolutely essential to take with you

        Where and at what time do we register for the walk?

        Below are the names of our tours and the addresses of their meeting points.

        You will have already received your starting time from us. If this is not the case please look up your times in our mudflat walking schedule. This does not apply to our customized walks for larger groups. For information on the group walks contact the Wadloopcentrum Pieterburen: 0595 528300

        Meeting Points:

      • Zwerftocht Noordpolderzijl: Parkingplace 't Zielhoes, Zijlweg 4, 9988 TD Usquert
      • Zwerftocht Pieterburenwad: Wadloop Winkel, Hoofdstraat 84, 9968 AG Pieterburen
      • Combined boat and walk trips:

      • Lutjewadtocht
      • Weststrand Schiermonnikoog
      • Brakzand Schiermonnikoog
      • Zeehonden wadlooptocht (Seals)
      • Sailing and walking on Engelsmanplaat and bird sanctuary Het Rif.

      • Register and sign in on your particular boat, at the back of the fishing harbor of Lauwersoog. Park in the carparking P3 and P4. Follow the blue signs P3 and P4 or the yellow ones: MS Boschwad.

        Our ships lie about 75 metres past the blue hangars with the address Haven 30, 9976 VN Lauwersoog. See our second map on our contact page. contactpage.

        Meeting points for a crossing to the islands or sandbanks:

      • Ameland: Restaurant Land en Zeezicht on the Quey in Holwerd, parking on the parking place of the ferry de Grandyk te Holwerd.
      • Schiermonnikoog Brakzandtocht: Register and sign in on your particular boat at the back of the fishing harbor of Lauwersoog. Park in the carparking P3 and P4. Follow the blue signs P3 and P4 or the yellow ones: MS Boschwad. Our ships lie about 75 metres past the blue hangars with the address Haven 30, 9976 VN Lauwersoog. See our second map on our contact page.
      • Schiermonnikoog XXXL: Haven 20 9976 VN Lauwersoog, Park on P3 of P4
      • Rottumeroog: Haven 20 9976 VN Lauwersoog, Park on P3 of P4
      • Simonszand: Haven 20 9976 VN Lauwersoog, Park on P3 of P4

      • A good preparation is half the job. Please come well prepared and on time.

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