Global Warming in Holland … The Netherlands Canels Freeze Over … The Return of Hans Brinker


The ghost of Hans Brinker says, Al Gore and global warming be damned as thousands Hans_Brinkerof Dutch strap on their silver skates.

Hey Al, they didn’t seem to get your memo on global warming in The Netherlands. For the first time in 12 years the Netherlands’ canals froze this month. The Dutch strapped on their skates ala Hans Brinker as the freezing temperatures afforded an increasingly rare chance to skate across their flat country.

After more than a week of cold, an estimated 2.3 million skaters, out of a population of 16 million, have taken to frozen canals and lakes, according to a poll released ahead of the weekend.

That number is expected to double if Queen Beatrix decides to don her skates as well.


Canals in the Netherlands no longer freeze every winter, so the chance to ice skate outdoors created a frenzy in Kinderdijk and elsewhere in the south. (Michael Kooren/Reuters)

“The number of opportunities you have to skate in the Dutch winter is decreasing,” said Jochem van de Laarschot, who usually speaks on behalf of Dutch food retailer Ahold but took a half a day off last week to skate.

A Rare Deep Freeze Warms the Dutch Soul

UPDATE I: 44% Say Global Warming Due To Planetary Trends, Not People

A recent Rasmussen poll shows that 44% of people now believe that global warming is due to planetary trends and not people. Hey Al, you seem to be losing the battle even though you have all of the liberal MSM in your pocket. All this and Al Gore is losing the propaganda war. In July 2006, 46% of those polled said that global warming was primarily caused by man, while 35% said it was planetary. Americans now are not buying that they are to blame.

Al Gore’s side may be coming to power in Washington, but they appear to be losing the battle on the idea that humans are to blame for global warming.

Forty-four percent (44%) of U.S. voters now say long-term planetary trends are the cause of global warming, compared to 41% who blame it on human activity.

Seven percent (7%) attribute global warming to some other reason, and nine percent (9%) are unsure in a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

Blaming man for global warming support waning. How soon will Al Gore be blaming man for the impending Ice Age?

Red State gets the prize for the best title of post for loss of support from the blame man crowd … “An Inconvenient Poll”.

If you liked this post, you may also like these:

  • Global Warming? Looks to be Like There is Actually Global Cooling … What Say You Al Gore?
  • Its All about the Timing … Global Warming Conference Held in Buffalo, NY with -6 Degrees Temperatures
  • Bloggers Offered (and accept) Netherlands Travel for Advertising Space
  • More Global Warming, Lake Erie Frozen Over, First Time in 14 Years … More People Cast Doubt on Man Made Global Warming
  • Global Cooling, Mini Ice Age … What Say You Al Gore?

  • Comments

    17 Responses to “Global Warming in Holland … The Netherlands Canels Freeze Over … The Return of Hans Brinker”

    1. caesu on January 17th, 2009 4:50 pm

      yes it was great fun.
      those photos of ice skating with the windmills in the background are beautiful.

      now everything has melted away already :(
      and not much frost is forecasted for the remainder of this month. :(

      it is becoming a very rare occurrence.
      i remember being able to ice skate nearly every year.
      i hope it won’t take another 12 years for the next time ice skating to be possible on the canals and lakes.

    2. EURobert on January 17th, 2009 5:40 pm

      According to the KNMI this winter is the second coldest of the last hundred years.

      I’m not much of an ice skater btw. I’m a real ‘koukleum’ (chilly person). I like the warmth better… Much better!

      But it yielded a lot of nice images:

      (And some video’s I posted before of which especially the last one is nice: )

    3. caesu on January 17th, 2009 6:32 pm

      #2 EURobert

      not second coldest of the last hundred years.
      but second coldest of this century.
      2003 was colder.

    4. Richard on January 17th, 2009 10:00 pm

      If you see Joran vd Scum out there on skates, please steer him to the place where the ice is thinnest.

    5. rightknight on January 18th, 2009 1:48 am

      Al Gore’s warm and sunny personality
      could thaw those canals in one
      convincing speech!

      Pass the hot chocolate.

    6. EURobert on January 18th, 2009 3:58 am

      # caesu

      You’re right caesu: ‘second coldest of this century’. But that’s a bit of a strange way to put it (by the KNMI – Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute). Because this ‘century’ is only eight years and 18 days old! (At my school they learned me that a century is a hundred years! …) So in that sense this ‘cold-record’ is not a real record at all. Especially when it’s only the second coldest year of this period. 2003 was colder! (???) Strange people down there in De Bilt…

      BTW: I just read the Wikipedia-article behind the ‘Hans Brinker’-link in the SM-article. LOL! This “Hans Brinker” or “The Silver Skates” is a real tearjerker if you ask me. And hardly anyone in the Netherlands knows it. And especially the little story of this boy who put his finger in the dike. LOL. Not very realistic… But a great metaphor for the idea that B•I•G problems often start very small! But it seems to be quite a popular children’s book in the US (a ‘children’s CLASSIC’!). Cool!

      # Richard

      Yes, I read on the forum a couple of weeks ago Jurine was back in the NL’s. I’ll keep my eyes open!

    7. Richard on January 18th, 2009 9:08 am

      EURobert, you’re saying that the Dutch aren’t familiar with the tale of Hans Brinker?

      This is a real eye-opener … after all, many of the images that Americans associate with the Netherlands, rightly or wrongly, are from that tale.

    8. Richard on January 18th, 2009 9:12 am

      At any rate, now that it is possible to skate on the canals, let’s hope that the works of some of the great 17th century painters get new attention.

      I don’t know enough about the topic to speak intelligently on it, but I think the term “Dutch school” was used for the interior scenes of Vermeer, Rembrandt, Hals, and too many other great artists to mention.

      While I’m blabbing … how relevant are the canals to modern life in Amsterdam? I know that in Bangkok, where I lived for a year, the waterways are still a vital transport link.

      And in Venice, of course, you don’t get anything else.

      But somehow, I would think that in Amsterdam (haven’t been there since 1969) they had largely been paved over or filled in. So please enlighten me!

      (For some reason, one thinks more of canals in Amsterdam than in other cities.)

    9. EURobert on January 18th, 2009 11:34 am

      # Richard

      No, actually we’re not very familiar with the Hans Brinker story. Well I guess most of us know the name HB and that there is a novel in the US about this character but I think only very few know the actual story; the one about the skating match and so on.

      And about the canals in Amsterdam: I think today they only have a function for tourism, for some houseboats and for some festivals. But I don’t live there so I’m not 100% sure.


    10. caesu on January 18th, 2009 1:00 pm

      #6 EURobert

      this winter isn’t over yet.
      that’s why the winter of 2003 is still colder.

      but this winter is well on it’s way to turn out to be colder.
      only one frost period is needed and the winter of 2003 is beaten.

      and i am also not very familiar with this Hans Brinker story.
      i think it is just a story for the American audience.

    11. Dolf on January 19th, 2009 2:37 am

      Hans Brinker (if its the finger in the dyke story) is written by an US author (Mary Mapes Dodge).

      not that much Dutch about it

    12. EURobert on January 20th, 2009 4:08 am

      # Dolf (and Richard: “… many of the images that Americans associate with the Netherlands, rightly or wrongly, are from that tale.”)

      The wikipedia article says that the author had a Dutch family as neighbours and that the ‘Netherlands-facts’ in the book are very accurate so it may be a relative good introduction to the Netherlands I suppose.

    13. Dolf on January 20th, 2009 9:45 am


      don’t know where you live, but I don’t live in the Holland of tulips and windmills.

      I live in Holland of: Philips, AkzoNobel, Shell, DSM, SmidtTak, Schiphol, Rdam Haven, ING

    14. Dolf on January 20th, 2009 9:46 am

      -> Amsterdam

    15. EURobert on January 20th, 2009 3:21 pm

      # Dolf

      I live in Twèèènte!
      You’re absolutely right about Philips, AkzoNobel, Shell, DSM, SmidtTak, Schiphol, Rdam Haven, ING (not forgetting HOLEC, STORK, Ten Cate, Rabobank, and so on which – as AKZO – all started in the east…). But I said: ‘introduction to the Netherlands’. Introductions start with the history?

      BTW: maybe you can answer Richards question about the use of the Amsterdam canals today. Only for tourism, recreation, houseboats and some festivals?

    16. Dolf on January 21st, 2009 2:35 am

      for today?

      basicly: Only for tourism, recreation, houseboats and some festivals.

      some tourists and/or tv hosts also use it for swimming ;)
      There was talk about using them more for freight transport, but i think that died the same death as that special freight tram.

      I only resent your everything started in the East remark (you provinciaaltje) ;p

    17. Mark on October 21st, 2009 2:09 am

      I know this post is almost a year old but I am very curious if they canals will freeze again this year (Dec 2009-Jan 2010) I am from Canada and love Amsterdam! If the canals freeze I was thinking of making a special trip down for a skate. If anyone lives around there or has any news on if the canals will freeze please email me. I seem to be having very little luck on the internet.
      I really appreciate it! Thank you!

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