A New Riverbed

Right in the middle
Situated on a rise in the land in the centre of the nature reserve, Haus Bürgel is a conspicuous landmark. It stands on the still visible foundations of a Roman fort erected in the fourth century on the left bank of the river. At that time, the Rhine marked the border with Germanic tribes on the right bank, who occasionally crossed the river for raids.

River dynamics
In the seventeenth century, dikes were built and the banks stabilized to control the Rhine, but prior to that its course changed many times. The humps and hollows you can see in the fields are old flood channels. They give an idea of the water's force and its ability to shape the land.
Auenblicke Rheinverlagerung
Changing sides
During extreme flooding in 1374, the Rhine cut off a loop between Zons and the old Roman fort. Its new channel put the fort on the other side of the river the only fort to be situated on the right bank. For the next several centuries, its inhabitants needed a boat to get to Zons (today there is a ferry service).
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