Gullies







Intro

In the guide the "Travel book to Ry and the Danish Lakelands" from 1941 you will find a description of a walking tour through Ry. At that time, if you followed the description in the guidebook, you would come from the village Siim.

Back then the writer of the book, Luplau Janssen, wrote: ”The road leads under the railway, but approximately 200 netres before, we reach the most interesting spot of our entire tour. On the field slope to the left of the road, some huge notches are seen in the heather and the grass, like some traces of a giant plough. There is every reason to believe that we here stand at the remains of the old Tingvej (Moot Road), by which people in the Middle Ages and perhaps in part of the Modern Age, rode or drove to the Moot in Gammel Rye (Old Ry). But how you traversed the river Gudenå, no one knows. Possibly there was a ford, perhaps some kind of ferry, or people turned south and passed through Emborg. However, these are just mere speculations”. This was Luplau Janssen’s description in 1941. Some decades later, the road system was back in focus. Forrester Tue Jensen from Rye Nørskov (Ry North Forest) had an interest in old place names, and he came across an interesting map in the archives of the estate. It said that the narrow passage at the river Gudenå opposite Holmens Camping was called Faldgårde in the 18th century. Tue Jensen examined the place very carefully, because he believed that there might be a construction – perhaps a medieval fishery – in that place. So he invited Mogens Schou Jørgensen from the National Museum of Denmark to examine the narrow passage at the river Gudenå, and indeed! Below the water level were the remains of a bridge and dam construction. In the river, dams radiated from both banks but in the middle these were interrupted by a 17 metres wide passage. The dams consisted of large stones supported by a bulwark of wood at the sides. Dating of the woodwork showed that the dams were built around the year 1,000 –during the Viking Age. In 1941 Luplau Janssen did not know what we know today, that the gullies, at which you stand now, are the remains of a very old road system, which crossed the river Gudenå. Rows of burial mounds on both sides of the river Gudenåen indicate that people crossed the river even before the Faldgårde construction was erected –perhaps there was an important ford in this place way back in the Stone or Bronze Age. The gullies along Skærsbrovej are now protected, and Skanderborg Municipality is responsible for gullies, so in future they will still be seen as the “huge notches” as described by Luplau Janssen. The oak trees in the area are intended to grow up and form a leafy canopy to give shade and to prevent the gullies from becoming overgrown.