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Bisse de Saxon-42122
Heritage

Bisse de Saxon

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Heritage

Bisse de Saxon

The longest bisse of the Valais with its 32 kilometre long path
 
Water intake altitude 1,850 m, in the River Printse above Siviez
Length 32 km
Date of construction 1876
 
This bisse begins its route by crossing the mountain meadows of Tortin and of Siviez, then cuts across the spruce forest as far as the heights of Haute-Nendaz. It continues its way towards the mountain meadow of Pra da Dzeu and rejoins the several centuries-old larches of the Mayens du Dzora. While crossing the Forêt Verte, it winds its way as far as La Tzoumaz. After having leapt over the 'dévaloirs' overhanging Ecône, it finishes its course vertical to Saxon.
 
The inhabitants of this village of the Rhône valley must really have lacked water for their crops in order to undertake such an audacious project. The works began in 1865. Unfortunately, for technical reasons, the project had to be interrupted and was followed by a court case which lasted about ten years. Finally, the works continued in 1874 under the direction of Joseph Fama, owner of the casino and baths of Saxon.
 
Numerous structures had to be built all along the course ; dry-stone walls, tunnels for the passages in the rocks, passage of the water in wooden channels...
 
In 1876, the first water-filling took place and the bisse assumed its function until 1964. To ensure the surveillance of the canal, three guards were necessary over the length of its course. These men lived in cabins constructed along the bisse. In 1999, an association called "Garde du Bisse" was created with the aim of reviving this canal which holds an important position in the history of the Valais.
Bisse de Saxon-42122
Bisse de Saxon-42122
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