Line 18 Part 2
I visited this part of line 18 in different stages. At first the stage from Achel to Eksel. In the winter of 2006 I did the second stage from Eksel to Houthalen. Almost all of the section is tarmaced. I had to get off my bike to see some of the bridges and other old railwaystuff. The cycle-track goes through a beautiful area.
The Belgian part of the line had a different history compared to the dutch part. Economicaly not a succes, but the line handled a lot of military traffic. The section from Neerpelt to Achel closed in 1973, the rails were removed in 1985. The section between Neerpelt and Eksel closed as late as 1999 because of transport to the military domain. The section from Eksel to Houthalen closed in 1986, the rails removed in 1988. Nowadays there's a cycle-track along a big part of the old railway. Only a small part around the station of Neerpelt is in use, it's a part of line 19.