Wednesday, 6 August 2014


Sods law!
Geoff had no sooner cast off when a wide beam appeared the other side of the bridge.   Barney and I were walking again and we set off in reasonable weather, however things gradually deteriorated and about 1/2 mile from the first of the Greenberfeld locks the heavens really opened.  

Before that however soon after leaving we came upon a hire boat in difficulty as they were stuck on the side.
It was a Father and daughter on board with a small dog.  They didn't seem to be in agreement as to the best method of extricating themselves from the predicament they were in!   SO......................I stopped to help....Geoff carried on slowly as he couldn't find anywhere to pull in where he would not have ended up with the same problem.   Eventually we managed  to get him off but by then the daughter had disappeared in disgust with her father and also to search for the dog who had disappeared.   The dog had got into a field which the daughter was unable to get into.......she told dad that she would see him on the way back as they were intending to wind at the next available place.........he asked me where it was and I hadn''t a clue but it transpired it was further than he thought........I have no idea what the end result was....

By the time Geoff arrived, Barney and I were like two drowned we moored up and went below for a remedial cup of coffee.   We decided to sit it out until another boat came along to share the locks with.
Half way through coffee a hire boat appeared and luckily the rain had eased so we set off with them.  Mark and his two daughters were on a 4 day hire out of Snagill.  Having the girls working the locks made life easier than normal for Geoff and it is always nice to have someone to chat to in the lock.  We parted company at the top as we paused by the sani station.

During this time Boe had taken herself off in the car to explore Skipton and was to meet us at Lower Park Marina later.   Petroc is booked in there for 2 weeks whilst we travel south for Nephew Marc's wedding and a spot of friend visiting and Granny sitting...well Grandad sitting as well much to Geoff's delight

Boe did find us eventually.......after she became lost again!!!!!!  She said it was the map's fault.

So here we are all snug as a bug in a a marina.

Total distance:4.24 mile



Elapsed time:3h34m18s 

Average speed:1.19 mph (2.03 lock/mph) 

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

East Marton

A gentle 2 mile hop today to East Marton
leaving our lovely mooring
Barney & I walked to East Marton through this delightful countryside
Moored just along from this unusual bridge......any ideas why it was built so????
Moorings at East Marton

The village has a church, a lovely tea room, a livery stables and ........................
.....a pub
We indulged ourselves in the coffee shop which was very decadent but a real treat.   We then went up to the pub to check out food for the evening and it was so sunny we were forced to sit out and have a swift half!
We were expecting daughter Boe at some stage.......the time depended on how lost she got.

It transpired that she did get quite lost...ending up going in the wrong direction down the M65........the latter part of her journey was from Hebden Bridge where she had had lunch with a friend.   We haven't quite figured out why she was on the M65 in the first place.

She made it in the end and later we returned to the Cross keys where we had a very good meal.

Total distance:1.64 miles 
Elapsed time:0h58m9s 
Average speed:1.69 mph (1.69 lock/mph) 

Monday, 4 August 2014

Big Locking Day and Idyllic Mooring

Back to locks with a vengeance today, 11 completed and with no company.   We did the first two to the sani station in Gargrave and hoped by the time we had finished there might be someone else stirring but no luck....mind you it was still only just after 8 when we left there.   After completing the Gargrave locks I did make the tentative suggestion that we sit at the bottom of the Bank Newton 6 locks to wait for another boat, but that suggestion did not receive favourable attention!

After not a very good sleeping night I was somewhat exhausted by the time we had completed those and even Geoff was a little weary.  Doing wide locks on your own is not ideal.  The destination was intended to be East Marton but soon after leaving the Bank Newton Locks we found just the most idyllic mooring.   The views are fantastic and there is even shuttering to moor too, lovely and open and we are not aground one one side as we have been intermittently all the time in Gargrave.  (We wouldn't have been if we had gone up to the proper moorings but it was nicer where we were...less trees)

and the sun is shining!
It is an almost 360 panoramic view ...fantastic

We have tried to do it better justice with a video but think we need a bit more practice!   Click on the link
Our lovely peaceful mooring

Total distance:2.93 miles Elapsed time:5h1m40s Locks:11Bridges:11 Average speed:0.58 mph (2.77 lock/mph)

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Long Weekend in Gargrave

A weekend of very indifferent weather, which tends to colour ones perception of a place.  The Gargrave I remember of 7 years ago made a much better impression on me than this time.   However I have to say it is still worth a couple of days stop over.  There is a Co-op for all ones needs, although they did take a little persuading to reserve the paper for us for 3 days......there are 3 pubs, a church, a cafe etc.  The lovely gift shop I remember seems to have been turned into a well being & fitness centre, unless our memory of the place it was is faulty.  We never found what I remembered anyway.

Our mooring below lock 30 during one of the dry spells.  As can be seen our stern is a long way out.
Unfortunately although the rise and fall of the water as the locks are operated is not great, it is sufficient to put one side of us aground, so every so often we find ourselves living at an angle which I hate!
We have horses in the field opposite, and originally we thought this was a mother with her foal as they seemed so alike, but on closer inspection seeing the short legs of the little one, we think we may be mistaken.  She looks much more like a Shetland pony, maybe the mother has been a naughty girl and strayed!  They are so alike in colouring.
This is Geoffrey's may look benign here but whilst Geoff was in his very familiar pose leaning through the swan doors smoking a cigarette when it bit him on the finger, I knew smoking was dangerous....
Not the canal but the riverside, which would have made a nice walk in better weather........
Alongside Lock 31 there is still a coal yard, but nowadays it is not transported by canal
On Friday evening we had unexpected visitors in the shape of Phil & Hannah.  On someones recommendation we tried the furthest of the 3 pubs, The Anchor but were not overly impressed.
So on Sunday we decided to try the Mason's Arms next to the church and had an excellent Sunday Lunch.  Unfortunately, despite our good intentions, we fell foul of a pudding again and Geoff had the biggest bowl of crumble he has in in a long while!

Despite the weather it has been a good weekend, lots of reading done and I have at last written the article for our Parish Magazine on our trip on the Huddersfield Narrow Canal.  Of course Geoff has had the Commonwealth Games to keep him occupied....

Thursday, 31 July 2014


Geoff's reconnoitre yesterday decided us that we would moor short of the visitor moorings.   They were not at all as we remembered them from 7 years ago.  We remembered them as being nicely in the open not with tall thick trees on one side.  However it must be our memory that was at fault as the tree could not have increased so much in 7 years.

The day dawned gloomy again and the there were several heavy showers, but by the time we set off we had just the odd drizzly shower.

A big day today as we had our first lock since the top of the Bingley 5 rise over 2 weeks ago.   No other boats around so we had to rise on our own, not my favourite occupation in these double locks.   However after my stern warnings to my lockman to take it very slowly, we rose without too much drama.

Although it could not be described as busy up here, there is a reasonably steady stream of boats in both directions, including a lot of dayboats from Skipton and Snagill boatyards.

Moored before the 2nd lock opposite the cricket ground.   One of those moorings where we can get the bow in but not the stern.  However it is nice and open and not far into town (village??)   There is also no limit here and it is 72 hours on the visitor moorings.

After coffee I took a walk into Gargrave and discovered that I hardly remember it at all...sad thing when your memory goes.

Total distance:2.16 miles 
Elapsed time:1h29m50s 
Average speed:1.45 mph (2.11 lock/mph) 

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Goodbye Skipton

Whilst the south still seems to be basking in sunshine, in the north things have degenerated somewhat.
After a last shop in Skipton, we set off in the gloom and dare I say cold........still we were not planning to go far.
We found yet another nice mooring in the open just before the swing bridge in Thorlby

For most of the day we were on our own but later in the afternoon one other boat moored some way behind us.   Note the glowering sky
By late coffee time we were moored up and could indulge in one of the delicious cheese scones we had discovered in Skipton.

Geoff then departed, together with his faithful friend, to walk the couple of miles into Gargrave to suss out mooring for the morrow

Total distance:2.03 miles 
Elapsed time:1h 9m 28s
Average speed:1.75 mph (1.75 lock/mph) 

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Return to Skipton

It is a good job that Monday is one of our two light eating days as this was what Geoffrey polished off after his Sunday lunch yesterday.  Admittedly I was allowed a couple of spoonfuls.
Since this photograph was taken he has had a visit to the barbers!
So earlyish Monday we gently wandered back to Skipton, after going in the other direction for about a mile until we could turn round.

We used the sani station and then tried our luck round the corner after the junction and we were in luck.  We found a congenial spot with a nice wide bit of towpath for Barney.  He likes to sit and watch the world go back and is very responsive to the many people who stop and make a fuss of him...he likes them even better if they have doggie treats in their pocket. 

So we have stayed here a couple of night doings not a lot, mooching around the town, little bit of shopping, lots of reading...aint life grand.    The only blot on the horizon is that we seem to be in a black hole for the TV....never mind we have 8 episodes of Endeavour recorded!!!

Tomorrow it will be onward towards Gargrave......but not all the way......
Total distance:3.22 miles 
Elapsed time:2h26m57s 
Average speed:1.32 mph (1.32 lock/mph)