Sunday, March 31, 2013

Thorne to Castleford

 The problem with Thorne was that the ducks are getting rather blase about people and narrowboats and have started to move onboard when you aren't looking.

A really nice day and too good to stay put so we head off for Bramwith.


 Trundle through Stainforth and past the slag heaps that slipped over the railway lines.  Didn't stop at the pub either.

 Moored for the night just before the swing bridge at Bramwith.  Decent mooring and nice and quiet.


 Through the lock and the wind is getting up.  Heading for the New Junction.

 Knew it was bad when as I crossed the aqueduct the spray coming up from the River Don soaked me and the boat ended up rubbing along the side and held there by the wind.

 The road barrier at the first of the lift bridges refused to come back up.  I had left Lee on the bridge as she was going to walk to the next bridge.  However as I went along the wind blowing straight across the canal made it impossible to control the boat without it being underway.  The end result was that my bows pointed to the wrong bank and the no matter what there was no getting pointed in the right direction  so I decided to moor up and wait for the wind to die down.  There was no rush after all. The only snag along here is the absence of a signal to get on line

 In the end we were here for a few days.  Watching the Humber Princess go through and while she didn't have to stop there was still a problem with the wind pushing her off to the left.


 One day the snow came down and there was over an inch in the morning.  It soon went in the sun but it was a bit on the nippy side when we walked down to Barnby Dunn to do some shopping.

 At long last we are away.  It took a couple of goes to get moving and its lucky that Lee was here for when I tried it on my own after pushing the bows out by the time I had returned to the stern the bows were back on the bank.

 Coming up to the 'T' junction and on to the Aire and Calder.  Its right for Goole.

 There are moorings just before the Pollington Lock and it give a good view of the passing biggies.  Passed this on on the Trent earlier.

 And a full one heading for Castleford.

 Next day and its into the lock. Still a little on the windy side but it can stay like this for a while for me.

 The Jolly Miller moorings at Eggborough.  As the name implies there is a pub nearby and its for sale if you have a few quid spare.  Shops not too far away either.

 Kellingley Colliery and Knottingley coming up.  Loads of moorings here now that all the barges have disappeared. If I had a pram I could have picked  up some coal. :-)

 Picked up some firewood.  I would have thought that there wouldn't be a need for a fire this time of year.  Another junction and the course for Leeds is to the left and to York is on the right.

 On the corner is the boatyard and there is an old tug up for sale.  I am sure that it was here three years ago when I was heading for Rochdale.

 Ferrybridge and the mooring in sight.  Stopping for a couple of days.  Not far away is a Morrisons.  It is closer to Gagg Bridge but the mooring there is rather iffy.

It seems that Lady Wyre has got lost.  She plies her trade - trip boat - from the other side of Doncaster. Its her yearly outing I was told as she went by.

 Ferrybridge Lock and back onto the river.

 Under the bypass and on to the Ferry bridge. River running quite slow and its nice just to chug along.

 The view out on the river.  Trees along side for  most of the way.  At one point there is still the lifting gear for the Tom Pudding boats at one of the power stations.

End of the day and nearing the moorings at Castleford.

Fire lit and kettle on. This will do.

 Walked into Castleford on Sunday and not surprisingly most of the shops were shut.  Just on the other side of the river there was one open selling milk, bread veg etc and they also had wine, beer and coal so we are well sorted for now.

 Moved to the other mooring to use the showers etc.

Moving on towards Lemonroyd Lock and as there is no towpath marked we had a walk to see what happened to the footpath.. At the end of the first part there is the Boat Inn.  We learnt here that the path went all the way to the lock so Lee can walk the dog to there tomorrow. Maybe.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Preambling to Thorne

 After a quick trip to the States to sample the delights - of which there were many - of California its time at last to start this years trip.  First thing in the morning the mist came down but the sun was not far behind.


 A lovely day and its good to be underway heading for a couple of days in Lincoln.

 One of my favourite moorings in Lincoln.  The little island next to the Siemens carpark and a very short walk to the Archives.

  The river is flowing rather fast today as I enter Lincoln centre.

 A new cafe boat is tied up and with the narrowing of the canal the boat is slowing down.

 By the time I am at the Glory Hole the engine is working quite hard but making a steady speed.

 Its back to the long straights to Torksey.

 Stopping today at The Pyewipe Inn.  A brilliant place to stop for a meal.  Syd and Heidi are coming out from Horncastle to meet us. As usual the meal was spot on.

 The next day and it on to Saxilby to fill up at Tongs ready for the trip down the Trent.  The weather has cooled down somewhat so we stay and extra day til the sun comes out.

 and it does.  Sorted out the tide with Neil at Torksey Lock.  Haven't seen Richard and Ruth of nb Comfortably Numb.  Guess they must have already gone on to Newark.


 More lovely weather at Torksey.  Off out on the tide at 0930 ish but not much speed expected as its Spring Neaps.

 To keep on ones toes there is always the possibility of one of the big boys popping up.

The weather last and Gainsborough looks good.  One day I must make use of the floating pontoon.

 Ooh its a bit wide out on the Trent.  Spotted a fin in the water.  Fairly sure its not a shark :-) but could be a dolphin I suppose.

 West Stockwith Lock and a couple of hours in to the journey.

 Its getting cold by the time the M180 motorway bridge comes into sight.

 and the old lift bridge is even more welcome with only a mile left to Keadby Lock. 

Into the lock.  Slight problem as I get in.  Lined the bows up spot on and as I swung over to enter the lock the bows rise up.  I have found the sand bar at the lock mouth.  Slightly upstream and I get in.


 Moored up across from Phyllis and Spider T. Time to leave the car behind and plod on.

Couple of days and the last bit on to Thorne.  Waiting for the train to pass so we could have the bridge opened for us.

Moored in Thorne for a few days while I finished some of the bits and pieces that needed doing.  The water pump has taken to leaking and taking in air so that will keep me busy for one day. 

Then its off towards Leeds.

Preamble to the Summer 1

The one thing that stands out over the winter months was the large amount of water that ended up in the canal.  At one stage there was no way to get off the floating pontoon apart from a dingy we borrowed from further down the canal.

The piles holding the pontoon in place was usually about eight feet up in the air.  At its height the water rose by over six feet and the towpath was flooded and the cruisers on the finger moorings were floating over the mooring itself.

The water rushed straight through the lock and the river was only a few inches lower.  At some points on the Water Rail Way the canal was running over the path into the drain on the other side.  If the river had risen another foot it would have gone out into the countryside in general.

The dog was not amused in the slightest by the fact that she could only get to the grassy bits by boat.

Luckily we didn't run out of water as I would not have liked to try and manoeuvrewith that lot rushing past.

Water water everywhere.

Couldnt get to the boat by road either with the bridge flooded and the bins floating.