We have been out seven times this year, with trips of between 11 miles (our last trip this year) and 108 miles (Anderton to Swanley via Llangollen) and lasting between 6 and 20 days (South Pennine ring). We’ve spent 4 fewer days on board than last year and travelled fewer miles with fewer locks, but have been on more new waterways.
We’ve had too much water …… Todmorden lock, Rochdale canal, June
and too little. Clayton top lock, Ashton canal, May
We have experienced the deepest narrow lock in the UK (Vinegar lock on the Ashton), deepest broad lock (Tuel Lane on the Rochdale), and traversed the highest summits in England and Wales; the Rochdale is the highest broad canal (600’) and the Huddersfield Narrow the highest narrow canal (645’).
We have been through three tunnels over a mile and a half long, including Standedge, the highest, deepest and longest tunnel in the UK. Other firsts for us were guillotine lock gates, chain-operated lock gates, the Anderton Boat Lift and the Calder and Hebble Spike!
Anderton boat lift, July
Miles (approx): 513
Narrow locks: 378, broad locks: 126, large (river) locks: 8
Moveable bridges: 48 including those fixed open
Major aqueducts: Pontcysyllte and Chirk
Tunnels; 33 including Harecastle (2919 yards), Preston Brook (1239 yards), Standedge (5698 yards), Wast Hills (2726 yards).
Days on board: 94
Grand Union, North Oxford, Coventry, Birmingham and Fazeley, Trent and Mersey. Bridgewater*, Rochdale*, Ashton*, Calder and Hebble Navigation*, Huddersfield Broad*, Huddersfield Narrow*, River Weaver*, Shropshire Union, Middlewich Branch, Llangollen, Worcester and Birmingham, Droitwich Junction. Birmingham Canal Navigations; Main Line, Wolverhampton Level, Wyrley and Essington* (part), Walsall*.
* indicates new waterways for us.
Moored at Devil’s Garden near Big Wood, River Weaver, July
Marinas stayed at
Calcutt, Aston, Droylsden, Anderton, Swanley, Droitwich Spa.
Next year - north, south, east …?