9th - 12th June 2006
Friday 9th June (Very
hot and sunny all day)
- Met at Alan's house and departed via the Pork Pie shop
in Wetherby to purchase one large Pork Pie
- Headed onwards in Jim's car to arrive at Morrison's
in Skipton where "Early Starter" fried breakfasts were consumed (Except Paul)
- After purchasing sufficient provisions for the trip,
the crew headed for the Pennine Cruisers boatyard to board the Narrowboat
- The crew was given ample instruction on the
navigation of the boat by Ray who helped navigate the boat to the first fully
automated swing bridge, where Alan took great delight in stopping all the
traffic whilst the narrowboat was gently negotiated through the bridge.
- After several more manual swing bridges, the first of 6
double locks at Gargrave was successfully passed. The crew found the
heavy double gated locks much more difficult than on previous holidays and
were much troubled.
- The crew considered in necessary to devour the entire
Pork Pie after the exertion of the locks.
- Jim considered it essential to allow the crew a stop
at the Anchor Inn at Gargrave for 1½ pints of Boddingtons (except
- Paul made Egg Mayonnaise and tomato sandwiches for
all the crew on route, which were much enjoyed.
- A further 8 locks were negotiated, including the
"Bank Newton" flight of 6 locks.
- Arrived at 7-10pm at East Marton to where the Captain
permitted the crew to have an evening drinking and dining at the Cross Keys public
Bradley moored at East Marton
Famous double road bridge
that can be seen in the distance of the other picture
- Copious quantities of Black Sheep ale together with
some Butterfish steaks, Ale Pie and Gammon were greatly enjoyed by all
- Two members of the crew succumb to the delights of the
Lemon Meringue pie.
Saturday 10th June (Very hot and sunny all day)
- After a comfortable night on board, an excellent fried
breakfast was prepared by Jim & Neil.
- The delights of the Greenberfield locks, just short
of Barnoldswick, were enjoyed by all, where Alan pointed out the fact that
this was the highest point of the Leeds Liverpool canal and marvelled at the
canal water feed from a reservoir some 10 miles away.
- After stopping for water, we continued on our way
past the two Rolls Royce and one Slumberland factory, to arrive at Salterforth
in an attempt
to locate toothbrush shop for Neil (who had forgotten to pack the item). On
discovering that the nearest shop was over 15 minutes walk away, Jim
considered it necessary for the crew to sample the Deuchers Ale from the
Anchor Inn, in
the beer garden (see below).
- The fare at the Anchor Inn was inspected and the crew
considered it a reasonable establishment to spend Saturday evening.
- The crew returned to the narrowboat in time to reach
the Foulreach Tunnel (1mile long) in time for the 2pm traversing slot, where Paul
expertly navigated through the dark and wet tunnel.
for the 2pm tunnel "Slot"
Traversing the Foulridge Tunnel
Emerging 19½ minutes later
- After leaving the tunnel, we passed a suitable winding
hole to turn the boat. However, at the insistence of Neil we continued
past, as he was confident that there was another just before the Barrowford Locks. However, his knowledge proved to be unfounded and
the crew had to undertake the difficult task of reversing the narrowboat
back down the canal past numerous moored boats. This was a dangerous
and daring manoeuvre, but completed without any problems by excellent
teamwork by the now skilled crew. The task of turning the
boat was achieved with Alan at the helm and we were able to moor up for a
lunch of ham and tomato sandwiches, with a little football.
- At 4-15 we departed the moorings to attempt the
return journey through the tunnel. The crew were much perplexed by the
absence of traffic light signals at this end of the tunnel, but Neil raced
through the tunnel at "break neck" speed to arrive at Foulridge wharf with a
hot and complaining engine.
- After a unsuccessful toothbrush hunt at Foulridge,
the crew returned to the boat to continue their epic journey back to Salterford, where we moored for the evening at 6pm close to the Anchor Inn.
- Jim considered it necessary to go ahead of the other
crew to sample the waters, whilst the remainder enjoyed the evening sunshine,
before heading down for dinner.
- Alan found in his washbag a complimentary toothbrush
courtesy of American Airlines, which enabled Neil to immediately carry out a
thorough tooth cleaning exercise, much to the delight of the remainder of
- The crew joined Jim in the Anchor Inn for additional
Deuchers ale and some much deserved dinner of Scampy, Ale Pie and Giant
Sunday 11th June (Very hot and sunny all day)
- After another comfortable night on board, the crew left
their moorings at 7-50 in an attempt to make the long journey all the way
back to Skipton.
- Breakfast was prepared on the move and consumed
moored at top lock of the Greenberfield locks, where the crew filled with water
and made good use of the facilities provided. Breakfast comprised the
remainder of the sausages and bacon, together with scrambled egg and tomato.
- The three Greenberfield locks were completed in
tandem with another narrowboat, after which a long and pleasant journey
through East Marton and the meanders before arriving at the Bank Newton
flight of six locks.
- A near catastrophe was narrowly avoided when Jim was
attacked by a swan, whilst passing their nest with young. Only the
quick thinking of the captain and careful use of the barge pole saved the
- The crew continued past the Anchor Inn in Gargrave to
moor between two locks where they walked into the town to visit the Old Swan
public house, where a number of pints of Copper Dragon were consumed
together with some excellent sandwiches.
- Jim rejoined the boat at the lock to continue through
the remaining three locks back into Skipton.
- Moored just short of the boatyard, as can be seen
"Bradley" moored in Skipton for the last night
- The captain allowed shore leave to explorer the
delights of Skipton and to locate a possible oriental eating place and some
real ale houses.
- A pint of Copper Dragon (Skipton brewed) was enjoyed
sitting outside at The Royal Shepherd and the locals consulted regarding the
best eating places. The Thai House restaurant was selected and large
banquet was eagerly consumed.
- Afterwards the crew felt much bloated and decided to drink no further ale (except Jim) and elected to walk up
the picturesque Springs Branch of the canal towards the castle.
- Found the boatyard owners own large new widebeam boat
moored and spent some time talking to Pam and Ian (Owners) about the merits
and costs of owning our own narrowboat.
- Met Jim later outside the "Narrowboat Inn" where a
last ½ pint of ale was enjoyed, before returning to the boat.
- Awoke during the night to hear rain on the roof of
Monday 12th June (Rain and one clap of
thunder in the morning, with sun later)
- After Neil was despatched to purchase more milk, a
healthy breakfast of Weetabix and toast was consumed before packing our
things ready to hand the narrowboat back to its owners.
- Cast off at 8-55am to travel to last few hundreds of
yards back to the boatyard where our belongings were transferred into Jim's car
for the journey back to Wetherby.
- As responsible canal travellers, the crew
participated in the British Waterways wild life survey and Vole Watch, which
was submitted via the internet on our return
- All agreed that this was another very enjoyable and
educational canalboat adventure.
END OF HOLIDAY
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