Friday, 24 July 2015

End of the Huddersfield.

Byram Arcade Huddersfield

Locomotion Bridge
Well we really have come a long way since the last post, as currently we are in Plymouth for a week or so.  We finally made it to Huddersfield on Thursday which is the end of the Huddersfield Narrow canal and the start of the Huddersfield Broad Canal!  We spent a couple of nights in Huddersfield before working the Locomotion lift bridge and moving on, on Sunday.  We paired up with a boat called, by coincidence, Peregrine.  As it was a broad canal we though we would be able to share the locks.  Well yes they are wide locks but they are short, only suitable for a 57.6ft boat.  We discovered that whilst 2 57ft boats will fit in the lock, you can’t then open the gates when you get to the bottom.  The first lock we did manage, but the second we had to refill and take one boat out and proceed singly.  However after 9 locks we were on the Calder and Hebble, part canal and part river.  These locks seemed a bit bigger so we paired up again.  Cruising to Brighouse with Peregrine and spending 2 nights there.  During the course of this time we have become good friends with Rene and John who are on Peregrine.  It was with some regret that we left them on Tuesday with us heading towards Sowerby Bridge and them turning heading back they way we had come.  So Falcon is safely moored at Shire Cruisers and we are in Plymouth for the next week or so.  Will catch up with as many of you as we can, or back on here in August.
One of the locks we could share with Peregrine

Yes there really is a place called Fall Ing,
But we are going the other way
as we don't want to fall in'

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Guillotine Lock

Starting to empty the lock

Well today I actually cruised for a short while.  The locks are so close together that I have walked most of the way.  Some parts I have walked 3 times over as if the next lock is really close I will go ahead to prepare so Paul can go straight in.  But to go back to Monday, we arrived in Slaithwaite on Monday after 8 locks.  We then went for a walk around the village only to fine the launderette is closed until further notice.  We had dinner on board and I was just making a cuppa when a boat came up through the lock making the pound we were in even shallower, we were already a couple of feet out from the side.  Do we decided to set off through the one lock and hopefully more water.  The lock was the only guillotine lock on this canal and the only one we have ever been through!  As you can see we made it safely through.  Today we arrived in Milnsbridge, had been told there is a launderette here.  So we loaded ourselves up and set off only to find it shuts on Wednesdays!  Ah well at least we have a nice mooring here and know what we will be doing in the morning!

Going out under the gate!

Sunday, 12 July 2015

Standedge Tunnel

Falcon with a cleared roof heading towards the western portal

Getting water just before entering the tunnel ahead
Well 2 more days and 11 locks found us at Diggle moored up on Thursday all ready for our passage through on Friday.  Managed to find a couple more nice coffee shops along the way too.  Spent some time clearing the roof of various items, bikes, planters and our log box etc in readiness for Friday morning when the guys came to measure us to make sure we would fit through the tunnel.  Hurrah all was well.  We set off just after 2.  Canal and River Trust supply a chaperone to accompany you through.  The idea is he stands alongside the steerer to give advice along the way and to check in at various safety points.  Well as we have a traditional stern there was no room at the back for Terry, our chaperone, so he sat with me in the cratch.  Then every so often he popped his head up with advice which Paul couldn’t hear!  Any way all went well, with a few minor bumps we completed the trip in just over 2 hours.  The sunniest day of the week and we were underground!  Having arrived safely at Marsden we decided to stay there a couple of nights.  Draw back being no signal. Not TV, phone or internet.  We forced ourselves to go to the pub for a meal and even their internet didn’t seem to work!  Today we have moved on, 11 locks but only one mile towards Huddersfield, still in Marsden but at the other end!  Tomorrow we plan to cruise (well Paul will be cruising but again I will be walking!) on toward Slaithwaite, about another 8 or 9 locks depending where we moor.

Eastern portal of the tunnel after our successful trip through

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Tesco Again

Well on Thursday we worked 2 locks then moored by Tesco so we could get supplies.  We are never going to go hungry!!  Friday was an interesting day.  The water in the pounds between some of the locks was very low so on a couple of occasions I had to walk on to the next lock to let some water through.  I walked through Scout Tunnel, trying not to notice the bats flying around in the dark, and I didn’t have a torch!  Did manage to find one lovely muddy puddle when I stepped in it! 

Paul helping with the paddles
Still Paul made it safely through only to go aground just before the next lock!  Saturday we arrived at Greenfield and went into the small marina there for a couple of nights. 
 Paul managed to get some painting jobs done and as you can see in the picture we were again moored right by Tesco!  Think we should buy shares!  Yesterday we caught the train into Manchester, travelling in 20 minutes what had taken us 3 days!  We are now moored in Uppermill and this afternoon we caught a bus to Marsden up over the Pennines into West Yorkshire.  Marsden is the other end of Standedge Tunnel which we are booked to go through on Friday.  Hopefully we won’t be too tall.
Couldn't get much closer, but you can see the hill behind.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Setting out on the Huddersfield

Finally back in the locks, first one on the Huddersfield Canal
Didn’t make it into,  Manchester as on Thursday we visited my cousin, Dawn, in Stockport as her husband, Dave, was loaning us his car so we could drive to Plymouth for the weekend.  Just a quick visit so we could attend a surprise 25th Wedding Anniversary party for Alan and Karen.  Paul used to work with Alan in Safeway.  Well the surprise worked as they didn’t have a clue.  A good time was had by all.  Whilst in Plymouth we managed a family lunch on Saturday with most of the family there, Sunday a quick catch up with Dave, Paul’s brother, and girlfriend Sue.  We stopped at Taunton on the way back to have lunch with Paul’s cousin, Alison and her husband another Paul.  So it was almost nine when we made it back to Stockport on Sunday night.  Dave brought us back to Falcon on Monday.  After visits to the launderette, supermarket and pump out, we headed on to the Huddersfield Canal.  Completed 4 locks before mooring for the night at Stalybridge.  Just after we moored another boat came along and it was a couple we had met in Banbury last October.  So they moored in front us and later on we went on board with them for wine and chat.  Today we have had stroll around the small town.  There is an Aldi and a Tesco, so spoilt for choice here.