Friday, 29 November 2013

Return to Bath.

Map Reference   ST75966 65732
Distance   8.1Miles
Total 240 Locks 7 Tunnels
Running total mileage   287.3miles

Completed our brief trip along the Avon to Bristol, one slight drama was at Saltford Lock where a wayward rope ripped one of the mushroom ventilators from the roof of the boat. Spent an hour trawling the lock trying to recover it to no avail so will now need to find a chandlery to buy a replacement. Other than that the trip was fairly straightforward. Bath deep lock was again quite an experience but due to the lack of time (or daylight more like!) we did not have time to go up to the Pultney Weir as I had hoped so today’s photos are just of the locks and the entry into the Kennet and Avon Canal from the River Avon.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Back along the Avon

Map Reference ST68142 68738
Distance 10.4Miles
Total 230 Locks 7 Tunnels
Running total mileage 279.2mile

Well travelling back up the River Avon wasn’t too bad, the river flow didn’t slow us down as much as I’d expected, in fact we got from Netham Lock to Hanham Lock in pretty much the same time as we did coming the other way. Travelling against the current does give a lot more control to the process however. Our stay in Bristol was OK but, for what it was, it was quite expensive considering we had a week on the Thames earlier in the year for just over £60 and yet we only get 2 days in Bristol for £44.

When we get back to Bath I’d like to take the opportunity to get a photo of Pulteney Weir from river level before we go back into the Kennet and Avon Canal proper. If I manage it the photo will appear in the next blog.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Bristol (at last)

Map Reference ST 58460 72337                                                        
Distance 10.4Miles
Total 227 Locks 7 Tunnels
Running total mileage 268.8miles

So we have now at last reached Bristol, the end of the Kennet and Avon Canal (which actually finishes at Hanham Lock where the waterway then becomes owned by Bristol Docks). It was interesting coming down the Avon and into Bristol, the only part I remember from the previous visit 16 years ago was passing Bees Tea rooms (I think that is what it was called) before we got to St Annes. I know the dock area itself from living in Bristol for 5 years back in the 70’s.

We will stay here until Thursday when we will start back travelling against the current towards Bath. It will be slower but I hope that we will have more control than we had coming down with the current. All things being equal should hope to be back in Bath by Friday.

Monday, 25 November 2013

Between Swineford and Keynsham (Bridge 211)

Map Reference ST68142 68738

Distance 8.7Miles 
Total 224 Locks 7 Tunnels
Running total mileage 258.4miles

And so here we are on the way to Bristol at last. A good days cruising took us through the six locks of Bath (including the awesome deep lock) and out onto the River Avon. Moored for the night near to one of the Bristol Bath Railway Path bridges and hope to be into the Bristol Floating Harbour tomorrow. One thing particularly noticeable on this section or river is how unprotected the weirs are. On the Thames and Kennet if you were to make a mistake approaching the weirs you would be caught by the protection systems, on this river if you make a mistake you will end up on the weir! To think that I passed along this river back in 1997 with two non-swimming parents aboard along with wife, both of my kids and a niece, what could possibly have gone wrong!

Bath Deep Lock

Bridge 211 night's mooring

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Back to Bath (yet again!)

Map reference  ST 75919  65614
Distance 14.7 miles

Total 214 Locks 7 Tunnels

Running total mileage 249.7 miles

A quick change of plan having seen a change in the weather and we are now back at Bath with the intention tomorrow (Monday) of heading towards Bristol. It looks as though it will probably be our only opportunity this side of  Christmas so we have decided to take advantage of the (currently) favourable conditions. There is little rain forecast for the coming week, the river is down and there are neap tides so there is nothing else left but to hope for the best. If our plans work out we should be in Bristol by either Tuesday night or Wednesday fort a 48 hour visit before returning back to Bath in time for the Christmas Market.