Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Leeds City Centre

Here I am Rune
Distance 6.5 miles
Total 1280 Locks 70 Tunnels
Running total mileage 1795.7 miles 

Except for the final 100 yards or so to River Lock we have now pretty much completed the Leeds Liverpool Canal and, without any rush, and with a short excursion up the Rufford Arm, we have completed it in about 26 days (left Liverpool on 4th June, arrived in Leeds City Centre on 30th). I think the plan is now to have a day in Leeds and then carry on towards Goole Docks on Thursday so we should get there on Saturday or Sunday.
Rune moored......

......in Leeds City Centre

Today was a pretty warm day to be doing locks so it was just as well we had an ‘escorted passage’ through the two triple lock staircases with CRT staff operating the locks for us. This is apparently (or so one of the volunteer lock-keepers told me) because the section between Newlay Locks and Office Lock is ‘Bandit Country’ and the local kids tend to go swimming in the locks during hot weather so the ‘lockie’ was expecting trouble later today (he said after 3pm). In fairness all we saw on the way through were a lot of dog walkers, joggers and cyclists (perhaps these were ‘off duty’ bandits!) anyway our trip through went without incident. 
The view into River Lock from the River Aire

Monday, 29 June 2015


Here I am Rune
Distance 2.6 miles
Total 1268 Locks 70 Tunnels
Running total mileage 1789.2 miles 

Easily completed the planned trip today and we are now at Rodley ready for the run in to Leeds tomorrow, the light day today will be made up for by a harder day tomorrow since we will have 11 locks to do and about 6 ½ miles. Once again had some bod in a moored boat that we passed call out even though we were on tick-over and doing about 1mph. I think that the next one who does it is going to get verbal instructions on how to moor their boat properly! The problem as I see it is that they all moor their boats with lines at a right angle to the boat, this will always mean that any passing boat will first draw them back and then push them forward, and in the case of today’s boat it will bump the boat in front of it. If these boats were properly tied with mooring lines angled fore and aft the boat wouldn’t move half as much, and if they knew how to tie spring lines to their boat they wouldn’t move at all. Our boat is quite deep and the canal is quite shallow so even if we had a damn horse pulling it we would still be shifting quite a lot of water and moving moored boats about.

Tomorrow, all being well we should be into Leeds City Centre.

Sunday, 28 June 2015


Here I am Rune

Distance 6.5 miles
Total 1266 Locks 70 Tunnels
Running total mileage 1786.6 miles 

We have pressed on a bit today and are sort of north east of Bradford and north east of Leeds to theoretically we should be in Leeds by Tuesday. Today’s trip was OK although a couple of minor showers this morning but pretty much dry after lunch. I shall be glad to be onto canals with proper sized locks since I am tiring of getting out of these short locks, often involving getting wet from the leaky top gates. The guy in front of us at the Dowley Gap Locks got a proper soaking, probably not helped by me filling the lock behind him on the 2 lock staircase since it pushed more water at greater pressure through the leaks in the gate, I did apologise when we caught up with him at the next lock. Also had the interesting experience of being shouted at but some ignoramus in her boat moored below Dowley Gap. I religiously slow down to tick over as I pass moored boats however this person of limited intelligence chose to bang on her window and shout out ‘Slow Down!’ as we passed, I mouthed back to her ‘Do One!’ since the only way I would be able to travel any slower would be to employ a horse to pull the boat!!
Field Three Rise Locks
The plan tomorrow is for a fairly short day to Newlay Locks so that on Tuesday we can make it to Leeds City centre and the end of the Leeds Liverpool Canal (photo again compulsory).

Saturday, 27 June 2015


Here I am Rune
Distance 3 miles
Total 1260 Locks 70 Tunnels
Running total mileage 1780.1 miles
A bit of a slow trip down through the Bingley Locks (Five Rise and Three Rise) taking the best part of 4 hours. With just the one Lock-keeper working it was always going to be a slow job but then slow is what we do best on the Canal. The chambers in the locks were probably as short as any we have come across so far and getting from one chamber into the next involved putting the boat sideways across the lock, but then we’ve done that elsewhere so it isn’t any great challenge.

Bingley Five Rise

Bingley Three Rise

Tomorrow on through Saltaire and into the outskirts of Bradford.

Friday, 26 June 2015


Here I am Rune
Distance 5.2 miles
Total 1252 Locks 70 Tunnels
Running total mileage 1777.1 miles 

Today seemed to work out quite well, we only went as far as Keighley but travelling in a short convoy of three boats meant we only had to work alternate bridges, and as luck would have it the bridges that we had to operate weren’t the ones that jammed! The final bridge that we had to work was in fact the powered road bridge so that all that was required was the pressing of a few buttons. The irritation there however was that some muppet had moored his boat on the bridge moorings making it difficult to fit our boat on the mooring to operate the bridge with space to let the other boats pass, why do people do that??

The forecast for tomorrow is for fine weather so we will head into Bingley to do the Five and Three rise then, photos being compulsory!