Monday, 20 May 2013

To the end and back again

Sunday 19th May to Monday 20th May 2013

With only a few miles to the end of the Lancaster canal it would be a pity not to see that through; as well as this last final bit of cruising we also needed to fill with water; so waiting for a boat to complete their water fill we prepared the boat for the off – when they were ready we gently edged out only to have to hold our position as they decided to wind right in front of us – could not believe it!!

Anyway we pulled into the water point; attached the hose and started when a hire boat approached from the other way – they breasted up and we had a good chat whilst the water flowed – always nice to meet others and with time of little importance, it is amazing how quickly it seems to pass.

We were soon away and heading northwards – the M6 imposed itself on the canal after just a couple of miles; after that it was a case of the canal reminding us just how shallow it is – seemingly more so that we had been used to.

The countryside is still pretty amazing

Without much fuss we reached the terminus and found a reasonable mooring spot between two narrowboats – seems less cruisers at the end than further back. Our stern was out a bit from the bank, but as we have now got used to, the plank came out and it came into it’s own yet again.

We had a short walk up to the first of the Tewitfield locks before checking out the Longlands pub for a Sunday lunch; Diane also checked out the farm shop and associated craft shops just across the road.

The marina at Tewitfield

The terminus
The menu was too good to resist, so we dropped Banjo back on board and headed back for an extended lunch.

Just to attempt to wear away a few of those extra calories from lunch we took an evening stroll to the end of the locks and the end point of the northern reaches canal section before it hit the M6 again – seems as though it was just on the border between Lancashire and Cumbria.

This is the end of the northern reaches locked section -
just on the top left area you might see the Cumbria sign from above

The regeneration of this canal to Kendall benefits from the locks all being ready for gates to be hung, but there is an awful lot of other work to be done to finish the job – but there is a plan and enthusiasm to get it done – not sure we will be around to see it.

The locks are still intact - just need the gates and paddle gear
and they are operational

You can see just how close this canal runs to the M6

The mooring whilst pretty close to the passing M6 traffic, it was rather quiet – we are continuing to be amazed at the insulation we get from the double glazing and the foam wall lining paper – so as a consequence we slept soundly.

We had sat down the previous night to nut out some type of schedule we needed to get ourselves back in time for the return Ribble crossing; as well as that we also needed to schedule in another pumpout and a diesel fill and also being able to stop in places that we wanted to either see again or see for the first time – each place being of interest.

just a kid at heart
This schedule did involve us leaving this morning and heading back towards and past Carnforth to moor up at Bolton-le-Sands.

With more time we would have found spending more time at the terminus a realistic alternative to leaving, but we were away – just taking it rather sedately – the depth of the canal dictating the speed which was comfortable for us.

Do these cows know anything about the impending weather
that we should know?

railway viaduct

A quick stop at Carnforth to restock the larder – things on the list had missed the cut for the previous shop – just a day or so earlier.

On our way northwards about 4 days ago we saw a couple of pontoons which had been put in – one near bridge 23 and the other just by bridge 24 – these were for the use of the water  bus which operates along here – but this year doesn’t start until the end of May – so we decided to moor just south of bridge 24 – no problems getting close to the edge.

After getting some work done – a good days effort for today, so happy with that, we were off for a “short” walk to the seaside – Diane then suggested and bit of a round trip via Hest Bank, and a nutrition stop at The Shore Café (where we had been previously).

not bad eh! - a cottage by the seaside

not your average beach with white sand
Back along the towpath and the “short” walk of 5 miles was thankfully over – for Banjo – he collapsed on the floor, once inside – we were off to the pub, which fortunately had its entrance from the towpath only a few yards from the boat – The Royal.

Not much else of any  note to report on after this – thankfully – we joined the dog and collapsed as well !!

9 miles

Totals: 1698 Miles, 1294 Locks, 56 Tunnels, 28 Lift Bridges, 130 Swing Bridges

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