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Boat Blog: The Odyssey 2015 – Day 22

Posted by indigodream on 25 August, 2015

Monday 10th August

Skipton to Gargrave

Skipton canalscape...

Skipton canalscape…

 

It was persisting with rain when we woke up so we decided to delay our start and enjoy a leisurely breakfast and a bimble around town – minus the hounds this time. We had some shopping to do, and Skipton is replete with outdoor/treking type shops – perfect as I needed a boat fleece (or two!) and Richard needed some waterproof boots. Every boating weekend this year I have left my fleece at home because it’s 25 degrees in Surrey, then by the time we get oop north it’s distinctly chilly! We had a very good shopping trip – especially as I also found some very nice frocks for work in a quirky clothes shops by the Tour de France sheep!

We also found a couple of decent pet shops where we bought some very nice, but not too stinky, tripe sticks for the hounds and a selection of puppy foods for Ollie (he needs calorie dense but balanced foods to maintain his weight).  We needn’t have left the hounds on board, as Skipton high street is uncannily dog-friendly – all the shops we visited said “oh you could have brought the dogs, we let them inside”! But maybe after yesterday’s adventures a quiet morning on board won’t have done them any harm. I’m pleased to report that Ollie has made a full recovery from his crisis a few weeks ago – he’s still ancient with multiple problems, but he’s pretty good for his age.

A southerners view of Yorkshire - tight industrial revolution terraces and soaring hills behind....

A southerner’s view of Yorkshire – tight industrial revolution terraces and soaring hills behind….

We got back on board just in time to shelter from a vicious rain/hail storm – nothing nicer than being snug inside with good food and good coffee while the rain made an unbelievable racket on the boat’s steel roof.

We set off after lunch, just as the sun emerged – it didn’t last long, but although it was overcast, the rain was finished for the day.

We were happy to say goodbye to the last of the interminable swingbridges today, but then we were back to locking – amazingly we’re still not at the summit – what a magnificent landscape this is!

We had a curious experience at Holme Bridge Lock – there were two boats waiting to come down but the lock was set for us to ascend. We were sharing the canal with a hire boat who expressed an interest in sharing the lock with us. We thought nothing of it and locked up smoothly as a pair. At the next lock we were greeted by an irate and officious little man from the hire company – he said that the hire boat shouldn’t have come up the first lock without him; in fact, he said WE shouldn’t have gone up the lock without him. I beg your pardon!

Cruising with Ollie and Herbie is a quiet affair...

Cruising with Ollie and Herbie is a quiet affair…

He went on to give the hire boat some truly weird advice which involved the helm (all the crew were on shore), running from the tiller to the front of the boat to throw up his front rope to the hire boat “instructor” while the back of the boat slewed all over the lock. In the meantime I waited patiently outside the lock waiting for them to get sorted. I mused on the fact that there may such a thing as too much advice and felt very sorry for the hire boat’s crew!

We shared locks up to Gargrave where the hire boat got into strife again by accidentally pulling up to moor in what turned out to be a winding hole. This time they were “advised” by a CRT man walking the towpath. Luckily they found a space a little further along – wow, I bet they were ready for a beer!

In the meantime, Richard had bagged the mooring space directly nb Jubilee – summer home of fellow blogger Halfie. We’d hoped to meet them on this stretch and our rendezvous couldn’t have been better. We went of with the crew of nb Jubilee (John, Jan, David and Penny) to the Old Swan for a merry dinner. The food in the Old Swan was plain pub grub, served by a diligent but uninformed young waitress who tried very hard. At least the pub was dog friendly and had plenty of room for Herbie and Ollie. We finished the evening with a few drinkies on board Jubilee. We hadn’t been on board Jubilee before – she’s lovely and has a particularly fine galley and hidden cupboard for the whiskey bottles!

When we left the pub we were surprised it was still light – we’re far enough north to notice the longer summer days; no doubt we’ll notice the shorter winter days soon!

Photoblog:

Temptation :-)

Temptation 🙂

One of Skipton's canalscapes...

One of Skipton’s canalscapes…

Looking up the Springs Branch - there's no winding hole at the end so we didn't venture, though it looked charming....

Fred Truman in action :-)

Fred Truman in action 🙂

An unusually shapely modern bridge..

An unusually shapely modern bridge..

Quirky...

Quirky…

More quirkiness at Niffany moorings...

More quirkiness at Niffany moorings…

How do you get a 70' boat through 60' locks - cut her in half of course :-)

How do you get a 70′ boat through 60′ locks – cut her in half of course 🙂

Views...

Views…

And more views...

And more views…

Cruising through a picture postcard...

Cruising through a picture postcard…

The gold lettering on the lock beam is a poen - I like the idea, but you don't get to appreciate it from the boat...

The gold lettering on the lock beam is a poem – I like the idea, but you don’t get to appreciate it from the boat…

Looking back towards Ray Bridge on the approach to Gargrave..

Looking back towards Ray Bridge on the approach to Gargrave..

 

 

 

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