Our friend Brian travelled overland from England to Australia in the late 60s and said that in those days they travelled not knowing where their journeys would take them – it was before the days of the well worn back packer routes. This is how I feel about the Huddersfield Narrow – we know that eventually we will get to Huddersfield but each day seems to bring new obstacles to be overcome.
We woke again to rain but at least it didn’t last and that was it for the day. The hotel boat chap said good luck as we left and after the first two locks we found out why. There were two very low pounds. We wondered if the hotel boat and butty had had to let down a lot of water to get through last thing yesterday thus depleting the pounds, or maybe it was just very leaky locks. Alan was stuck in the middle of the canal and there was no moving the boat. We also had to let down some water which we did very gradually to get away with the minimum possible. We had read that the cill of lock 17W had been damaged and since repaired. That may be but the bottom gates could not be closed entirely and even the power of the water took a long time to force the gates together losing more water in the process. We came to regard a slow grind through the mud on the bottom as easy progress.
It came as a shock to come through the last lock and suddenly find ourselves in the middle of Uppermill. We moored near the museum. Its a convenient place but very dark and cold. I found myself shivering with a blanket over my knees this afternoon watching people in t shirts walking in the sun on the other side of the car park!
Today we did 2.45 Miles and 7 Locks
Statistics so far:-
1657.99 Miles, 977 Locks, 112 Swing Bridges, 71 Lift Bridges, 29 Tunnels