The Goole Escape, Danny’s 17th. 24th May

Selby Basin

Today passage had not been possible due to staffing shortages. Nigel was at Naburn this morning to pen a cruiser down onto the river, this would mean there being nobody available to pen us at a suitable time of the tide, so today had not been an option. This did however mean everyone had their radios on to listen in.

Lock cottage for sale

Around about 9am we could hear one side of a conversation on Channel 9, the cruiser was approaching the bridges. We all gathered at the lock hoping to see what we could see.

The amount of trees not only inhibit an advanced view of the lock, but also there are only a couple of places you can stand to be able to see Selby Rail Bridge swing.

Selby Rail Bridge

Air droughts were checked with the bridges. Yes they would need to swing. The cruiser was told to hang back whilst permission was sought for the Rail Bridge to swing. There was a gap in trains so the bridge keeper commenced the procedure. Selby Toll bridge followed suit, the traffic there a lot easier to stop.

Once the bridges were open the cruiser was allowed through, having to turn back round to go with the flow.

Open and ready

The skipper wasn’t aware that there was another bridge coming up, Selby Bypass Bridge, so we could hear conversations on the radio down there. Hope they made it to Grimsby okay.

Yesterday David had sent through a set of charts for Trent Falls, the Lower Ouse and the Lower Trent. Humber Charts. These lay out not only the depths of channel, but also the heights of the sand banks above the lowest tides, it is essential to understand these sections of the rivers. We printed them out, all the figures too small to read, ideally you’d want them on a computer so as to be able to zoom in at any given time. Under cover this would be possible, but we prefer to cruise with our pram hood down, giving better visibility all round, this does however have the drawback of things getting wet should it rain.

Trent Falls

Mick headed off to chat with David about the charts as I set too hoping to make the most a spare day to get some work done. I put together a story board of panto with photographs of my model and emailed it off to keep others informed.

Assistant hard at work

A blue van came past the chink in the curtains, Nigel was here, he pulled up alongside Sea Maiden. Time for the escape committee to convene.

David had been looking again at the weather at Trent Falls for tomorrow. The patches of sun were now replaced by rain and thunder, wind a touch more than we’d had on our journey up to Selby. He wasn’t too keen. The weather for Thursday looked much much better, sunshine and gentle winds. Tides would mean a later start, therefore a later finish. Another option would be to go to Barmby Barrage a day before and set off from there saving an hours cruise, giving us an extra hour in bed.

Selby Lock

Martin and Wendy on Lulabelle are thinking of staying in Selby to wait for the swing bridge at the end of the basin to be mended. A notice a couple of days ago had suggested the bridge would be lifted out mid to late June, opening up the navigation again. At the other end of the Selby Canal there is currently a height restriction at Tankards Bridge. Nigel confirmed that this was set at 7ft, a scaffolding bar flattening off the arch of the bridge. With the current fluctuation of the canal level with water coming off the fields 7ft was a safe height. This of course means Sea Maiden wouldn’t be able to go that way until the bridge is mended. The dredging on the Aire is scheduled for around about now, so the rest of the way back onto the Aire and Calder Navigation should be fine.

Nigel called someone up to enquire if there was any more news of the basin swing bridge, there had been a big meeting last Friday with lots of pointing going on. Permission is still need for a road closure from the council, then works can begin. The official line still being around three weeks.

River level

Maybe in a couple of days time passage up to York would be possible, the fresh water having decreased by then. Time waiting for suitable tides and weather could be done whilst bobbing back and forth between Naburn and York. The next morning tides not for a couple of weeks.

Conversation came back to Thursday. Low tide at Trent Falls would be 16:24. The cruise from there with the incoming tide would be around a couple of hours to reach Keadby Lock. So arrival would be around 18:30 maybe a touch later. All fine until the Keadby Lock Keepers hours were checked. Currently the shift finishes at 20:00, but Thursday 16:30! Oh B***er!!! We’d still be two hours away.

Maybe we could carry on to Gainsborough and moor on the pontoon there overnight and be up early for the next incoming tide? Maybe!

This would be further than David and Karl had planned and the conditions would need to be spot on for them to go, they may stay and pootle up to York for a bit waiting for the next set of suitable tides and lock opening hours.

Nigel would still be here at a suitable time to let us out tomorrow morning if the forecast improved and we decided to go for it.

We chatted through the charts with David. Learnt of another useful app called Anchor Watch. You can set the position of your phone (boat) on the app and should your phone move by more than 20m an alarm will sound. We then all went away to think things over.

Panto technical drawings

I got the drawing board out. Time to update my technical drawings for panto. Not too much has changed so alterations and a tidy up adding title boxes to my plans. I worked through most of them before it was time to pack up for the day.

Mick busied himself in the engine bay. The new bilge pump he’d put in a little while ago hasn’t been working. It makes the right sort of noise, but no water has been pumped over board. Yesterday he’d had a look at it, maybe the bodge job he’d done fitting it had failed!

The new bilge pump has a wider diameter fitting than the old one did. This means that the pipe from the skin fitting is too narrow to fit onto it. Mick has added a short length of narrower pipe which fits inside both pipes. This is taped and jubilee clipped in position as a temporary fix until we can get some pipe of the correct diameter.

Tilly keeping a watch on the weather

Now we watch the weather, river levels, and wind. What else could be added to our escape calculations?

Ah Yes! The Trent Aegir!

0 locks, 0 miles, 0 penning, 2 cruisers zooming by, 1 postponed cruise, 3 charts, 3 weeks, 1 very helpful Lockie, 4:30 clocking off, 3 to 2 to 1 possibly, 8 sheets, 3 pipes become 1, 3rd episode LOD, 1 cat who has given up all hope!

2 thoughts on “The Goole Escape, Danny’s 17th. 24th May

    1. Pip Post author

      Really hoping it’s a lucky day for us. Have a wonderful Birthday x

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