Category Archives: Calder Hebble

She Lied. 14th April

Kirklees Top Lock to Crowther Bridge 16

M62

The M62 wasn’t far away from our mooring and we were soon passing under it as people zoomed by over head. We left a wave for Bridget and Storm who would be crossing later in the day and carried on to Brighouse.

At the lock landing firemen were doing something with pipes and pumps. Was there a nearby fire that they were pumping water to? No aroma. Were they pumping out a flooded building? No arcs of water. They were actually trying out a brand new pump that had been a touch obstinate to get going, the river being a handy place to try it out.

Tight into the corner
Stern just clearing the cill

Brighouse Bottom Lock had just been set for a boat coming down. Their boat a 60fter, I left them to it. We’ve been there with an over long boat, all fenders (Bow and Stern) lifted, sitting at a diagonal gradually lowering the water and tucking in under the lower gates walkway to avoid catching the cill at the back. The crew were well into the swing of the locks, a bow rope passed up to the top to help pull the bow out from behind the closed gate. Lillian was six inches shorter than the boat today, but she had a rounder/squarer stern. This boat was quite pointed which afforded them a few more inches, they’d been able to do all the locks from Sowerby Bridge forwards, we’d had to do the top two backwards and then only had an inch to spare.

Our turn next to go up. We took it steadily, avoiding the recess, but this put the drain hole for the well deck right in line with the water coming into the lock, the paddle only a couple of turns raised. The well deck got quite damp, as I noticed this I tried to drop the paddle to ease the flow, but the paddle didn’t want to close. Good job we always travel with the front doors closed, if the water had managed to get inside then she’d have started to sink!

Pumps working

Soon the flow calmed down and we carried on to the top, just as the firemen got their pump working sending huge plumes of water across the river.

Brighouse Top Lock was much easier. A boat was having a shampoo and set on the water point, we’d considered topping up the tank but carried on to moor at Sainsburys. Shopping list in hand we ventured forth, of course managing to leave any vouchers on board. Mick headed back for them which gave me time to peruse the cooking isle. Somehow a large 2lb bread tin made it into the trolley, this was soon followed by some new socks for Mick (well he will keep leaving them places!).

Supplies!

Last but by no means least was the wine isle. 3 of each. The wine cellar restocked. Just a shame that the trolley wouldn’t accompany us back to the boat, but we managed, just.

After lunch we pushed off, avoiding low flying cardboard tubes that the youngsters of Brighouse wanted us to wear. Plenty of people were out on the towpath, right busy it was.

Ganny Lock

I hopped off at Ganny Lock, from below it looked familiar, but it wasn’t on a river section so it couldn’t be that lock. From above though it was that lock. Which lock? Five years ago coming down hill, taking care at each lock, looking after our home we arrived at the lock at a similar time to a boat coming uphill. The lock was in our favour so we started to go down, one paddle slightly lifted until the bow could go under the walkway and the stern be kept off the cill. The lady from the other boat went to lift the other paddle, I asked her not to, quite politely, and explained why. ‘But my husband is struggling down there with the current on the river!’ She was quite rude. If she helped and things went wrong then he’d be struggling on the river for a lot longer! Today I realised that she’d lied, he was on a canal.

Brookfoot Lock

The only problem we had today was a plank of wood getting in the way. Onwards and upwards, another couple of locks to where we’d chosen to moor for the day. Surrounded by trees, good digging and friendly cover to pounce the rest of the afternoon away in. Except they stood there talking, looking past the trees, talking some more. COME ON!!! It’s great Mrs Tilly stamp of approval is on it’s way. They looked at me, talked some more. She came in and no matter how hard I tried to get her to stroke my head she wouldn’t open the door! Something about the fantastic trees only just hanging onto the banks of the river below, if I fell in then I’d only be able to get out on the other bank. How stupid! I’d never fall in!! She didn’t listen to reason and I stayed inside.

I so love walls like this

An Instagram acquaintance of mine who lives in Canada is looking for a narrowboat to rent from mid October for six weeks and/or for three months March to June somewhere in England or Wales. The usual channels of hiring a boat for so many weeks doesn’t work. So they are looking for a private hire, they are experienced boaters who have references as they have done this several times before. A boat they had booked has just fallen through as it has sold, so I said I’d give her a mention. Last year they moved far too fast for us to meet up, hopefully if they can find a boat then our paths may cross this year. Here is a link to Lucy’s advert if anyone is interested.

Happened across this picture of geese whilst doing some research. The one I saw yesterday was one of these.

5 locks, 1 flood lock, 3.16 miles, 4 firemen, 1 long hose, 1 pump, 60ft, 6 boxes of cardbordeux, 2lb tin, 7 pairs socks, 2 carpet tubes, 2 fundraisers, 3 sets of gates not staying put, 1 river far too close for comfort, 1 narked cat, 950 and falling.

Stationary Traffic. 13th April

Bull Bridge to Kirklees Top Lock

It turns out that people who follow us by email might have been getting posts twice. The first one from WordPress when a post goes live and a second later in the day, when for some reason Blogger (where the old blog was) had got hold of the new post and didn’t want anybody to miss it. Mick has done some tinkering, so hopefully peoples inboxes are no longer being filled up with our posts. Thank you to Duncan for complaining pointing this out to us.

Lidl yesterday served some of our needs but certain reserves on board are running very low, mainly wine! So today we needed to press on to reach Brighouse where we can moor up behind Sainsburys, they also have a wider range of gluten free things, so it won’t just be wine!

Battyeford Lock where every paddle worked

Mick first popped out to get a newspaper, with breakfast done we pushed off headed back out onto the river then back onto the cut at Battyeford Lock. Here the club looks like they have built themselves a nice new dry dock, it may have been here last time we passed but more noticeable today.

Battyeford Hauling Bridge
with it’s curve to the towpath

Along the next section we passed NB Blue Moon now heading back to base, it looked like they’d teamed up with another boat. Back out onto the river again turning under Battyeford Hauling Bridge. This is a roving/snake bridge that spans the wide river and would have meant a horse could stay connected to a boat as it crossed over to the other side, the bridge not getting in the way of the towing line. I don’t recall having seen a metal roving bridge before and certainly not one so wide, still not a patch on those on the Macc.

How many feet have walked over this bridge

There were movements up at Cooper Bridge Lock, when I hopped off the lock was being set for a small cruiser to come down. Their boat had an alarming list, maybe someone very large was sat on the starboard side. Mum and Dad did what they did bickering whilst their teenage daughter carried on regardless far more clued up than her parents.

A comment was made by Mum, Dad disappeared below to return a short while later saying that someone had left a tap on, there was quite a bit of condensation on the windows. The water was now in the bilges, he wasn’t happy. Now he’d have to find the bilge pump! I think I’d rather know where that piece of equipment was. It looked like the water was what was causing the list, at least the boat wasn’t gaining water so unless it toppled over they should be alright.

Hope you don’t topple over

We helped them down, then Mick got Oleanna out of their way.Off they went at their jaunty angle heading downstream still bickering away. What a lovely Easter break!

Caution recesses

We worked our way up. Coming down these short locks you have to be careful of the cill and the wide walkway on the bottom gates, nudging your way forward as soon as it is clear. Going up so far had been okay, Mick nestling Oleannas bow up against the top gates, but today the gates were slightly different. Two large recesses about six inches deep, one on each side of the centre. There was enough space for Oleanna to drift from the centre line and her bow fender was sitting nicely in the recess. I signalled to Mick to nudge back as the lock was filling. No back! We were now bickering. I could see the potential problem but he couldn’t.

Luckily Oleanna was nudged back and her fender cleared the recess. I could then explain why I’d been so adamant. At the next lock Mick could see the recesses. It seems we’ll have to take as much time going up as we took coming down these locks, we just won’t have to faff so much getting past the gates.

Cooper Bridge Lock was a favourite with a blog reader Heather ( Pedalboats), she hasn’t posted anything for over a year, sadly I think something must have happened to her. I had been really looking forward to meeting her, almost expected her to be sat on one of the lock beams with her dogs waiting for us.

Cooper Bridge

Then up to the junction with the Huddersfield Broad Canal. Last night we’d toyed with having a short detour down to Huddersfield as tonight is the opening night of Mikron’s new show, opening at the Lawrence Batley Theatre. But the only seats left were right on the sides and it wouldn’t be the same watching one of their shows in an actual theatre, they should be watched outside by the canal with a pint in hand. Looking at their tour dates we’ll catch up with them somewhere this summer, further south.

How many times did I sit in that traffic

So we turned right, keeping to the Calder and Hebble. We’ve only been this way once before and not in this direction. Having said that Kirklees Low Lock is very familiar to me. Turning off the M62 to head into Huddersfield I would sit in the waiting traffic on the A644 and wonder how long it would be before I would be travelling the canals and actually moving faster than the traffic jam I was sat in. I never saw a boat at the lock, so I waved back today.

Not another woofer!

Up Kirklees Top Lock and we pulled in for some lunch. This soon became our overnight mooring, we had just enough wine to last us one last evening. The M62 is audible from here, but is just far enough away to be able to forget about it. Tilly did her best to make the most of it, but too many woofers spoilt her fun. I even had to give two greyhounds a serious ticking off, although one of them was a blackhound!

4 locks, 3 flood locks, 3.08 miles, 1 newspaper, 35 degree list, 1 running tap, 2 recesses, 29 photos, 7000 to 2000, 4 glasses left, 17 years, 2 many cables, 2 busy.