Tag Archives: Ribble Link

Day 55 – Ribble-Tastic

WARNING ALERT – Lots of photos….we took over 140 today!

Today was our return journey on the Ribble Link. Our passage was booked for 9.21 with four other boats (three narrow boats – nb Silver Fox, nb Comfortably Numb and nb Knightlow, and one yoghurt pot, Breeze). As we were moored at the front, we went in the locks first with nb Comfortably Numb – with Toby making a text book reverse maneuver into the lock.

The first three locks were a staircase, in any other picture you would think we’re going up as the boats are facing forward, when in fact we’re going down the locks.

Between the locks, the passage can be quite narrow, I stayed at the bow on lookout.

After the last lock, we continued on Savick Brook which was much lower than on our upward journey, but with a rising tide; we were close to running aground a few times. You can see the tide marks on the banks and the difference. Maybe going first wasn’t such a good idea??

We were held on the pontoon ahead of the sea lock until 12.45. Just enough time for some soup and bread and a cuppa. All the boats cast off and this time we were the last. This did play to our advantage, as there is a right turn on to the River Ribble and the oncoming tide, we saw the first boat get pushed back quite a long way. When it was our turn, it was a case of ‘pedal to the metal’ and floor it! Toby did a grand job making the turn.

The view after the turn is quite dramatic, with such a wide expanse of water and low lying ground. It was such fun following the other boats, it’s not often you follow in convoy on a narrowboat.

The video sums up the day for me, I’ve had such a fun day and something I won’t forget.

We continued along the River Ribble looking out for our marker called Asland Lamp which guards the sand bank. We heard a few grumblings from the engine bay which was of some concern, once we rounded Asland Lamp and on to the River Douglas, they disappeared – phew, it must have been the convergence of the currents under the boat.

After the turn on to the River Douglas, the river seemed more gentle and the bank started to creep back in.

We soon reached the sea lock at Tarleton and back on the Leeds and Liverpool canal. Toby exchanged contact details with the other boaters, and his phone hasn’t stopped pinging all evening, I don’t think he can cope with all the replies! We’ve exchanged photos, sadly the ones received were all taken on a phone so the zoom hasn’t worked so well.

Day 37 – Hey Diddle Ribble

There we were at about 8:30 poised to be at Tarleton Lock at the appointed time of 9:57 when a CRT man turned up and told us to be there by 10:45.  We could have had another hour in bed.

We were one of the first pair of boats through the lock having followed “Good Life” from the overnight mooring.


The journey down the Douglas around Asland Lamp and along the Ribble was fairly straightforward and uneventful.  We kept up a good speed between 3.5 and 5.3 miles an hour running the engine at around 2200 rpm – somewhat higher than Oliver’s normally sedate rev count. Some of the markers shown on the chart appeared to be missing in practice but that didn’t cause any problems.  It was a bit windy at times but stayed dry apart from a small shower early on.  The landscape seemed remarkably flat and the width of the river made it almost seem as if we were at sea.  Toby had a good time adjusting the tiller to take account of the varying tidal flows and the wind.  We sometimes seemed to be crabbing along at quite an angle.

Peter took photos while Toby helmed and Romy took on the task of feeding the crew.

Another narrow boat from Preston turned into Savick Brook just as we were arriving so there were two boats on the landing when we arrived.  We tied up alongside the first one and were then joined by two other  boats from Tarleton one of them mooring outside us.

We were lucky when we came to leave as we were second away and after the first CRT manned lock all the others had been set for us as far as the staircase.

Peter had helmed magnificently all the way up Savick Brook.  In spite of his obvious skills however Romy insisted that Toby took over for the tricky manoeuvre reversing into the staircase.  He pulled  his tummy in, pulled the tiller this way and that and there we were!  It has to be said he managed this and the very tight exit from the top lock with great aplomb.

Just after starting our journey along the Lancaster Canal we went past a rather tight looking space at the recommended mooring place. As there were no other decent options nearby we decided to reverse back and give it a go.  Toby was convinced we could get in and we did but only with touching fenders at bow and stern.