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Tour 2002

Index

20 - Hebden Bridge to Littleborough - Rochdale Canal.

Tuesday 16th July 2002

We left at 07:55 and started on the spectacular assent to the summit. First lock was Shop Lock, then after the main road, Library lock. This has a guillotine bottom gate. This was originally replaced when the road was widened. When the lock was first restored it had pointy gates in the old water saving 57ft 6ins slots, but subsequently these were replaced with a new guillotine to restore the Rochdale throughout to it's 70ft lock length. Next came the "Great Wall of Tod" a huge Engineers Blue Brick wall rising out of one side of the canal, supporting the railway against the steep valley side. Soon we were in one of the most impressive flights of locks in the country - Gauxholme. 
The Summit was reached at 12:55. The short summit pound was soon passed through and we entered West Summit Lock No 37 at 13:10. As ever a bit of water juggling was needed in the short pound below Lock No 41. The wandering BW locky gave us mis-information about which lock of the Littleborough Flight was too narrow for a pair of narrowboats, but we did not come unstuck. We still don't know which the "narrow" lock is! We finally moored up just below Littleborough Lower Lock No 10 at 16:05. This was no mean feat as it was very shallow below the lock. We came to grief on a large rock and eventually managed to get the bow in enough to get off. The only deep mooring was on the old wharf, right up near the road, but this was already taken. A rather hopeless family arrived on a cruiser with a stern drive and did serious damage to their drive / prop in the shallow water.
That night we went to the rather un-inspiring Waterside Inn, by the newly re-opened Ben Healey Bridge.


Todmorden. Shop lock No 18. Supermarket just to right. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Shop lock No 18. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Looking back at Shop lock No 18. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Frogmoore and Earnest waiting for Library Lock No 19. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Library Lock No 19. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Towpath tunnel - Library Lock No 19. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. The Bramsche Bar does a fine pint of Timmy Taylor's, but having younger members of crew with us we could not visit this time.  Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Library Lock No 19. Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. Library Lock No 19. Rochdale Canal.


The "Great Wall of Todmorden". Rochdale Canal.


Todmorden. No 19. Rochdale Canal.


Wadsworth Mill Lock No20. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme. Shade Lock No 21 and the very ornate Gauxholme Railway Bridge. Some of the locks had such side gushers that we went in singularly. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Railway Bridge and Gauxholme Lowest Lock No 22. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Lowest Lock No 22. Some of the most dramatic canal side scenery in the country. Here the canal appears to go up the impossibly steep valley to the right, in fact it sweeps round to the left. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Lowest Lock No 22. Gauxholme Middle Lock No 23 beyond. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Middle Lock No 23. Rochdale Canal.


Looking back at Gauxholme Railway Bridge and Gauxholme Lowest Lock No 22. Rochdale Canal.


Valley side view of Gauxholme - stunning. Rochdale Canal.


Valley side view of Gauxholme Middle Lock No 23. Rochdale Canal.


Valley side view of Gauxholme. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Middle Lock No 23. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Middle Lock No 23. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme Highest  Lock No 23 and re-built A681 Bridge. Rochdale Canal.


The next railway bridge and re-built Copperas House Bridge No 32. Rochdale Canal.


Gauxholme. Looking back from the second railway bridge. Rochdale Canal.


Copperas Bridge No 32. Rochdale Canal.


Smithyholm Lock No 25. Rochdale Canal.


Looking up at Pinnel Lock No 26. Rochdale Canal.


Looking back at Pinnel Lock No 26. Rochdale Canal.


Looking back at Pinnel Lock No 26. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Hollings Lock No 27. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Hollings Lock No 27. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Rochdale Canal.


Travis Mill Lock No 28. Walsden. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. The excellent Cross Keys pub just above Travis Mill Lock No 28. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Travis Mill Lock No 28. Water point just below on off-side. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Nip Square Lock No 29. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Looking back at Travis Mill Lock No 28 from Nip Square Lock No 29. Rochdale Canal.


Nip Square Lock No 29. Walsden. Rochdale Canal.


Winterbutlee  Lock No 29. Walsden. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Looking back at Nip Square Lock No 29. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Winterbutlee  Lock No 29. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Winterbutlee  Lock No 29. Rochdale Canal.


Walsden. Looking back at Winterbutlee  Lock No 29. Rochdale Canal.


Lightbank Lock No 31 in the distance. The scenery opens out for the summit pass. Rochdale Canal.


Lightbank Lock No 31. Rochdale Canal.


Lightbank Lock No 31. Rochdale Canal.


Lightbank Lock No 31. The new bottom gates with rack openers. Rochdale Canal.


Sands Lock No 32 with the rather out of place pair of semi's. Rochdale Canal.


Bottomley  Lock No 33. Rochdale Canal.


Rochdale Canal.


Warland Lower Lock No 34. Rochdale Canal.


Warland Upper Lock No 35 in the distance. Rochdale Canal.


The Bird i'th Hand pub / restaurant, a short walk from Lock No 35. Rochdale Canal.


Warland Lower Lock No 34. Rochdale Canal.


Leaving Warland Lower Lock No 34. Rochdale Canal.


Warland Upper Lock No 35. Rochdale Canal.


The county boundary, just before Warland Gate Bridge No 41, so not actually through the summit. Rochdale Canal.


Warland Upper Lock No 35. Rochdale Canal.


Warland Upper Lock No 35 and Warland Gate Bridge No 41. First evidence of the large BW presence over the next couple of days. Rochdale Canal.


Warland Gate Bridge No 41. Rochdale Canal.


Longlees Lock No 36. Rochdale Canal.


Longlees Lock No 36. The solid lock side seems to have been rebuilt at the lower end some time. There is still evidence of the 57ft6ins gate slot at the bottom. Rochdale Canal.


Out onto the summit, the level was a down about 9 inches. Rochdale Canal.


Looking back at  Longlees Lock No 36. Rochdale Canal.


The short summit pound. Rochdale Canal.


West Summit Lock No 37. Rochdale Canal.


West Summit Lock No 37. Rochdale Canal.


West Summit Lock No 37. The old 57ft 6ins bottom gate slots are still visible. Rochdale Canal.


West Summit Lock No 37. Summit Inn pub to far left. Rochdale Canal.


1st Below West Summit Lock No 38. Rochdale Canal.


1st Below West Summit Lock No 38. Rochdale Canal.


Punchbowl  Lock No 40 in the distance. Rochdale Canal.


Looking back at 2nd Below West Summit Lock No 39. Rochdale Canal.


Punchbowl  Lock No 40. Rochdale Canal.


Punchbowl  Lock No 40. Rochdale Canal.


1st Below Punchbowl  Lock No 41. We are going singularly because of a tight lock and the water spouts. Rochdale Canal.


2nd Below Punchbowl Lock No 42. Rochdale Canal.


2nd Below Punchbowl Lock No 42. Rochdale Canal.


We both fit in 2nd Below Punchbowl Lock No 42. Rochdale Canal.


2nd Below Punchbowl Lock No 42. Rochdale Canal.


Thickone Lock No 43. Rochdale Canal.


Thickone Lock No 43. Rochdale Canal.


Sladen  Lock No 44. Rochdale Canal.


Rochdale Canal.


Looking back at Pike House Hock No 45. Rochdale Canal.


Bent House Lock No 46. Rochdale Canal.


Bent House Lock No 46. Magnificent view back up to the summit. Rochdale Canal.


Bent House Lock No 46. Rochdale Canal.


Brian Holden stalwart secretary of the Rochdale Canal Society's boat. Rochdale Canal.


Littleborough Higher Lock No 47. Rochdale Canal.


Littleborough Higher Lock No 47 and the rebuilt Durn Bridge No R7. Rochdale Canal.


Littleborough. Rochdale Canal.


Littleborough Lower Lock No 48. Rochdale Canal.


Littleborough Lower Lock No 48. Rochdale Canal.

The Tour Continues...


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