Canal World

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About Robster

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  1. I drive a 2015 Hilux for work (it has blue lights and sirens). I like it..... positives... Selectable 4 wheel drive and selectable high and low ratio when in 4 wheel drive mode. Selectable diff lock Negatives... Stock tyres are pretty much useless off road High centre of gravity (but that might just be our configuration) I would always suggest having an off road course if you're going to be doing any significant off road driving - you'll be quite amazed just where you can drive a vehicle with the right techniques.
  2. No - you have the same opinion as me - and I told her - it's just that the whole experiance of the Rochdale 9, espeicially at lock 85, was a little unpleasant. I'm nowhere near as qualified as you, Nick, but as a firefigher (we also do Ambulance Co-Responding on our station) we do see a fair amount of unpleasant things, and I do try to educate my children accordingly - they are also pretty switched on as a result. Anyway - going off topic. I loved the Cheshire Ring by the way - and would recommend it to anyone, I guess I just had a bit of a bad experiance.
  3. Oh my - I'm away over Easter and cannot wait to wind my 15 year old son up with this.....If you happen to see a bloke with a broken leg steering a boat whilst laughing uncontrollably while a teenager tries to pull it along with a rope - give credit to Jack for the idea!
  4. Four counties is lovely - I've just added a time lapse of it in the cruising diaries section. I really like the Middlewich branch. Hope I didn't put you off the Cheshire ring - it's a lovely route.
  5. So a year later than my Chesire Ring posting earlier - my Son (who was 14 when he did this one) has learnt a bit about video producing. Easter 2016. Enjoy.
  6. It was April 2015. The foam was fire-service run off from a fire - Compressed Air Foam (basically harmless detergent).....made for great fun going through it, but it's really sticky, which mean tthe boat was filthy afterwards!
  7. A sort of video diary - my son did this when he was 13, so excuse the rave music! but the time lapse is pretty good. He did a similar (but better one) of the 4 counties last year, which he hasn't uploaded yet (teenagers!) and will be doing one of the Warwickshire ring in a few weeks.
  8. I fly fish on rivers and lakes for salmon and trout. I also fly fish on canals for pike - I use a speyside salmon rod (beefy two handed thing) and a very large "bait" or fly - that looks like a mouse or a frog. If you're interested, this is the guy who taught me to fish this way: It's good sport. Back cast tends to be OK, as you fish along the canal, not across it. Usual precautions with other canal users etc.. need to be taken. I don't fish navigable canals though (well, the canal I fish between Taunton and Bridgewater has a few boats, but it is very few). Rob
  9. I'll be arriving on the Monday.
  10. Brilliant - thank you! Just notices, I could actually book an overnight at Sherborne Wharf to be 100% guaranteed of a mooring - not sure if it's worthwhile or not...
  11. Oh - one more question - if I end up in Oozells loop, or by the ICC, am I able to turn to get down to Farmers Bridge Locks, or go round the loop to get back - or am I just looking at a length reverse?
  12. I had a couple of bad experiances coming up the Rochdale 9 two years ago...we arrived mid to late afternoon during the Easter holidays. Weather was glorious. In whole, espeicially the bottom section, the flight is OK - even pleasant. Lots of people milling around, and quite chatty. Lots of canal side bars. The unpleasantness started when we came alongside Canal Street - that was just unpleasant rather than dangerous - Got off the boat under bridge 97 to operate the lock, an area clearly used by homless people as a toilet, and there was an enormous amount of human faeces on the floor (dogs don't use loo roll right). Moving up to lock 85, there were a few unpleasant people hanging about under the building, which was OK until a duvet got wrapped around our prop - at this point, as I was distracted, one of the people hanging around tried to board the boat - I can only assume to do a quick run through to nick stuff. He really was determined, and it took a fair bit of "persuasion" from me (and maybe the fact that I had a windlass in my hand) to stop him. We didn't hang around, and actually ended up towing the boat by hand through that lock and lock 84 to get clear of the area. At this point I locked my 10 YO daughter in the cabin for fear of her safety. We briefly moored at Piccadilly Basin to clear the duvet from the prop, and thought we'd cleared the worst, but then under Ducie street bridge, my daughter asked me what the two guys on the tow path were doing - well, try explaining shooting up drugs to a 10 year old. There was detritous of drug use about too (used syringes etc..). After that, we moored in Telford Basin, and it was like a different world! Safe, clean and quiet. (we had Domino's pizza from a takeaway a few hundred yards away - but the kids loved it!) I would go through Manchester again, but I might adjust my timings somewhat - maybe early morning might be better. My advice would be to keep the cabin locked whilst going up the Rochdale 9. Hopefully, other people's experiances are far better than mine. Manchester is a lovely city.
  13. Hi, I've been hiring boats from various hire fleets for about 20 years now, and never in that time have I come across a hire boat fitted with smoke alarms. Maybe I'm paranoid (I'm a fire fighter by profession) but is this normal for hire fleets? Seems so, given my experiance. Im amazed that there is no legislation demanding fitting of alarms.
  14. Sadly with two school age children (one doing GCSE's this year) and a wife who is a teacher, I'm pretty much tied to school holidays! Thanks for your replies everyone - sounds like it's a defo overnight stop for us. I'm currently training for a marathon and I have to get a long training run in that day (18 miles)....the irony is is that the day we do that leg I will run further than we travel on the boat!
  15. Hi, Regular hirer here - we've been hiring for the last 20 years - just havent quite got round to buying a boat! Anyway, in that 20 years, we've never moored in Birmingham city centre - but we plan to do so whilst doign the Warwickshire ring this Easter. My question is how busy are the moorings likely to be - and will I need to get there extra early? I'll be setting out from Turners Green, 18 miles and 20 locks away, so it will be a bit of a full-on day. Thoughts?