Friday, 13 January 2017

The Beginnings of a Plan

This weekend we are meeting up with friends to discuss plans for our summer trip to Scotland. They are also bringing their boat Nitty Gritty along for the ride. Regular readers of the blog will recognise the boat name as they often accompany us on our trips and were with us in Norfolk and Suffolk lat summer.

Martyn and Gill are popping across to Burton Waters on Sunday lunchtime so that we can talk through a few plans and ideas as to where we will visit over a few pints and lunch in the pub at the marina, Woodcocks. 

We already know that we are both being delivered to Inverness Marina and that the first day will be a rest day to clean the boats, refuel and restock. But after that we are yet to decide. The only plan so far is that we will head the short distance from Inverness Marina to Clachnaharry Lock and the start of the Caledonian Canal.

Clachnaharry Sea Lock.

Entry to the sea lock is available four hours either side of high water so is a fairly large tidal window, much larger then we are usually used to on the East coast. High water on the day we plan to enter the canal is at 12.45pm so we have a wide ranging time window to enter the canal from 8.45am right through to 4.45pm. We will plan to make the most of the tide for the short run upstream so will aim to be at the lock prior to high water at lunchtime.

Where we head from there is anybodies guess. Much will depend on how long it takes to buy our visitor licences and how long it takes to work our way up the next lock and swing bridge, but the first logical place to stop is Seaport Marina still in Inverness.

Seaport Marina with Clachnaharry Sea Lock to the top right and Muirtown swing bridge and lock flight to the bottom left.

Seaport Marina will be our last chance to stock up on any essential items prior to Fort Augustus and we have recommendations of a good pub in the area so this will be a good stopping point prior to tackling our first lock flight of the trip, the four locks of the Muirtown flight and the accompanying swing bridge. Thankfully all of the locks and bridges are manned so less work for us!


  1. Sounds like a great way to spend your summer break.
    I believe the old BW license was valid for the Caladonian, when did this change

  2. No idea. We do need a separate Scottish Canals licence though which is bloody expensive for a week. We are looking at £140 for a week!