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Tidal Ouse

I'm going to be heading from Chester up to Ripon on 1st October. 180 miles and 154 locks. I have never taken my boat onto a river, just canals. I'm not worried about the journey, other than the tidal river ouse. How scary is that section and can anyone offer me any advice on mooring on it, as I'm sure it can't be done in a day. Timing the tides? Help?

Asked by: Carl  | 11.03am, Thursday 1 September

WW says:

If you are heading down the tidal Trent, it is possible to do the journey to Keadby in one go, but usually only by faster cruisers. Narrowboats would sensibly stop off at West Stockwith and/or Torksey, where you lock off the tidal river onto non-tidal waters. Generally, apart from an emergency, there is no mooring on the tidal Trent (or tidal Ouse, for that matter).
The Trent Boating association guides to the tidal waterways of the North East are superb reading and highly recommended for the journey.
Remember to check your boat is suitably equipped for river journeys- especially the state of the engine/fuel/cooling system, plus anchor/chain/rode, horn and navigation lights. if in doubt, please ask.
Most importantly- enjoy! Its actually a lovely bit of river and can be exceptionally peaceful.

Mark Langley  | 10.51AM, Friday 2 September

If you read the Trent Boating Association guide, it has all the information in that you would require- its a very comprehensive guide to the waterways of the North East and supported by the TBA.

Mark Langley  | 11.37AM, Friday 2 September

Readers say:

You will need to check on the tide/ lock times as you can only passage around high tide and lock operating hours.
You will need an updated one for October when it is released.
Useful contact details for locks and bridges;
Railway bridge times;
Guidance notes;
Radio call points;
It is not mandatory to have a radio between Selby and Naburn but often there is no mobile phone reception when you need it. It is very handy to be able to contact the locks and bridges to check air draft but just as importantly listen to what other traffic to expect coming the other way. Although by then there shouldn't be too much.
Naburn guidance notes;
Takes around 3 hours from Selby to Naburn for a slow bruiser like mine. Make sure you've checked with the railway bridge and town swing bridge before leaving the lock and not like me trying to do it whilst negotiating the bridges at the same time! Can be a little unnerving after leaving the tranquillity of the Selby canal but you soon find your feet. The key is to be sensible and avoid spring tides and high rainfall.
Moorings available at;
Naburn Lock (48 hours)
York Marina - although there is a charge dependent upon the length of your boat. £3.15/m per night including electricity.
York - on the right on the way up after millennium bridge. Not sure if these are official but new chains hung this year.
York - Kings Staithe
York - Queens Staithe
York - Museum Gardens (48 hours) - Best choice IMO
Linton Lock - below lock £6 per night. Above lock one free place (24 hours).
Boroughbridge - Milby Cut (2 weeks) - Nice spot but don't be fooled you still need to keep an eye on the water level.
Ripon - start of Ripon canal (2 weeks)
Ripon canal - along the tow path but wouldn't recommend due to width and shallow bank.
Ripon - Ripon basin (48 hours)
Very rough timings rounded up and normal river levels and tides;
Selby to Naburn 3 hours
Naburn to York 2 hours
York to Linton 3 hours
Linton to Boroughbridge 3 hours
Boroughbridge to start of Ripon canal 3 hours
Ripon canal to Ripon basin 2 hours
Lovely run! Enjoy! ;D

John Lawson  | 3.43PM, Thursday 1 September

Just in case you are not familiar Selby to Naburn is the only tidal section.

John Lawson  | 3.48PM, Thursday 1 September

Thanks for that incredibly useful information! I'm not quite sure how to "Make sure you've checked with the railway bridge and town swing bridge before leaving the lock and not like me trying to do it whilst negotiating the bridges at the same time!", but I'm sure I'll work it out!

Carl  | 11.06AM, Friday 2 September

vhf radio or mobile telephone.

John Lawson  | 1.31PM, Friday 2 September

Contacting the bridges is to check air draft to see if they need to open them for you. If you are a canal boat, unless the river is really high! You should have no problem. However, you should still contact them, via vhf radio or mobile, out of courtesy. They do seem to take an interest in who is where on the tidal section between Selby and Naburn.
Also, take the railway bridge and the Selby Town swing bridge on the right going and Cawood swing bridge on the left(just left of the central control hut, not far left!) going up river. And Cawood bridge on the right and Selby town swing bridge on the left going down river. Hence the reason for it being useful knowing who else is on the river at the time. If you need anymore information nearer the time feel free to get in touch. I'm new to boating but live by Cawood swing bridge. I just recently did the run myself for the first time hence all the information to hand. I'm not a complete anorak. ;D

John Lawson  | 1.58PM, Friday 2 September

Selby railway bridge also on the left going down river.

John Lawson  | 2.01PM, Friday 2 September

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