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Scotland Boat Hire


Gracie

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Has anyone had experience with West Highland Sailing and Caley Cruisers on the Caladonian Canal in Scotland, good or bad?

 

Been thinking about going for a couple of years now, seen some pics of the canal and it looks stunning, also,  can you wild moor, are there pubs to stop at for lunch, can you mud weight etc?

 

Any inside knowledge greatly appreciated

 

Grace

 

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I personaly Grace have not been on the Cally Canal, but as Loch Ness is just under 800ft at its deepest point. So no mudweighting. It can get pretty rough on Loch Ness also. IF you get the weather the views are stunning and I am sure someone on here has been on the Cally Canal. Alan - Ranworth Breeze? My brother in law did it many years ago and there were very few mooring places then. The one thing to watch out for is our infamous Midge! The little sods are evil. Also the drive up the A9 is a slog but oh boy what views as you head North. Inverness is a nice place to stay too. I like over in Ross n Cromerty and have stayed at Dingwall several times. It aint cheap to hire boats either. But if I was 30 years younger I would go and have a break on the Lochs and Canal.

 

Whatever you do I am sure you will be made welcome up in the Highlands.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loch_Ness

http://www.canalguide.co.uk/canals/britain_canal_caledonian.html

 

cheers Iain.    S.T.B. :naughty:

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We went on the Caledonian a few years ago with Caley cruisers.  It is definitely worth doing but unlike the Broads, there are no wild moorings.  Having said that, there are so few hire cruisers that it is easy to get away from everybody.  The locks are good fun, especially the flight at Fort Augustus!  (You have to pull the boat up the flight of 6 )  Loch Ness can be a bit 'choppy' (think of Breydon on a bad day and triple it - having said that, our outward journey wasn't so bad, it was the return leg which got a bit hairy at times) and we had to wait at the entrance to Loch Lochy for a day as the boatyard had phoned the lock keeper to say the wind was too strong.  However, we managed to get through the following day and the mooring at the end of the canal, which is opposite Ben Nevis was well worth the wait.

 

There are far fewer facilities than on the Broads, and, of course, there is only one way to go, so that you retrace your steps on the way back.  We went for 10 days and really enjoyed it, but if you like a bit of 'life' on holiday, then it probably isn't for you.  For a relaxing, get away from it all holiday it takes some beating.  Kytra lock just past Fort Augustus is an absolutely wonderful place to moor.as is Loch Oich.

 

The locks are all worked by keepers so are easy compared with the English canals, excepting the flight mentioned above.

 

I will look out the photos and attempt to upload some for you.  It is expensive, and Caley cruisers compared unfavourably, in my opinion, with say, Richardsons but it is well worth doing.

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Thank you both for detailed replies, I do know the lochs are deep and not even in a blonde moment would I attempt it lol, it sounds ideal for seclusion, that's what we look for on the Broads to be honest, we just enjoy the odd pub lunch.

 

Photos would be good, thanks Kadensa

 

Thanks for the links Iain, am I missing something, what's S.T.B

 

Grace

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Iain, I thought you were an Electrician by trade not a bloody travel agent lol

 

Kadensa, you seem to have been on a lot of waterways, would love to hear more about your adventures, I've only been on the Yorkshire Ouse and the Broads lol

 

Grace

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Loch Ness looks much calmer than when we were there.  However, I've just remembered that we took video shots so I will look those out too. 

 

We had post-198-0-06879500-1401583060_thumb.jpg

 

a small boat, but easily powerful enough. They no longer have that one but this looks much the same -

 

http://www.caleycruisers.com/boat-class/isle-of-skye-class/  

 

(strangely enough I have  'Alibi ' on the TV at the moment and being shown now is an episode of Murdoch Mysteries in which people see  a monster in Lake Ontario. There are many references to the Loch Ness monster; strange coincidence!

 

 

 

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Hello Grace,

 

Here is a link to Cayley Cruisers:-

http://www.caleycruisers.com/

We were thinking of returning to the Caledonian last year but ended up going on the Union & Clyde canals instead mostly down to cost and the shorter travel journey. The six berth narrow boat was £1750 for a week in May all in, the cruisers we were looking at on Caledonian were from £2400 to £3500 plus around £400 to £500 in all the extras.

Our problem was that we required three double berths.

The last time we were on the Caledonian was when there was no passage through Laggan locks (1976) where serious cracks in the locks walls were found, needless to say this cut down our passage on the canal.

I am not sure who we hired from at the time but Cayley Cruisers were operating from the early 70's and we did hire from a boatyard on the canal section into Inverness.

The boat we hired was a steel cruiser and at 25 foot was hardly big enough for four adults and a baby.

We had a great time, well I did, everyone else was seasick when we moored on a mooring buoy on the edge of Loch Ness.

Loch Ness can be like a mill pond and all you can see is your wake but on the flat water you see movement in the water to the side of you but well away from boat, giving you that eerie feeling. As already stated the waves on Loch Ness can be very dramatic and beats Breydon Water hands down.

We will have to revisit there again and suggest to anyone it is well worth the visit.

Regards

Alan

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We hired from them in 1976. We had a lovely time. The boat yard were very good. Someone had broken down and they asked us to tow them all the way back across Lock Ness. Great fun. When you are cruising in the middle of Lock Ness it puts the size into perspective. That was our third time of hiring having done the Llangollen canal and river Thames. I would recommend it.

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Thank you Alan and Max, it is on my bucket list and something I must do but very expensive and I didn't win the euro lottery so will have to save some pennies lol. The Thames is also on my list but worries me as I come from Woolwich and it's not a pretty part of river, although I do realise it's not like that everywhere. been on the Woolwich Ferry many times as a little girl, I know sounds daft but that's where I think my love of boating comes from, used to get really excited when we had a trip over to North Woolwich, easily pleased it would seem lol

 

Grace

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