A Week on the Caledonian Canal, Scotland, July 2011

Start & end base:

West Highland Sailing, Laggan Locks, Spean Bridge, Inverness-shire, Scotland


Elegance class, number 18

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Index 5 July

Wednesday 6 July 2011

7 July

Very heavy rain to start our penultimate full day on board Elegance 18. However we were not unduly disappointed as we had the long trip back down Loch Ness to Fort Augustus. There was again very little wind, so we just relaxed inside the boat and headed South West from 8am.

Again we had discussed our plans for our arrival at Fort Augustus, and these were dependent on the time of arrival and whether we needed to wait to pull our boat up through the staircase locks.

We arrived at Fort Augustus after 3 hours, and in a somewhat breezy entrance to the channel made our way slowly towards the road bridge.

We were approached by a lock keeper on the bank asking if we wished to traverse the locks as they were ready. We took the opportunity, otherwise it may have meant waiting 2 -> 3 hours due to the time taken to take boats up, bring others down and stopping for lunch.

This time only needing to pull one craft through the locks, we completed the function in 1 hours as before, though this time in rain. There were still quite a few people watching the spectacle.

Formidable looking Loch Ness

Fort Augustus lower lock



Apparently it taken million gallons of water (around 3,500 tonnes) each time a lock is used.

We decided to moor at the top of Fort Augustus staircase for the evening, as we now had plenty of time to return to Laggan boat base the next day.

Although it rained all afternoon, we still found plenty to do. There were lots of boats to watch, many birds - especially swallows putting on a good flying show, other boat people to talk to as well as sitting and reading.

Our provisions were now running low as there was no need to stock up for just a couple more days. The canalside Fish & Chip shop was very close to our mooring position, so rather than eat out we got some and brought them back to the boat. They were very nice, and the fish were brought from Mallaig in Scotland.


Dochgarroch Lock -> Fort Augustus bottom lock. Cruising time : 3 hours
Sat nav n57.14486, w4.68154
Fort Augustus bottom lock -> Fort Augustus top. Pulling time : 1 hours (5 locks, 1 swing bridge)
Sat nav n57.14413, w4.6872

Index 5 July

Wednesday 6 July 2011

7 July