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The name describes my demeanour and voice! I love narrowboating and that is why this blog is mainly about the boat and our interaction with it. I have been keeping a log for Sonflower ever since we bought her and moved onto her as our main residence. Some incidents in our boating life have been hilarious, some scary and some down right dangerous. I cannot tell what will come in the future but you can now share them! The crew are an 'ordinary' couple. The Best Mate and I.

Thursday, 5 April 2007

What is a narrow boat?

I just had a terrible thought. Some of you bloggers out there in the world wide web may not know what a narrowboat is or why it is called that. You can see from the pic that SONFLOWER is 17.1M long but only 2M wide! When the canals in the UK were built about 200 years ago most canals were narrow; the locks were built a little over 2m (7ft) wide and 22m (72ft) long. This conserved water which was very important to the canal designers of the day. Hence, today's cruising pleasure craft are still need to be narrow to be able to navigate the majority of the UK canals.

These pretty craft do find themselves on other waterways worldwide. There is a narrowboat at the moment making a voyage down the eastern seaboard of the USA. We have just returned from a trip to the Shannon in Ireland where we saw a couple of narrow boats on Loch Derg and we have navigated the Canal du Midi in southern France on a narrowboat.

However, being flat bottomed and of slight draft (approx 2ft) they have the sea going characteristics of a bath tub with the plug out. I have seen a seaworthy narrowboat but they are very few and far between.

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